brutalist intensities

Flood - Redbull Station São Paulo Jun. 2016 ©Ignacio_Aronovich


Brutalist Intensities is a series of projects (A minute of silence, Flood, Brutalist Headphone, Urban Silence Cartography, Fade in Fade Out, and Luminescence) created during two months at Redbull Station residency in São Paulo. All these projects developed as an attempt to elaborate my sensory susceptibility to the city.  

Brutalist Headphone: about the listening weight (headphone, concrete, mp3-player, field record) 2016 © Ignacio Aronovich


A minute of silence - isolated glass box to install in noisy urban spaces

Fade In Fade Out / Urban Cartography of Silence  / Cartografia Urbana de Silêncio


The overlap of intensities brings into question the meaning of the urbanist development of São Paulo, which is close to collapse. An example of this collapse is the acoustic environment as a manifestation of intensive flows. Recent data indicate that 75% of complaints to the Environmental Prosecutor of São Paulo relate to high levels of noise and noise disturbance. These numbers denote the conditions to which our senses are exposed. The effect is the anesthetization of body, mind, and sensory matter, which are undermined daily by intensity of not only sound, but also smell, luminescence, and multiple sensory accumulations.

Like the city, Redbull's building, which was once a power substation, is crossed by force fields that impregnate its walls. Living in this building invoked intensive reminiscences in me, overflowing the memory of the physical space and contaminating subjectivity. Pursuing these multiple and intensive sensory layers lead to the projects I named Brutalist Intensities. They are an attempt to elaborate sensorial experiences through the intensities (sonorous, Luminous, olfactory, tactile and kinetic) that cross through my body in relation to space and the city, which are not always lived smoothly. 

Brutalist Intensities arise from bodily encounters with intensities that establish forces that suppress my existence. Ways of being affected by the territory habitat, its transit and occupation. The projects are based on a daily search for life openings confronting the sensory brutalism that surrounds us. In some ways, the pieces reveal an attempt to map disruptive forces, which are at the same time a desire to create anti-spaces opened to other intensities. They represent a search for access to various intensities that are out there, but are subdued by the brute daily coexistence with the metropolis. The proposal is to enable micro-perceptions present in the body and indicate paths in the sensory field that need to be invented as a set of tactics to slow down, rest, daydream, muse, and open fields of subtle intensity that have been taken by storm by the Brutalist effects of the city.

Brutalist Intensities proposes a sensory dialogue between body and environment. It observes the intensity through the body in a relationship with the territory, making use of simulation and dissimulation as tactics to maintain the ability to enhance the body and the life on.

São Paulo, 1st July 2016.