This sculpture derives from the line of work that the artist has been developing about migration, which started with a trip to the island of Lesbos (Greece) in March 2016. The time spent at Lesbos was divided between volunteer work with the NGO ERCI (assisting migrants/refugees that arrived by boat), visual documentation and collection of objects.
The work is composed of 140 orange life-vests, that create a contrast with the surroundings of the natural greenery and life of the Fontelo Park. The intention is to create a contrasting dialogue between the elements of the work, the Park and the city of Viseu. This provides a platform for discussion regarding migration, Europe, responsibility, and about life and death.
Born in Luanda, (1978, Angola). He holds a master’s degree in Fine Arts from Central Saint Martins College of Design (London, UK). Graduated (2005) in Sculpture, by the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Lisbon (Portugal). In 2004 he was awarded an “Erasmus” Scholarship at the Fine Arts University of Athens.
In his work he explores issues of identity and stereotypes in direct relation to education, history and institutions. This interest comes from his personal experience as Angolan and Portuguese. He explores his identity and the political, social and economic positions of these two countries and continents. Pedro Pires uses different media, techniques, and everyday objects that are strongly utilitarian and mass produced to construct various figurative and conceptual meanings of identity in different societies. There is a constant concern to think about local and global issues, using references from traditional, popular, local or foreign contexts.
His artistic career spans more than 10 years. His work has been exhibited in places such as: Natural History Museum of Angola, Luanda, Angola; Museum of Fine Arts in Montreal, Canada; 1:54 Art Fair and Christie’s, London, UK; Lagos Biennial, Nigeria; Cape Town Art Fair, South Africa; Grand Palais – ArtParis, France; Gallery Momo, Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa; Lorne Biennale, Australia: ExpoChicago, Chicago, USA.