Fluid Inspiration

Mariana, a Miserável
Mariana is a Portuguese illustrator who studied Graphic Design and has dedicated herself to ‘a miserable life’. She has produced several solo and group exhibitions, both in Portugal and abroad, worked for big national brands, renowned studios & publishing houses, featured her works in the national press and international design publications, etc.

She has been a source of inspiration, more evident and present in this ‘Fluid Exploration’ project than ever before. While working on my illustrations for ‘Os Lusíadas’, I was influenced by her own drawing style.


The Dada Movement
While reading the ‘Dada Manifesto’ by Tristan Tzara as research for another project (CTS), I came across some statements that related to my ideas in Fluid Exploration. “The magic of a word – Dada – which has brought journalists to the gates of a world unforeseen, is of no importance to us. (…) DADA DOES NOT MEAN ANYTHING.”

The idea of words that are so rich in meaning but don’t actually mean anything really interested me. It made me re-evaluate my theme in a different perspective – ‘Os Lusíadas’, a poem so rich in meaning, so appreciated and valuable, is really just a set of words, a story that someone once wrote, a myth.

‘Fountain’, Marcel Duchamp (1917)

The idea of taking something and changing its place, position, purpose and/or meaning was also something that interested me. I thought of ways I could apply this to my project, like changing the order of the words in the poem so they would mean something completely different, or playing with the sound of the words.


Surrealism & Magritte’s Ceci n’est pas une pipe
Coming from Dadaism, I also looked into the surrealist movement. Although slightly different, this inspired me in a very similar way to Dadaism.

Again, the idea of something not being what it seems (as in the ‘Fountain’) seemed to be quite interesting but, in this particular example, Magritte was also reflecting on the notions of language and metalanguage and this is why I was drawn to this painting.

It obviously depicts a pipe; however, that is not a pipe, it is in fact the representation of a pipe. To say the thing and its representation are one and the same would be wrong. This is what I was hoping to explore – the distance and relation between the thing and its representation – and perhaps use that in my project as well.


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