Milton Camilo

Sfidando la “realtà” a colpi di pennello

La mia arte racchiude tensioni che sono alla base di concetti, identità ed esperienze; lo scopo è quello di sfidare il pubblico, ponendolo di fronte a convinzioni sulle quali non ha ancora riflettuto. Basti pensare all’immagine della donna, una figura per me dotata di straordinaria forza (empoderamente); eppure, siamo abituati a considerare femminile tutto quello che ci sembra “piccolo” e indifeso.
Brazil, Southern America

Story by Milton Camilo. Translated by Anita Landolfo
Published on November 7, 2022.

This story is also available in GB br fr



Sono un pittore e un artista afro-brasiliano, attualmente vivo in Germania e attraverso la mia arte metto in discussione le esperienze vissute in Brasile e in Germania negli ultimi 20 anni. Mi focalizzo, in particolare, sul ruolo di genere e sulle discrepanze tra quello che ci hanno insegnato e quello che esso è realmente.

Sono cresciuto in un quartiere popolare di Rio insieme a mia madre, un genitore single che ha ispirato la mia visione delle donne e, provenendo da una famiglia matriarcale, sono state proprio loro ad insegnarmi tutto quello che so, incluso il significato del matriarcato nero in Brasile con i suoi riti. Ad esempio, quando il cibo scarseggiava, io e la mia famiglia andavamo a raccogliere erbe; tuttavia, per farlo è necessario conoscere la differenza tra erbe commestibili e velenose, concetto che ho appreso quando mi fu spiegato che è possibile trarre beneficio da alcuni elementi presenti in natura. Ancora una volta sono state le donne ad insegnarmelo, non gli uomini, e tutto ciò ha avuto un grande impatto su di me. 

Ed è grazie a tali insegnamenti se oggi, ai tempi del coronavirus, riesco ad andare avanti con la mia vita credendo fermamente alla conoscenza del matriarcato, una vera saggezza tramandata per generazioni. Il termine portoghese empoderamente (emancipazione)[1] descrive il potere della crescita e del riscatto e, con riferimento alle donne e alla comunità matriarcale nera in cui sono cresciuto, ne indica l’emancipazione e la capacità di aver sviluppato delle strategie di sopravvivenza con le proprie forze.

Grazie all’educazione ricevuta, la donna è per me una figura estremamente forte, indipendente e potente che si distacca dagli ideali di bellezza pensati per l’uomo forte, che la dipingono come una donna bianca, fragile e piccola. La mia arte è anche influenzata dall’esperienza personale, legata al genere e all’identità. Quando avevo 19 anni iniziai danza classica in Brasile, in un tempo e luogo in cui non era socialmente accettabile l’idea di un ballerino uomo; infatti, nel mio quartiere a Rio iniziarono a considerarmi gay, sebbene avessi sempre affermato di amare chiunque, a prescindere dal genere. 

Sono queste tensioni ed esperienze tangibili ad essere racchiuse nella mia arte; lo scopo è quello di sfidare il pubblico, ponendolo di fronte a convinzioni sulle quali non ha ancora riflettuto. Ad esempio, gli artisti del diciannovesimo secolo dipingevano donne nude e distese su un divano, quasi come fossero l’offerta di un rito dedicato agli uomini. Al contrario, come già ribadito, la mia visione della donna è legata all’empoderamente; per questo motivo, ribaltando ogni stereotipo e dimostrando che il genere non è altro che un concetto fluido, nei miei dipinti sono gli uomini ad essere rappresentati come soggetti nudi, e quindi bellezze fragili. Agli occhi di un attento osservatore, tale rappresentazione può essere letta in chiave critica, poiché crea un luogo in cui “la questione identitaria, le culture, il tempo e lo spazio possono essere contestati e cambiati perpetuamente, prendendo forma di una domanda aperta alla quale non si potrà mai rispondere a pieno”. [2] Spero che, attraverso la mia arte, le persone inizieranno ad interrogarsi, riflettere e decostruire concetti che sembrano “normali” comprendendo che, contrariamente a quanto si crede, il genere non è soltanto binario, così come la donna non è una figura “piccola” e indifesa come siamo abituati a vederla. Al contrario, è una figura dotata di straordinaria forza (empoderamente). 


Footnotes

[1] Emancipazione

[2] Per maggiori informazioni visitate il mio sito web: http://www.miltoncamilo.de/index.php


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Milton Camilo

Milton Camilo

Photo Credits: Suilian Richon

Hey, I am Milton Camillo. I am a 50-year-old Afro-Brazilian dancer and artist from Rio who emigrated to Germany more than 20 years ago. I am currently living in Wuppertal and focusing on my paintings. Within them, you can often find a certain sense of melancholy, a grasp of what is described by the Portuguese word “Saudade”. With my paintings, I am breaking up the normalized structures that have been taken for granted by the grown-ups in comparison to children, where everything is still fluid and possible. In that sense, they can definitely be understood politically.

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