A FLOWER AMID THE RUBBLE
A visual and writing exercise by Miguel-Manso and João Manso
Writing before a single voice has been heard. Decanting vestiges of dreams on the verge of day, before it. Composing something amphigoric, suspended between worlds. Being broad, brief.
A Flower Amid the Rubble is a self-imposed written and visual exercise whose aim (above) is to involve general participation and open out to other forms of expression such as drawing, photography, dance, collage, video, sound recording, etc.
The poet Miguel-Manso and the filmmaker João Manso intend to produce, separately and during the course of a year, a joint collection of morning and everyday compositions in text and image that follow the same ritual. The protocol is simple and inclusive: to create a brief and immediate record at the moment of waking of dripped moments from a dream — soft instants that are still unattached to the daily plan and its narratives of hard and inevitable edges. The notes in a diary of events that occur before the diary.
What emerges may be random and unexpected or, on the contrary, may need a little preparation the day before (a notebook left open on the table, a sheet of paper in the typewriter, a tripod in the right place, a recorder ready to press play). Via a short document — a photographic shot, a fast video, a sound recording — that fleeting moment every morning between sleep and waking will be caught, as free as possible of mannerisms, convictions and any other routine traits. To see how, in these circumstances, we capture our surroundings and influence the composition — to see what kind of catch we find in the net in the first pools of wakefulness.
A Flower Amid the Rubble is the first Writing Working Unit carried out under the initiative Mode Diaries and results from the challenge made to Miguel-Manso by maat. The Mode Diaries initiative is based on diary-keeping as a form of writing, this initiative creates a field of interpretive potential in the context from which it originates: maat Mode 2020 — a programme of exhibitions and activities of a public, experimental and participative nature on the theme of “Prototyping the museum”.
Miguel-Manso is a poet. Published since 2008, his work is included in the portfolio of several publishers and appeared in a significant number of anthologies and literary magazines. He wrote, produced and directed the feature-length film Bibliografia (2013) with João Manso, and he has worked in theatre with the Cão Solteiro company and the stage director Susana Vidal. Since 2008, he has been invited to speak at literary festivals, lectures and talks inside and outside the country. His book Persianas (Tinta-da-China, 2015) has been shortlisted for the Sociedade Portuguesa de Autores, Glória de Sant’Anna, Pen Clube Português and Casino da Póvoa literary awards. His work has been reviewed in Portugal’s leading publications.
A graduate in film, video and multimedia communication, João Manso has worked as a director, assistant director and video editor since 2007, and his work has been shown at national and international film festivals. He directed the short documentary História Secreta da Aviação (Terratreme Filmes) in 2018. In 2013, he wrote, produced and directed the feature-length documentary/fictional film Bibliografia with Miguel-Manso. He has worked as an assistant director with various filmmakers, among which Margarida Cardoso, Bruno de Almeida, Miguel Gomes, Pedro Pinho and João Canijo.
It is proposed that an exchange of compositions may occur between those interested in putting the above into practice and the authors of A Flower amid the Rubble. By agreement (via DM on Instagram), a composition in analogue format may be sent by physical mail and, in exchange, a typed original received of one of the entries published on the Instagram channel.