AfroBrasil: Art and Identities

An intersection of Latino and Afro-Brazilian culture and history at the National Hispanic Cultural Center Art Museum

By Andrew Echeguren
Published on LatinoLA: April 9, 2015

AfroBrasil: Art and Identities

The AfroBrasil: Art and Identities exhibition continues its run exploring Brazilian heritage across frontiers at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico until mid-August. The collection features Brazilian designer and photographer Paulo P. Lima. Lima's work highlights a number of photographed images and dressed figurines that include elements of the Afro-Brazilian religion Candombl?®, a deeply rooted religious tradition in Brazil dating back to the colonial times.

Since its debut late 2015, AfroBrasil: Art and Identities has accentuated individual stories of identity from each of its featured artists. These insights, including Lima's, emphasize the rich multi-racial and multi-ethnic history of Brazil. Using handcrafted felts, silks and recycled materials, Dr. Lima dresses wooden figurines to represent his diverse Afro-Brazilian heritage. Lima's participation in the exhibit contributes to its effort to educate North American and international audiences about the subtleties of the network of Brazilian cultures.

In addition to his designs, Lima incorporates photography into his exhibit. His photography collection depicts a number of Afro-Brazilian traditions including images of Baianas, which is an iconic representation of working women who sell acaraj?® on the streets of Salvador and other Brazilian cities.

"I am very excited to continue my participation in AfroBrasil: Art and Identities Exhibition," said Dr. Lima. "It is a must-see exhibit for anyone interested in the dialogue between Hispanic heritage and Afro-Brazilian culture. "

The work developed for his collection was inspired and developed while he conducted research as a doctoral candidate at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). During his stay in the cities of S?úo Paulo and Salvador, Bahia, Dr. Lima used his fieldwork photography to register various moments of religious and secular performances. His dissertation, Candombl?® and Its Living Garments, touches upon issues of race, gender, and class, and the use of dress for religious and secular performances in S?úo Paulo and Salvador, Bahia.

AfroBrasil: Art and Identities has been curated to include two other distinct and inter-related exhibition sections. From lithographs to photography, the exhibition can be visited in any order so that different connections can be made and different perspectives gained.

With more than 20 years in the art industry, AfroBrasil: Art and Identities Exhibition is Dr. Lima's fifth and largest exhibition to date. At the moment, Dr. Lima also has his photography displayed at the offices of congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Calif.) in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. For more information on his work, please visit pauloplima.wix.com and afro-brazilian.com.

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