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Campo Próximo, Convento São Francisco
Site-specific installation and concert

Matilde Meireles
Diogo Alvim

Presented in Convento São Francisco (Coimbra, Portugal) as part of Invasor Abstracto, a project by OSSO Colectivo running from Nov 2019 – Mar 2020

Campo Próximo (Near Field) is a sound installation that plays with the perception and construction of places. The installation creates dialogues between such places and the spaces in which they are presented. For this iteration, we drew a straight line through the territory that connects São Gregório in Caldas da Rainha (where OSSO Colectivo is based), and Convento São Francisco in Coimbra. We explored various locations along this line, searching for their particular qualities, and captured them using sound and image.

These materials are played back in the exhibition space, with a duration corresponding to the time it would take for sound to travel the same distance. Meanwhile, a microphone positioned in the centre of the room captures the sound recordings, and the result is played back alternately at each end of the room. This process repeats several times, modulating the sound properties and merging the recordings with the acoustic signature of the presentation space, as in I am Sitting in a Room by Alvin Lucier (1969). The dialogue between the various field recordings and the room accelerates until complete convergence – when architecture and audience become protagonists of the listening process.

Invasor Abstracto (Abstract Intruder) is a series of exhibitions and performances run by the multidisciplinary collective OSSO. Their projects critically reflect, explore and articulate ideas about Territory, in its aesthetic and political implications.

The collective has a new home in São Gregório, a village located in Caldas da Rainha municipality (Portugal), where it hosts artistic residencies, develops their projects and promotes a set of activities that engage artists with the local community.

Two installations and four performances will inhabit different spaces of the São Francisco Convent. Music, drawing, dance, photography, recorded sound, sculpture and video, highlight spaces of dialogue between the collective, their various creative territories and the spaces of this old convent.

Photos 4, 5, 6 © Nuno Martins
Photo 7 © Sara Morais