Faiá Martins is native of Curitiba city, Brazil, and started her career in 2016, developing a work in traditional painting inspired by diasporic manifestations in brazilian land, giving special attention to religious syncretism, gypsyism and candomblé, the religion in which she was raised in and iniciated in 2018. Studies
Visual Arts at the School of Music and Fine Arts of Paraná and her main expositions was Ubuntu at Memorial de Curitiba (2016), Universitary exhibition at EMBAP (2016 - 2017), LBTs women in the art world at UNESP – Ourinhos (2018), Cubic - Bienal Curitiba International (2019) and Black Awareness Week
at UENP – Jacarezinho (2019 - 2020)
My research in painting aims to create a dialogue with sacred art and contemporary brazilian art, following the steps of Carybé, Mestre Didi, Djanira Motta and Abdias do Nascimento. Born and raised in a miscegenated household at the Curitiba’s outskirts, my relationship with the graffiti and the sacred icons
of the church and the candomblé took place from a very early age and today, in the quest to understand my place in the world, I try to transfer the feeling religious ecstasy and intimacy with the street into a space that was previously denied to us, in order to help fill a pictorial gap within the tradition of brazilian
sacred painting, proposing solutions and provocations, focusing on issues such as racism, white-washing and the religious syncretism problematic.
Violence is expressed in many ways, especially in subtle ways. For centuries, art was the means used to establish and validate power narratives and the sacred pictorial construction was a crucial point for the brazilian idea of what Orisha is. In 1826 it was the first time the word candomblé was written in a document.
From Africa to America, the cult of the Orixás suffered several adaptations and its devotees also had to adapt to the new times. Black people who were formerly compulsorily baptized as soon they arrived in brazilian territory and converted to Christianity began to attend Sunday masses without fail to play for their
ancestors whenever possible at the cost of police persecution and arbitrary arrests. Today, even with all the freedom of worship won, there are still those who use the syncretism that was used to protect the cult: St. Barbara is Oyá, Ògún is St. George, Osoosí is St. Sebastián, etc.
As an artist and Ìyáwò (title given to the ones who got iniciated) I set out to work on the various facets and problems of this syncretism that has been the subject of countless discussions within the African-based religions in Brazilian territory.
Ogún, orisá lord of metals, metallurgy, war and technology. In Brazil, constantly syncretized with St. George. From the arrival of the yoruba in brazilian lands to the present year, changes have taken place, especially with regard to how the life of initiates in the cult of orishas works.
The ancestral and “archaic” bias of the orisás interests me and enchants me, after all, this is the mystic that we seek when faced with candomblé. But if we, initiated children, evolved with the world, how would our ancestor who lives in our orí (head) not be aware of those changes? How could the orisha of technologies
not have followed the technological advances in the world, having been responsible for the great technologies that took humanity forward? Influenced by the literary works “Tent of Miracles” by Jorge Amado, “American Gods” by Neil Gaiman and by digital illustrations by visual artist Luang Senegambia, I
started this project that locates this “new Ògún” in the 21st century. Mixing outdated technologies with new technologies, I decided to follow the path of traditional painting in an unconventional support so that the dialogue is consistent either through the discourse with an anthropological tone or by the materiality
of the work, as I believed it would be a good tone to paint the master of metals in a metal plate, taking the opportunity to explore the behavior of paints on this surface, also mixing characteristics of Catholic iconography (like the dragon of St. George) and the salute to that deity in binary code.