IRINEU DESTOURELLES/ 16 selected videoworks from 2011 to 2020  
I am creole, black, African, European and I live in the UK. I spent my formative years during the 1980s and 1990s in the suburbs of Lisbon as Portugal constructed a democratic system that replaced nearly 50-years of dictatorship at home and ultra-colonialism in Africa. Looking back I feel that during those years I was under immense pressure to conform to Portuguese culture. I wonder to what extend I have in me the 'Fanonian' assimilated black parisian person. I wonder as to what happens on the inside of the outsider, for lack of a better word, entangled with a mainstream culture that disavows them. As I make work I allow the cognitive errors, the masochism, the tragedies that take place when dominant ideals seduce those they marginalise to take centre stage so I can speak of disquietude.  
[extract] Beat, Lyrics and Building Site, 2020
Weaves together four texts, an electronic industrial based music beat designed by Trepiche and background footage of a building site in the suburbs of Lisbon similar to the ones where most black men worked during my youth. In George Orwell's 1984 one of the Party's ministries produces low cultural products for the exploited proles. The texts in the video are embryonic versions of music lyrics that have an ideological content that demands that the individual loves the society that dominates him/her.
HD File, 16:9, 2 minutes and 41 seconds, colour, sound
[extract] Person Tumbling, Voice and text concerning a Perverted Hybrid Man, 2020
Composed of two versions of the same narrative, voiceover narrated in the 1st person in Portuguese and running text written in the 3rd person in English runs in parallel, and footage in slow motion of an individual falling which alludes to narrative being told. Maltisso L., simultaneously the narrator and the subject of the narration, who is classified an a hybrid in a society that has similarities with a colonial slave society where differences of status between social groups is integral to the fabric of language, after assimilating the language and culture develops a psychopathic character.
HD Files, two-channel, 16:9, 8 minutes and 47 seconds, b&w, sound
channel 1
channel 2
[extract] Auto-Retrato, Reportagem, e Ferias em Famila em Leopoldville e Quinxassa, 2020
Found footage of Portuguese people, possibly settlers from Angola, holidaying in what seems colonial and post-colonial Congo whilst the liberation wars in Portuguese Africa loomed close, is framed by the contorts of a deformed face and found sound from the first newsreel made in 1969 in the front of combat in the colonial war in Portuguese Guinea Bissau. Here, institutional and personal colonial documents and unrealistic self-representation juxtapose.
HD File, 16:9, 6 minutes and 56 seconds, colour, sound
[extract] Supernatural Forces, Mental Health and Detail from Indoors (Forças Sobrenaturais, Doença Mental e Detalhe de Interior), 2019
Footage of a bouquet of plastic flowers filmed outdoors is over-layered with running text written by Destourelles on social attitudes to mental health in a fictional context. The writings in Portuguese and English languages stand as a single text with its often unrigorous Portuguese or English translation depending on which language one takes to be the original. The text draws loosely on the findings included in two academic papers regarding social attitudes to schizophrenia and the state of democracy in Cape Verde which are interwoven with sporadic references to Portugal's socio-historical framework. These findings and references coexist illogically revealing a troubled author for whom the ex-colony and ex-mother-country have collapsed into one.
HD File, 16:9, 11 minutes and 27 seconds, colour, silent
[extract] Several Ways of Falling Ordered Differently, 2019
Performance based video where an individual falls several times to the ground whilst he attempts to control the ways in which he falls with every mosaic displaying the falls sequenced differently. Filmed in my father's vegetable garden in the suburbs of Lisbon where he plants tropical vegetables, imbricating space and memory, I understand this space simultaneously as a reference to the postcolonial and post-dictatorship context where I grew up Lisbon and a site of his enactment of nostalgia towards aspects of his youth in colonial Cape Verde.
HD File, 16:9, 4 minutes and 8 seconds, b&w, silent
[extract] One Hundred and Two Houses on Fire, 2019
Composed of drawings of houses consumed by fire from the inside displayed in succession. As a second generation immigrant the concept of home is ambivalent and with every house drawn I rendered the concept of home as something fragile, if not ephemeral.
HD File, 16:9, 9 minutes abs 43 seconds, b&w, silent
[extract] Ex-colonial Landscape with Different Filters, 2019
Single shot footage of a landscape from my native island of Santo Antão in Cape Verde, West Africa overlayered with a succession of different filters runs in parallel with a text that interweaves extracts from lyrics from 1980s and 1990s Portuguese pop songs with extracts from speeches made by the presidents of the two main opposing factions during the Angolan civil war (1975 to 2002 with interludes). Pop culture and post-colonial war that suggested different readings of the nature of Portuguese colonialism coexisted in Portuguese media during the 1980s and 1990s as the country attempted to forge a democratic European identity.
MiniDV transferred to HD file, 4:3, 4minutes and 30 seconds, colour, silent
[extract] Unevenly Spaced and Censored Anonymous Undergraduate Essay and Love for Gardens, 2018
An essay entitled Black Conceptual Visual Artists and Critical Reception that I commissioned to an online essay mill company runs over corrupted home-made digital footage of suburban home garden in London with key words crossed out rendering it non-personal and uncritical. With the reference texts that include Henry E. Garrett's The Equalitarian Dogma, in the first edition of the infamous Mankind Quarterly, a peer-reviewed journal set-up and published in Edinburgh from 1961 to 1979 as a counter response to the UNESCO's 1950s Race Question statements, and Charles Gaines' The Theatre of Refusal: Black Art and Mainstream Criticism (1993) the anonymous author wrote an essay critical of institutional racism which I censored.
HD file from MiniDV, 10 minutes and 12 seconds, 16:9, colour, silent
[extract] Glossary of Political Words - Almost One-hundred Definitions, 2017
Words that may be found in a general glossary of political words have been given alternative sardonic meanings. I speculate on ways in which Nietzschean and social darwinist ideas emerge within current public political discourse.
digital HD file, 16:9, 35 minutes and 39 seconds, colour, silent
[extract] White Balance Error and Nia (Subject with Straight Long Hair), 2017
A woman is closely scrutinised by what could be a black male gaze that she systematically rejects referencing traditional western conventions of feminine beauty. With camera assuming the gaze of the excluded who desires what is tabu I draw on psychoanalyst Frantz Fanon's claim that male colonized my find themselves desiring the colonizer's wife.
Digital HD file from DVCPRO HD, 16:9, 7 minutes and 48 seconds, colour, sound
[extract] Blurred Images of Two People Constrained by Time Fluctuating Between Acceptance and Rejection, 2016
A white heterosexual couple siting in a public space go through a wide range of behaviours from affection to aggression with sound from a Youtube video where US porn-star Lisa Ann responds to questions from her fans around the world. With their faces never fully visible, referencing Adam and Eve, the female actor feeds fruit to the male actor whilst both perform a range of emotional states inaccessible to a character once stereotyped.
Digital HD file from DVCPRO HD, 16:9, 4 minutes and 2 seconds, colour, sound
[extract] Parsing – First and Second Half of an Essay, with Blank Spaces and Mistakes, Running in Simultaneous, 2016
Runs what would have been, if words that denote status, time and place had not been removed, an informative essay I wrote regarding James VI of Scotland/James I of England and his son King Charles I's beliefs on the exercise of power. I am critical of my own and of generalised consumption and understanding of history heavily structured around hierarchical categories and 'great' individuals.
Digital HD file from original text, 16:9, 13 minutes and 22 seconds, b&w, silent
[extract] Review, 2016
With footage recorded from an hotel room in Accra, an essay left unedited is read in English by an open-source text-to-voice software application that makes errors every-time it reads African language based words. The essay, on the Dak'Art 2010 African Contemporary Art Biennial's exhibition at the IFAN Museum of African Arts in Dakar I visited the day before writing the essay in the hotel room, divulges on the uneasy relationship between african tradition and western technology.
Digital file from MiniDv tape, 4:3, 13 minutes and 13 seconds, colour, sound
[extract] Twenty-five Profiles – Extracts from Interracial Adult Marketing Material with Explicit Words Taken Out, 2015
Text based video work composed of phrases extracted from profile descriptions of female porn-actors listed on a website specializing on white-female/black-male interracial pornographic content. The phrases play with racial stereotypes and words with explicit content, but not only, have been replaced with black spaces.
Digital HD file from found text: 16:9, 11 minutes and 55 seconds, b&w, silent
[extract] New Words for Mindelo's Urban Creole, 2014
Displays neologisms, aimed at enriching the vocabulary of the substratum creole language in Cape Verde spoken in informal contexts. Based on my experience of living and working in my native Cape Verde the neologisms are made from names of Portuguese colonial administrators and names of Greek mythology characters and propose parallels between social dynamics that have emerged in the country since the end of single-party Marxist regime and the beginning of democracy in 1990 and colonial history.
Digital HD file from original text, 16:9, 10 minutes and 26 seconds, b&w, sound
[extract] Metathesiophobia, 2011
A cropped long single-shot of three faceless characters sitting at a table whom with repetitive actions split and pack the white powdery contents of a plastic container into small portions for individual consumption. The voiceover is an - at first - imperceptibly adulterated audiobook of Rene Descartes's 'Meditations on First Philosophy' (1641). Cape Verde's waters are an established route for trafficking drugs into Europe and many young Cape-verdians, rejecting creole traditions and emulating western cultural codes, dream of becoming successful drug barons.
Digital HD file from DVCPRO HD and found sound, 16:9, 100 minutes and 54 seconds, b&w, sound

Born (1974) in the Cape Verde islands I live and work in Edinburgh, UK.

2003 MA Fine-Arts Central St. Martins College of Art and Design, London, England, UK
1998 BA Fine-Arts Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
1992-1995 Studied Engineering Sciences at New University of Lisbon and Technical University of Lisbon, Portugal

solo exhibitions
2020 A Batida Que Faz-te Sujo (The Beat That Makes You Dirty), Círculo de Artes Plásticas de Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
2019 Subtitulizar/Subtitling, Project Space, Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Lisbon, Portugal
2017 Tainted Verbal, Transmission Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland, UK
2017 Unturning, Summerhall, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
2014 Autoestrangeirismo, Atelier Concorde, Lisbon, Portugal
2011 Thinking According to Rectangular Images, Portuguese Institute - Mindelo, Mindelo, Cape Verde [irdc]


group exhibitions
2019 Apa Kabar? (What's new?), Showroom MAMA, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
2019 South-South: Between Land and Sea Film Programme, Goodman Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
2019 Another Country II, City Art Centre, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
2018 Another Country, Alice R. Rogers & Target Galleries, St John’s Art Centre, Minnesota, USA
2017 Be Right Back, 8-10 Rhoda Street, London, England, UK
2017 A Glimmer of Freedom (Unsolicited Exhibition Program, Apexart, New York), Tarrafal Concentration Camp, Santiago, Cape Verde
2016 Being and Becoming: Complexities of the African Identity, UNISA Art Gallery, Pretoria, South Africa
2015 Telling Time [Special Exhibition], Rencontres de Bamako Biennale (10th edition), Mémorial Modibo Keïta, Bamako, Mali
2015 Customer Experience, Special Projects, VI Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art, National Centre for Contemporary Arts, Moscow, Russia
2015 Sex Macht Gut/ Sex Does Good, Sprechsall, Berlin, Germany
2014 Ilha de São Jorge, Fondazione Giorgio Cini, San Giorgio Maggiore island, Venice, Italy
2013 Southern Panoramas, Videobrasil 18, SESC Pompeia, São Paulo, Brazil [irdc]
2013 Escena Caboverdiana, Casa Africa, Las Palmas, Spain [irdc]


group screenings/festivals
2018 AfroScots: Glasgow School of Art, Scotland; and Edinburgh School of Art, Scotland, UK
2017 Áfricas Utópicas (selected works from the Associação Cultural Videobrasil Collection), Espaço Transversal da ArtRio 2017, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil [irdc]
2017 Bomb Factory Artist Film Festival IV, The Bomb Factory Art Foundation, London, England, UK
2017 AfroScots, Galerie de l'Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada
2015 Ilha de Sao Jorge: ICA London, England; and Hangar Bicocca, Milan, Italy
2015 Capture All, Transmediale, Berlin, Germany
2014 Arquitecturas Film Festival, Lisbon, Portugal

artist talks/ panel discussions/ symposiums/ collaborative projects
2017 The Plaza, Embassy Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (cp)
2017 Collective Blackness (Black Radical Imagination and LUX Scotland) Talbot Rice Gallery, University of Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (s)
2017 A Glimmer of Freedom, CITCEM - Transdisciplinar Investigation Centre, University of Porto, Portugal (s)
2017 Summerhall, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK(with Neil Cooper and Holly Knox Yeoman)
2017 Transmission Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland, UK(with Tiffany Boyle)
2015 Hangar Bicocca, Milan, Italy (with Stefano Rabolli Pansera)
2015 Hangar Artistic Research Center, Lisbon, Portugal (with Ana Balona de Oliveira and Manuela Ribeiro Sanches)
2013 Casa Africa, Las Palmas, Spain (with Orlando Britto Jinorio, Tchale Figueira, and Leao Lopes)
2011 Mindelo, Do We Have Culture? Public Meetings, Various Venues, Mindelo, Cape Verde (co-chair with Rita Lobo)
2015 Hangar Artistic Research Center, Lisbon, Portugal

2017 The Hope Scott Trust, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

published essays
2014 Carlos Schofied (1944-2012) Notes from the Year Before Last [Port /Eng] in 'Ilha de Sao Jorge', Beyond Entrophy, London 2014, pp43-54 [irdc]
2010 Perímetro < Diâmetro: Geometrização, Creolização, Corpos, e Aglutinaçoes [Port/ Spa/ Fren] in 'Horizontes Insulares', Gobierno de Canarias, Las Palmas, pp. 200-217 [ir]
interviews/ reviews/ etc.
2019 Campos, Cristina: Irineu Destourelles – Subtitling, Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Umbigo Magazine, Lisbon, p. 26.
2019 Fabiana, Rita: I am not here. I am here Notes on an accidental body-place,
2017 Cooper, Neil: Irineu Destourelles – Unturning,
2017 Garrido Castellano, Carlos: Organization, Engagement, Coloniality—Hangar: Centro de Investigação Artística in Lisbon, Field Journal (issue 6)
2016 Corrigall, Mary: ‘Being and Becoming: Complexities of the African Identity’ at UNISA Art Gallery, Pretoria,
2015 Nolasco, Ana: Entrevista a Irineu Destourelles, IADE


ⓒ 2020