Galeria Municipal do PortoGaleria Municipal do Porto

Memória de Elefante

PING! / schools / april 17, 18, 19

Workshop Filters for Image Transgression, with Thais de Menezes

Filters for Image Transgression was a workshop that started from a decolonial action as well as from the deconstruction of three places: the Infante D. Henrique High School, the Crystal Palace with its Gardens and the First Portuguese Colonial Exhibition, which have in common their temporal and ideological conception. 
By bringing together students and teachers in three encounters, Thais de Menezes intended to potentiate collective experiences, both in the classroom and in her atelier, in an attempt to transgress teaching and its learning methods. The portrait in painting and photography, its descriptions, and also digital images with the use of filters or masks, was approached and rehearsed, generating new representations.  
Based on these artistic practices and on the archive of the 1934 colonial exhibition, the (re)creation of ways of observing oneself and the other was proposed. The development of a collective installation will allow new "observation filters" to take into consideration the places of speech and of listening, but also the different ways of life, cultures and knowledge. 
In the context of this workshop, there was also a lecture by Beatriz Lemos, curator at MAM - Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro, who, based on the developed project, brought her vision and experience in curatorial practices and anti-racist mediation.

Thais de Menezes is Brazilian, and bases her activities between Porto and Barcelona. She integrates the Independent Studies Program (PEI) at MACBA, is a Master's student in Art History at Universidade Nova de Lisboa and has a degree in Dance from Faculdade Angel Vianna (Brazil).  
She develops curatorial research in artistic practices that cross between performance and visual arts. She belongs, since 2012, to the collective Desdito, along with philosopher Fabio de Oliveira. Together, they have been presenting proposals at the Laurinda Santos Lobo Cultural Centre (Brazil) and in the Gardens of the Museum of Modern Art (Brazil), performances in public urban spaces, and seminars in art and culture institutions.  
Currently, she coordinates the ATRAVESSA project, located in the artist's studio in Porto, seeking to be a place to exchange work and creation with artists, activists, and thinkers in the field of philosophy and literature.

Photography: Rui Meireles / Ágora Porto

Thursday, May 25th, at 7pm

Talk: Sewing between times: notes on curatorship, education and collections

From a curatorial practice that connects art, learning processes and memory, curator Beatriz Lemos joins PING!, to share the most recent exhibition projects, public programmes and publications carried out by the Curatorial, Education, Communication and Collection departments of MAM - Museum of Modern Art of Rio de Janeiro, in Brazil. 
The conversation takes place within the workshop Filters for Image Transgression, guided by Thais de Menezes, which started from a decolonial action and the deconstruction of three places: the Infante D. Henrique Secondary School, the Palácio de Cristal, with its gardens, and the First Portuguese Colonial Exhibition, which have in common their temporal and ideological conception.
Beatriz Lemos works in curatorship and directs the platform Lastro - Free Exchanges in Art. From counter-hegemonic perspectives, she acts in the conduction and articulation of transdisciplinary processes in networking, creation and learning.
With a degree in Art History from UERJ and a Masters in Social History of Culture from PUC RJ, her curatorial research began in 2003, comprising a vast curriculum of exhibitions, residencies, publications, networking, educational practices, coordination of residency programmes, conferences and research processes, in addition to the organization, cataloging and mediation of collections. 
She is currently Associate Curator at MAM - Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro, in Brazil.

Photography: Rui Meireles / Ágora Porto

Walks trough the gardens

Trees are not, after all, the only witnesses

In 1934, Porto was the chosen venue for the First Portuguese Colonial Exhibition. The Palácio de Cristal received a new façade, in a more modern style and was temporarily named Palácio das Colónias (Colonial Palace). In the 19th century gardens, an idea of the Portuguese empire was staged, through the recreation of "Indian villages", where women, men and children were exhibited and exoticised to legitimise a campaign to attract new settlers.

Few traces seem to be left by this exhibition in the gardens, but it is precisely this idea of false invisibility that led PING! to reflect on the impact of this colonial exaltation in the city. Trees are not, after all, the only witnesses is the title of a programme of walks through the gardens that will use visual records, souvenirs from the period and the legacy that remains in the urban public space to revisit and debate this colonial exhibition.

Each walk will be led by Claire Sivier and Marta Lança who, in their artistic and research practices, have been stimulating the debate and opening it to a post-colonial perspective. At the end of each activity, there will be space and time for a collective conversation. 

PING! / 3 (4pm)

Walk through the gardens with Marta Lança: The Africa that comes: from Humiliation to Afrotopia

If colonialism instrumentalized knowledge and ignorance to colonize territories and minds, this pretension was later replaced by "development" policies (progress, reason, growth and order). From a place where a worldview of hierarchical order was staged par excellence and where Africans were humiliatingly objectified (at the First Portuguese Colonial Exposition, 1934), let's look for what Africa has been teaching us every day and for many centuries. 
Subverting the logic of racial inferiority, which sustained the European fallacy and program of "civilizing" the other (as the one who should absorb the values of a supposed European civilization), and in the antithesis of the one and indivisible national and imperial sovereignty of Portuguese colonialism, we will make a journey through communitarian, utopian, lived and imagined meanings, with Afrotopia (2016) by the Senegalese thinker Felwine Saar, on the horizon. 
Marta Lança, taking on the projections and effabulations, leads us through words and images in the corners of the gardens, to help us think about this Africa that comes and the metaphors of a future of balance between the economic, cultural and spiritual dimensions. 
With a degree in Portuguese Literature and a PhD student in Art Studies, Marta Lança has been investigating post-colonial issues, memory disputes and knowledge production in collaborative platforms. She is self-employed in the fields of culture and journalism, regularly working on projects in Cape Verde, Angola, Mozambique, Guinea and Brazil. She created and edits, since 2010, the BUALA portal.

Photography: Renato Cruz Santos


Saturday, October 28 at 4pm

Walk through the gardens with Claire Sivier

We invite you to visit the gardens of Palácio through the perspective of British-Jamaican artist and researcher Claire Sivier, along with local collaborators. 
Following the 1934 First Portuguese Colonial Exhibition, what lingers within the garden nearly 90s years on? What hidden remitments remain and perhaps mirror current societal perspectives? And how does this connect to the wider narratives of diasporic colonial histories? How can these considerations probe us to reframe our understanding of these narratives in the present moment? This interactive tour will encourage participants to reflect on these questions, bring together their personal perspectives, consider their relationship to the space, and what actions that might want to take forward into the future.
Claire Sivier (she/her) is a black-British researcher, cultural producer, working and living in Porto. For the last 12 years, her work is developed with and for artists, youth and people from marginalized communities, in addition to organizing a variety of festivals and cultural programs in different countries. In 2020, Claire completed her master's degree in Art and Design for Public Space at the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Porto, where she developed a walking art methodology, exploring the lived experiences of black diaspora artists in Porto. Since then, she founded the Black Women's Walk (2021). She is part of the InterStruct Collective.

Photography: Renato Cruz Santos

Thursday, November 30 at 7pm

Terra – Conference with Gabriela de Matos and Paulo Tavares

This year marks the 18th edition of the Venice Architecture Biennale with the central theme being Laboratory of the Future. In this talk, Gabriela de Matos and Paulo Tavares - curators of the Brazil Pavilion - will share what it was like to think of Brazil as Terra [Earth], in the exhibition that won the Golden Lion. 
In their own words, they explain that earth is "soil, fertiliser, ground and territory. But it is also earth in its global and cosmic sense, as a planet and the common home of all life, human and non-human. Earth as memory, and also as future, looking at the past and heritage to broaden the field of architecture in the face of the most pressing contemporary urban, territorial and environmental issues." 
The conversation will be moderated by Andreia Garcia, curator of Portugal's official representation at the Venice Biennale, and will also aim to showcase other projects that Gabriela and Paulo are developing independently in Brazil.
Auditório da Biblioteca Municipal Almeida Garrett

To attend the conference the free ticket must be collected (maximum 2 per person) up to 15 minutes before the event starts. Reservations can be made in advance by emailing

Images: Rafa Jacinto / Fundação Bienal de São Paulo

Gabriela de Matos is an Afro-Brazilian architect and urban planner, born in Vale do Rio Doce in Minas Gerais. She creates multidisciplinary projects with the aim of promoting and highlighting Brazilian architectural and urban culture from the perspective of race and gender. She graduated from the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism at PUC Minas in 2010. She currently teaches undergraduate Architecture and Urbanism at Escola da Cidade. She is the CEO of Estúdio de Arquitetura – Gabriela de Matos, created in 2014.  
She was also vice-president of the São Paulo department of the Brazilian Institute of Architects (2020-2022), and is the founder of the project Arquitetas Negras, which maps the production of black Brazilian architects. De Matos researches architecture produced in Africa and its diaspora with a focus on Brazil. She proposes actions that promote the debate on gender and race in architecture as a means of bringing visibility to the issue. 
Paulo Tavares explores the interfaces between architecture, visual cultures, curatorship, theory and advocacy. Operating across multiple mediums, his work opens up a collaborative arena focused on environmental justice and counter-narratives in architecture. His designs and texts have been featured in various national and international exhibitions and publications, including Harvard Design Magazine, The Architectural Review, the Oslo Architecture Triennial, the Istanbul Design Biennale, and the 32nd Bienal de São Paulo - Live Uncertainty.  
Tavares was co-curator of the Chicago Architecture Biennale 2019 (USA) and is currently a member of the curatorial board of the second edition of the Sharjah Architecture Triennale 2023 (UAE). He has curated several projects like the Climate Emergency > Emergence, at the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology (MAAT) in Lisbon (Portugal).  
He is the author of several texts and books that question the colonial legacies of modernity, including Forest Law/Floresta Jurídica (2014), Des-Habitat (2019), Memória da terra (2019), Lúcio Costa era racista? (2020), and Derechos No-Humanos (2022). His design projects are also featured at this year's Biennale in the Arsenal pavilion. 
Andreia Garcia is a PhD architect, curator and teacher. Her interests focus on the contemporary practice of architecture in an era marked by strong technological advances and a progressive ecological crisis. She has lectured at the School of Architecture at the University of Minho and at the Architectural Association. She is a professor and vice-president of the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Beira Interior. She is the founder of Architectural Affairs, the Architecture Gallery and director of the art(e)facts Biennial. She is the curator of the Portuguese representation at the 18th International Architecture Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia 2023.

Photography: Dinis Santos

Thursday, December 14, at 7pm

Zoos humanos, ethnic freaks y exhibiciones etnológicas – Conference with Hasan G. López Sanz

This conference will address some of the issues that Spanish philosopher Hasan G. López Sanz has been investigating, such as the complex relationships between exoticism and education, anthropology and colonial memory, restitution and reparation. 
The presentation will also consider how contemporary art has materialised these ideas, particularly through the work of artists who have deconstructed the colonial thinking that often persists in some of the human sciences and academia.
"Zoos humanos, ethnic freaks y exhibiciones etnológicas. Una aproximación desde la antropología, la estética y la creación artística contemporánea", published by Hasan Lópes in 2017, was also one of the many references for building the core knowledge of the "Memória de Elefante" axis of Ping! The book, published by the Concreta publishing house, deals with important topics for reflection and debate on these matters, such as the Estado Novo's decision to organise the "First Portuguese Colonial Exhibition" in Porto's Palácio de Cristal Gardens in 1934.
Auditório da Biblioteca Municipal Almeida Garrett

To attend the conference the free ticket must be collected (maximum 2 per person) up to 15 minutes before the event starts. Reservations can be made in advance by emailing

Images: [2]Lurdes Basoli, Eclipse [ongoing project]
[1]Andrés Pachon, La Derrota del Rostro [exhibition view], 2018 (in collaboration with Hasan G. López Sanz)

Hasan G. López Sanz
has a PhD in Philosophy. He is a lecturer in Aesthetics and Art Theory at the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Valencia, an associate researcher at CRAL (Centre de Recherches sur les Arts et le Langage) in Paris, and a member and director of the research group "Grupo de estudios visuales sobre memoria de la esclavitud, el colonialismo y sus legados", among other projects.
His research centres on the image, its practices and public uses, especially in relation to anthropology, aesthetics and contemporary art. Her publications include books such as "Zoos humanos, ethnic freaks y exhibiciones etnológicas. Una aproximación desde la antropología, la estética y la creación artística contemporánea" (Concreta, 2017), "Let's bring blacks home! Colonial imagination and ways of graphically approaching black people in Africa" (1880-1968) (PUV, 2020).

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