Candomblé exploration

An artistic exploration of Candomblé through pictures and visuals

Candomblé is a rich ensemble of syncretist religious practices from Brazil. It is still practiced nowadays in modern Brazil and it originated from the mixing of different animist religions from West African slaves of many tribes, worshipping deities that identify with local natural elements. Its rituals and symbols mixed up with Christian festivities of the Portuguese rulers, so to maintain the secrecy around the practice, as slaves led gatherings were seen as rebellious from the owners.

The book comes from a collaboration with the visual and sound artist Lena Kilina, who spent years in Brazil for her Ph.D. and got fascinated by the practice. We are both capoeira practitioners, so we loved researching Brazilian traditions behind this amazing art: the rhythms of the drums, the words sung in the songs, the rituals and beliefs that influenced the development of capoeira.

As we took some artistic license we localised the name of our book to Shanghai, where it was printed and presented, and called it ‘Can道blé’ where 道 or ‘dao’ means ‘the path, the Way’ in Chinese and it is the pillar of Taoism: ‘the way of nature and/or the ideal way to live one’s life’.

You can find more information about candomblé in my articles here:

  1. What is Candomblé https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/IWknS7cVGrPv2eA1j9ag4w
  2. Introduction to the Orixas https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/ECmm9hmADjffF-FJJSIPxw

Or find more about our event and Lena’s work here https://www.instagram.com/kilbilina

October 2018