Visual Arts


— by Patrícia Almeida

11.09 — 22.11.08
Galeria Zé dos Bois

Portobello is a photography project carried out over several visits to the Algarve between 2005 and 2007. Starting from a documentary approach to photography, Portobello explores the phenomenon of summer tourism and the iconographic imagery associated with it, whose institutional promotion based on techniques of marketing addresses the idea of ​​territory in terms of ‘place-brand’. A place to be, not to live or visit, but to try, consume for a week or two. Or, to quote the slogan of the Ministry of Economy and Innovation: «Algarve. Ready for lifetime experiences? ». The choice of the title Portobello thus seeks to resume the idea of
«Place-brand», transposing it to a place without very precise references, can be the Algarve, as well as the Spanish or Greek or Brazilian coast … A fictional and partially fictional place.
Portobello thus presents itself as a place on the verge of fiction, simultaneously real and invented, a kind of ‘theme park’ without a theme, but anchored in collective imagery related to holidays and built on stereotypes. As a documentary project, it also presents itself as a photographic essay on how the temporary occupation flows generated by summer tourism influence the construction of the identity of a place.

Patrícia Almeida

Patrícia Almeida (1970-2017), photographer and co-founder of GHOST Editions together with David-Alexandre Guéniot. She graduated in History at Nova University (F.C.S.H) in Lisbon and Photography at Goldsmiths College in London. She was interested in photography as a language and a territory of research and artistic creation. Her exhibitions frequently took the shape of installations working with various means of image production: photographic prints, artist books, posters, billboards, newspapers, videos or projected image. Her projects often started as books or artist publications, an important aspect of her work.
In 2009 she was nominated for the Portuguese contemporary art prize Besphoto for her exhibition and book project ‘Portobello’.

She was a member of POC/Piece of Cake, a network of European and North American artists working with photography and video.

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