The Art of Cultural Exchange
Translation and Transformation between the UK and Brazil (2012-2016)
Paul Heritage, Ilana Strozenberg (Eds.)
by Ana Claudia Souza, Ilana Strozenberg (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Brazil), Andre Piza (Queen Mary University of London, UK), Eliane Costa (Getúlio Vargas Foundation (FGV), Brazil), Faith Liddell OBE, Graham Sheffield CBE (British Council), Gus Casely-Hayford, Heloisa Buarque de Hollanda (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ)), Jerry Brotton (Queen Mary University of London, UK), Simon McBurney OBE, Luiz Eduardo Soares (Rio de Janeiro State University (UERJ), Brazil), Madani Younis, Marcos Barbosa (Escola Superior de Artes Célia Helena, Brazil), Martin Dowle (British Council), Mércio Pereira Gomes (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Brazil), Paul Heritage (Queen Mary University of London, UK), Teresa Guilhon
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Can cultural exchange be understood as a mutual act of translation? Or are elements of a country’s cultural identity inevitably lost in the act of exchange? Brazil and Great Britain, although unlikely collaborators, have shared an artistic dialogue that can be traced back some 500 years. This publication, arising from the namesake research project funded by the United Kingdom’s Arts and Humanities Research Council, seeks to understand and raise awareness of the present practices of cultural exchange between Brazil and Great Britain in relation to their historical legacy. Presenting five case studies and eight position papers, this research-based project investigates how artists interpret, transmit and circulate ideas, ideologies and forms of knowledge with specific reference to the production of new ‘translations’ produced from and, where possible, between peripheral territories.
Written in accessible language, the case studies describe the experience of artists, managers and cultural leaders dealing with important challenges in the creative sector regarding the translation of creative and learning arts methodologies. Projects investigated are at the forefront of social arts collaborative practice, representing internationally influential initiatives that have had a demonstrable impact not only in urban centres and peripheries but also in isolated areas of central Brazil and the north of England. The position papers commissioned by the research from Brazilian and British academics and cultural leaders provide a remarkable variety of social, political, anthropological, historic and artistic perspectives of cultural exchange projects offering valuable experiences for those working in research, policy and for creative practitioners.
Paul Heritage is Professor of Drama and Performance at Queen Mary University of London and Artistic Director of the arts research centre People’s Palace Projects. As a producer he has worked with major UK arts institutions to bring leading Brazilian companies to British audiences, including Grupo Galpão at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, Grupo Piolin and AfroReggae to the Barbican Centre and Nós do Morro to the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon. Heritage was also Executive Producer of Rio Occupation London, a major project within the London 2012 Festival and co-curated the Olympic and Paralympic Cultural Forum, in Rio de Janeiro as part of British Council’s Transform programme. In 2004 he was made a Knight of the Order of Rio Branco by the Brazilian government.
Ilana Strozenberg is a Professor at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro’s School of Communication and Convener of the Advanced Programme in Contemporary Culture (PACC-UFRJ) at the School of Letters. She has a PhD in Communication and Culture, with an emphasis on Social Anthropology. Her recent research interests focus on cultural differences in Brazilian urban contemporary contexts, their relationships with the media and their impacts on the socio-political traditional hierarchies. She is Content Director at O Instituto de Projetos e Pesquisa (O Instituto), a social organisation dedicated to research on urban culture.