A Clara
 3’26’’, Hd, Rio de Janeiro 2012

2011-A Clara from Paola Anziche on Vimeo.

The video was realized during my artist residency program in 2011 at Capacete, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo (BR).

The video documents a ritual in memory of the popular Brazilian singer Clara Nunes (1943 -1983), held every year on the first of November by a group of Candomblè lovers and practitioners, meeting at the cemetery São João Batista in Rio de Janeiro, and paying homage to her, bringing white and yellow flowers that cover the tomb and singing the singer's songs.
Clara Nunes was a Brazilian singer, considered one of the country's greatest performers; she was one of the few singers who managed to tie her name and personality so deeply to the history of samba and Candomblè.
She was the first Brazilian singer to talk about Candomblè in her songs, bringing the songs of the Candomblè religion into popular Pop music.
Candomblé is an Afro-Brazilian religion still practiced in Africa and prevalently in Brazil, it has an African origin (Nigeria, Togo, Congo, etc.) this religion consists in the cult of Orixa, which are not divinities, but spirits, emanations of the unique God, Olorun. The Orixas represent anthropological archetypes; certain colors, human activities, types of food, and medical herbs are associated with them. This religion came to Brazil from Africa, brought by African priests and believers who had been deported as slaves. The word candomblé (of Bantu origin) seems to have meant "Negro dances," and is also the name of an ancient instrument.
Clara Nunes freed this religion from its private ritual character and popularized it, manifesting a kind of cultural independence through Music.
In witnessing the Candombé participants, I concentrated my attention to detaisl in a short sequence. The hands, the clothes, the necklaces and the smoking mouths project into another dimension and return, through apparently documentary tracking shots, the cathartic dimension of the ritual.
The framing of the video is vivid, is not filmed from the front but from the side; it accompanies the songs, the gestures and seems to bring along flavors and smells to mix with the sound and its hypnotic cadence.