BoCA Bienal presented Berlin-based artist Agnieszka Polska, who premiered her first play The Talking Car on September 14 and 15 at Culturgest. In preparation for this event, the artist has been in residency at the Goethe-Institut in Lisbon.
Agnieszka Polska, winner of the National Gallery Prize (Berlin), is the author of hypnotic works that reflect on themes such as environmental and humanitarian catastrophes and offer immersive experiences, activating a critical social and individual conscience in a post-truth world. In this play Polska has a Portuguese, Polish and North American cast. On stage, a group of people try to get out of a speeding car. They are accompanied by a large-scale digital puppet, which sings and observes their struggles with tender curiosity. The characters in the car, on their way to an uncertain destination, explore a variety of roles, genders and emotional states. Repetitive music and hypnotic animations add to the melancholy of this immersive tale about the complex system of human and non-human agents.
BoCA - Biennial of Contemporary Arts is an international biennial of contemporary arts with a focus on transdisciplinarity (or extradisciplinarity). It establishes a synergy between cities (Lisbon, in dialogue with two other cities), cultural institutions (theaters, museums, galleries, material heritage), integrating actions in the public space, artistic territories (performance, performing arts, visual arts, music) and their respective audiences. At the same time, throughout each biennium, BoCA expands its activities through programming cycles presented in other Portuguese and foreign cities.
BoCA is supported by the Goethe-Institut of Portugal, which is one of the members of Anna Lindh Foundation's Portuguese Network. Founded in 1962, Goethe-Institut has a 60-year history of promoting Luso-German intercultural communication. It has two institutes in Portugal, one in Lisbon and the other in Porto. The Goethe-Institut in Portugal reaches 180,500 people a year with its many events, a diverse range of training courses, a wide range of information services about Germany and guidance and training for German teachers and students of German language and culture.
The Cultural Department is a catalyst for dialogue, exchange and contact between German and Portuguese artists and researchers. Current German trends are addressed and intercultural work in the fields of film, dance, music, theater, art, literature and translation is promoted. In cooperation with Portuguese partners, the Goethe-Institut organizes readings, exhibitions, conferences, film screenings and concerts, and also supports the participation of German artists in festivals.