Movie and poetry

Perejaume: Paraules locals

Moderated by Iago Otero

If we are to make sense of our current situation, we need to listen to different languages, literally (meaning languages other than English), but also in a wider sense, meaning languages of representation other than this of science, and voices other than those of humans. Escaping from the economism is one of the main challenges that this conference will deal with. Several authors have stressed the importance of listening to multiple languages of valuation, integrating lay knowledge and personal memories with scientific knowledge to avoid reductionism. In other words, capturing invisible realities through their traces and imagining radically new ones. Otherness excluded from Modernity must be taken into account in an ethics off-centered from the rational subject, towards the radically and absolutely strange: other cultures, other species, other living beings, other life-creating forms, others, in its most genuine sense.

Perejaume is one of the most important contemporary artists of Catalunya and Spain. In 2005 he was awarded the Catalan National Prize of Visual Arts, in 2006 the Spanish National Prize of Plastic Arts, and in 2007 the Spanish National Prize of Graphic Arts. His work mixes forms of expression such as painting, poetry, sculpture, and intervention, and is engaged with humans' relationship with the non-human world. Perejaume’s work is motivated by a quest to give voice to nature and the landscape. As we will feel today, his writing is both intellectual and sensory. While offering a profound reflection and a unique worldview, his language sounds beautiful. Sound and sense; language is a phenomenon in itself.

Perejaume will talk about the loss of our physical contact with nature, and will raise very relevant questions in the degrowth debate. Is there an “outside” of our urban-capitalist world? Why might be useful to think about the memory of the small peasantry? How should we proceed to glimpse alternative realities? How can we enlarge the closest space that surrounds us? Perejaume’s talk, in Catalan with simultaneous translation, will be followed by his video Obres completes (2004, 3’).

PUT GOLD BACK (1991)1

Put gold back into the earth, scatter the mountains with bronze and marble and ivory, so that they might represent just what we are missing most: the place from whence they came.

A LAND FULL OF LIGHT (2000)2

A land full of light,

a land where light might accumulate,

heaped and burning:

a whole estate of light.


A land with all its skies lying down

just like proper hills

that rise up with the morning

and set at dusk.


If we could only lift the land into the light!

If only we knew how to raise it up straight,

so that it would not fade,

in a burning and celestial field of light!

1 Perejaume. From the book La pintura i la boca.

2 Perejaume. Translated by Anna Crowe. From the book Pagèsiques (forthcoming).

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