“I would prefer not to” or the temptation of absence   

Nelson Guerreiro


Starting from the meteoric essay by Jean-Yves Jouannais entitled "Artistes Sans Oeuvres - I would prefer not to" (2009), which deals with the paradoxical tradition of (people-) artists who do not create works for public enjoyment with place, date and time marked (in the case of performing arts). In the same way that they do not produce materially shareable creations (in the case of plastic arts), leaving no traces of their works for posterity, but also of writers who do not write in a way that can be published or whose writing disarms the conventions of their work and of the literature itself. These gazes extend backwards and forwards across multiple (inter-)/ (multi-) and (trans-) disciplinary fields. Person-artists who cross the lives of other people in public or private contexts.  In short, they were, are and will be, people-artists-creators who prefer "la joie de vivre" to guarantee the life of their works. From here and there, we would like to emphasize and question the notion and status of being an artist without having a work that is public or publicized, recognized, captureable, capable of being disseminated and of being archived or commodified. At the bottom of all the rhetoric that accelerates disruption and allows for all possibilities and freedoms, where are intangible artists placed?


Degree in Social and Cultural Communication at the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences of the Portuguese Catholic University of Lisbon (94-99). He was, between 2004 and 2018, a Professor at Escola Superior de Artes e Design das Caldas da Rainha in subjects such as: Performance Art, Contemporary Theatrical Currents, Happening & Performance, Cultural Mediation, etc. From 2001 on, he turned to creation: he developed several individual and collective projects in the fields of theater (with Teatro Praga, Tiago Rodrigues, Truta, Nature Theater of Oklahoma) performance art and literature. In 2014, he formed the artistic duo Vaivém with Filipa Brito. They have been developing a project on collecting in the Arts, entitled “Private Collection” whose first guest artist was: Vasco Araújo. At the moment, he investigates and lectures on “The (Dis)Format of the Conference-Performance as a Paradise Interstice between Thought and Arts”. With Filipa Brito he also co-founded BÓIA – Associação Cultural: they artistically co-directed several projects.