The catalogue is the first comprehensive survey about the works and projects by the Brazilian artist and activist, spanning 1991 until 2015. It also includes unpublished artist's text by Alves, and essays by Pedro de Llano and T. J. Demos.
The Long Road to Xico, 1991–2015 is the first monograph of Brazilian artist Maria Thereza Alves, and the outcome of her solo show at the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville in 2015. It gathers more than twenty projects realized between 1991 and 2015, including rarely viewed early works that help us see her most recent production from a new perspective. This publication also collects a selection of Alves' s writings and contextualizes her work in the political and cultural debates from the 1980s, when she became an activist—in the United States and Brazil—and an early participant in discourses around “postcolonialism” and “ecology.” Together with these materials, the book contains essays by the editor, Pedro de Llano, and T. J. Demos, professor of art and visual culture at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and author of Decolonizing Nature: Contemporary Art and the Politics of Ecology (2016). Containing an exhibition history and bibliography with a record of Alves' s activities in art, literature, and politics since the late 1970s as well, The Long Road to Xico, 1991-2015 establishes itself as the main publication on the artist' s work to date.
Published following the eponymous exhibition at Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo, Seville, from January 30 to May 31, 2015.
Maria Thereza Alves (born 1961 in São Paulo, lives and works in Europe) has worked and exhibited internationally since the 1980s, creating a body of work investigating the histories and circumstances of particular localities to give witness to silenced histories. Her projects are researched-based and develop out of her interactions with the physical and social environments of the places she lives, or visits for exhibitions and residencies. These projects begin in response to local needs and proceed through a process of dialogue that is often facilitated between material and environmental realities and social circumstances. While aware of Western binaries between nature and culture, art and politics, or art and daily life, she deliberately refuses to acknowledge them in her practice. She chooses instead to create spaces of agency and visibility for oppressed cultures through relational practices of collaboration that require constant movement across all of these boundaries.