Aline Motta: (Other) Foundations

Still from: Aline Motta, (Outros) Fundamentos ((Other) Foundations), 2017-19. Video, colour, sound, 15:48 mins. Tofin, Yoruba, and Brazilian Portuguese, with English subtitles. Courtesy the artist.

Aline Motta: (Other) Foundations

March 22 – April 8, 2022
DARC Project Space

This exhibition is presented as part of Tending Land, a program marking the 40th anniversary of the Digital Arts Resource Centre (DARC), and bringing together several artists from around the world, whose works relate narratives about the ways in which land may be perceived, connected with, and cared for. The program honours the fact that questions concerning land and sovereignty are of particular significance in Canada, where traditional territories have been expropriated by the settler-colonial state, and historic treaties around Indigenous Peoples’ land rights were often reneged upon. The exhibition also draws links to the centrality of land in the struggles of many communities around the world, especially the global majority who have experienced colonialism in various guises, and who continue to endure its troubling aftermath today.

(Other) Foundations traces a journey between Brazil and West Africa, on which the artist embarked in a quest to discover her family’s origins. In this contemplative work, Aline Motta raises questions about belonging to ancestral homelands, especially when the bond to those terrains was violently severed due to enslavement and forced displacement. The work equally examines the fraught relationship with the terrains where descendants of enslaved people find themselves, navigating a freedom that is all too recent, weighed down by oppression that has lasted multiple generations. Combining footage capturing scenes from Rio de Janeiro, Lagos, and other cities linked to the influential African Yoruba culture, as well as installations, music, and the artist’s reflections, the work is a poetic and open-ended letter addressed to land, and specifically water surfaces. Lakes, rivers, seas, and oceans are presented here as mirrors that evoke the ties and parallels between places, communities, and experiences across time. Underlying the work is the proposition that, instead of longing for the fictions of solid pedigrees and national affiliations, there are alternative foundations that are fluid, connecting both here and there.

Tending Land is curated by Amin Alsaden.


Aline Motta (1974 – Niterói, RJ/Brazil) lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil. Aline earned a bachelor degree in Communication Studies at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and a Certificate in Film Production at the New School University/New York. She combines different techniques and artistic practices, merging photography, video, installation, performance, sound art, collage, and textile materials. She recently participated in groundbreaking exhibitions such as “Feminist Histories: artists after 2000” – São Paulo Art Museum/MASP, “Afro-Atlantic Histories” – MASP / Tomie Ohtake, “When the world changes”- Centro Cultural Kirchner, Buenos Aires, Argentina and “Rethink everything”, Les Rencontres de la Photographie, Arles, France. Her solo exhibition “Aline Motta: memory, journey and water” opened at the Rio Art Museum/MAR in 2020. In 2021, her video work was exhibited at the New Museum (NY) as part of the “Screen Series” program.


Aline Motta, photo by Estudio Ophelia.

Aline Motta: Artist Talk
April 1, 2022, 12:00 PM EDT

Please join exhibiting artist Aline Motta for an online artist talk around the work presented at DARC, and her practice more broadly.

For more information, and to receive the link to the talk, please register here.

Aline Motta: Mentoring Workshop
April 8, 2022, 12:00 PM EDT

Emerging media artists are invited to join Aline Motta as she leads a mentoring workshop. In this interactive workshop, participants can receive feedback on their work and are encouraged to engage in an open conversation.

For more information, and to join the workshop, please register here.


About DARC:
Digital Arts Resource Centre (DARC), formerly SAW Video, is a not-for-profit, artist-run media art centre that supports artists through programming, education, and access to equipment and mentorship. Our mission is to foster the development of a diverse community of media artists, actively promoting equity regardless of race, age, class, gender, sexual orientation, language, or ability. Our core principles are independence of expression, affordable access to all, and paying artists fair compensation for their work. Initially founded in 1981 as a project of the Sussex Annex Works (S.A.W.), SAW Video and SAW Gallery later moved to Arts Court and formed the multidisciplinary centre Galerie-SAW-Video. In 2001, SAW Video became independent from SAW Gallery, forming SAW Video Association. In 2020, the Digital Arts Resource Centre (DARC) became the organization’s new identity, expanding our digital presence online and asserting our role as a point of support for artists.

Digital Arts Resource Centre (DARC)
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DARC Project Space is fully accessible. More information on DARC’s access, here.