Helena Almeida, Ouve-me, 1979
Helena Almeida

Helena Almeida (*1934 †2018, Portugal) was based in Lisbon. A sculptor’s daughter, Almeida began her career as a painter, turning her canvases into three-dimensional objects. The first exhibition of her work was shown in 1967 at Galería Buchholz in Lisbon. She employs her own body to question spatial constructs and the relationship between artist and viewer using photography and film to share her performative studio practice with an audience. The resulting images both reveal and obscure the artist’s presence.

In Ouve-me (Hear Me), the artist is behind a see-through gauze screen, seemingly performing from within the ‘canvas’. She sucks air in with her mouth, and with it the gauze. She writes “ouve-me” behind the gauze, then crosses it out with a pen held in her mouth. As in many of Almeida’s works, the border between visibility and invisibility, appearance and disappearance, speech and silence is a subject of exploration.

Ouve-me is part of the 1978/79 trilogy Sente-me, Ouve-me, Vê-me (Feel Me, Hear Me, See Me).

Courtesy Helena Almeida

Document media
Video, b&w, silent, 4:50 min

Issue date

gaze, in/visibility, painting/drawing