CT1LN project part II
2019 | MNAC – Museu Nacional de Arte Contemporânea, Lisbon
Curated by Adelaide Ginga
In his last year he (Winckler) didn’t go out at all. Smautf became accustomed to taking him up his meals twice a day, and seeing to his cleaning and washing (…) He stayed all day in his pyjama trousers and a sleeveless red cotton vest over which he would pull, when he was cold, a kind of indoor jacket of soft flannel and a polka-dot scarf.
Valène called on him in the afternoon several times. He found him sitting at his table looking at the hotel labels that Smautf had added for him to each of the watercolours he’d despatched (…) He wanted, so he said, to sort the labels into order, but it was very difficult: of course, there was chronological order, but he found it poor, even poorer than alphabetical order. He had tried by continents, then by country, but that didn’t satisfy him. What he would have liked would be to link each label to the next, but each time in respect of something else:
for example, they could have some detail in common, a mountain or volcano, an illuminated bay, some particular flower, the same red and gold edging, the beaming face of a groom, (…) or a relationship based not on similarity but an opposition or a fragile, almost arbitrary association: a minute village by an Italian lake followed by the skyscrapers of Manhattan, skiers followed by swimmers, fireworks by candlelit dinner, railway by aeroplane (…) etc.
It’s not just hard, Winckler added, above all it’s useless: if you leave the labels unsorted and take two at random, you can be sure they’ll have at least three things in common.
Perec, Georges (2008) Life, A User’s Manual (trans. David Bellos), London: Vintage, pp 31-32
The CT1LN project, by Henrique Vieira Ribeiro, has been in development since 2014 and consists of the artistic interpretation of a collection accumulated over the course of four decades by amateur radio personality Paulo V..
What distinguishes this project and makes it unique is not just the theme behind it, which is novel or at least uncommon in the field of visual arts, but also its strikingly unusual aesthetic and poetic approach, which reveals a reality that is not widely accessible and shaped by the use of a range of media.
Conceptually, the ‘CT1LN’ project is split into two parts: Part I, As Viagens de Paulo V. [The Journeys of Paulo V], is made up of works of photography, drawing and installation; Part II, O Arquivista [The Archivist], evolved around an effort to catalogue the collection of amateur radio identity cards that Paulo V compiled over the course of his practice and is materialised as an interactive installation based on a dialectic between past and present, absence and presence, the material and the virtual. It is an artistic proposal that uses the Internet and digital and computational languages.
The exhibition comprises two video projections: one that presents an indexing glossary, and the other exhibiting the cards referring to each term from the glossary. An interface is placed between these two projections: Paulo V’s original microphone, assuming its condition as an object/artefact adapted to new technologies. Interaction is created when the visitor voices one of the glossary terms, summoning up the presentation of the selection of cards that were indexed for this term. In addition to these three elements, Paulo V’s original filing cabinet is displayed in the atrium of the MNAC by way of introduction and as an element of articulation between Part I and Part II of the CT1LN project. The archive and its documentation thus become ‘a place of all times that is itself outside time’ (Michel Foucault).
The visitor is now the new traveller.