LETTER BY BRUNO SAITO:
São Paulo, February 22nd, 2019
Bruno Yutaka Saito
Culture and Art Editor at Valor Econômico, Brazil
Former Movie Critic and Journalist at Folha de Sao Paulo, Brazil
Memory, affection, displacement, and borders are some of the recurring elements in Juliana Mundim's work. What first caught my attention in her work, around 2005, was the ability to transform into images and sounds, elements for the senses, an impalpable feeling of loss, of not belonging to any possible place.
More than a personal diary or a restricted universe, her videos, drawings, movies, and playlists, evoke the impossibility of satisfaction or perfection. There is always a fugitive element evoked, like the word that is not said or found.
It is necessary to keep in mind that Juliana's work accompanies decisive moments of the very development of technology and the capture of moving images, the banalization of the visible, the turn of the twentieth century to the XXI. Pocket Films for Travelers, for example, anticipates in almost 20 years the Instagram Stories. They are snapshots of everyday scenes on the planet, and at the same time they are destined to be consumed as pills to travelers, they have a perennially, a record of the small historical moment that will never repeat itself, of fragmented memories of times impossible to be withheld.
Proust in audio-visual pills, serving the beauty and subtleties of the world, without the shadow of egos or pre-defined meanings.
ORIGINAL IN PORTUGUESE:
Memória, afeto, deslocamento e fronteiras são alguns dos elementos recorrentes no trabalho de Juliana Mundim. O que primeiro me chamou a atenção em seu trabalho, por volta de 2005, foi a capacidade de transformar em imagens e sons, em elementos para os sentidos, um impalpável sentimento de perda, de não pertencimento a nenhum local possível. Mais do que diário pessoal ou um universo restrito, seus vídeos, desenhos, filmes, playlists, evocam a impossibilidade da satisfação ou da perfeição. Há sempre um elemento fugidio evocado, como a palavra que não é dita ou não é encontrada. É necessário ter em mente que o trabalho de Juliana acompanha momentos decisivos do próprio desenvolvimento da tecnologia e da captura das imagens em movimento, da banalização do visível, da virada do século XX para o XXI. Pocket Films for Travelers, por exemplo, antecipa em quase 20 anos as Stories do Instagram. São instantâneos de cenas cotidianas planeta afora, e ao mesmo tempo em que se destinam para serem consumidas como pílulas aos viajantes, possuem uma perenidade, um registro do pequeno momento histórico que nunca mais irá se repetir, de memórias fragmentadas de um tempo impossível de ser retido. Proust em pílulas audiovisuais, a serviço da beleza e das sutilezas do mundo, sem a sombra de egos ou significados pré-definidos.
LETTER BY RENATA LEMOS:
Melbourne, February 28th, 2019
Renata Lemos Morais is a Brazilian author, researcher and occasional art curator.
She is currently based in Melbourne.
As a Brazilian academic and researcher who have dabbled in art curation, I have followed the work of Juliana Mundim over the years with keen interest. Many have explored the relationship between her work and broader political and social scenarios such as the multiple effects globalization and digital technologies have had on our private and public lives. However, what I would like to say about her art is different. My response to her work is visceral and speaks directly to my own identity as a global nomad who has been living in different countries and continents in a continuous journey of permanent detachment. This feeling of groundlessness and homelessness can be quite disorienting at times, and Juliana's work has in many ways provided me with a fresh new sense of direction.
Her work is almost therapeutic to me: it tells me it is ok to float around without a map, to have no roots, to refuse to fit into the mold of a Latin American identity while at the same time replacing it with no other fixed identity. Her work transpires the struggle of global nomad living while at the same time expressing how utterly light and delicate this same life can be. Her work captures a luminous, ethereal aesthetics that is truly transversal to any place, society or culture. The entirety of her work - photography, film, video, animation, digital curation, and publishing - is able to push us directly into the realm of the universal. This aesthetic drive toward the ineffable vastness of life on Earth is the force propelling her extensive world traveling, the impulse beneath her continuous wandering around the world, which is crucial to her visual narrative. I intend to continue to observe her new trajectories of aesthetic exploration because they have never ceased to amaze me.