P’ARTE Ponder, practice, partake, perturb, provoke ART – Comparatistas – english version

P’ARTE Ponder, practice, partake, perturb, provoke ART

PI: Pénélope Patrix*

* P’ARTE is a horizontally-organized cluster, and as such, the scientific contents, decisions and directions of its research line are the equal responsibility of all its members; the PI (Principal Investigator) is responsible for the articulation and communication between the group and the CEC.

Composed of researchers connected to the areas of literature, performing arts, visual arts and design, P’ARTE has an interdisciplinary nature. As a cluster of the THELEME research group, it is based in the field of interarts and intermedia studies. It undertakes research in the domain of participatory art, performative and experimental art, and art intervention, which leads it to work on manifestations connected to poetry, dance, music, archives, performance, as well as on the intersections and links between different manifestations, formats and media in the context of current artistic practices.

P’ARTE aims to explore artistic intervention in the public space, and its impacts on everyday life. Members of P’ARTE share an interest in approaching the abovementioned topics via their concrete manifestations in society, which implies collection work, participation and immersion, as inspired by the methodologies of ethnographic fieldwork and action research. Members give attention to issues related to citizenship, hospitality and spaces of representation emerging from the current political and social (re)configurations.

P’ARTE also defines itself by its interest in emerging, non-canonical, alternative or antiestablishment expressions, produced by minorities and actors who hold peripheral or marginal positions in the public or artistic space – expressions that are often silenced, omitted, or whose visibility is considered dissident or undesirable by the prevailing institutions. Our collective research seeks to find modalities for “capturing” ephemeral, small, instantaneous, site-specific, “off-stage” manifestations, with the aim of reconfiguring methodologies and “ways of looking” at contemporary artistic practices, and creating a specific place to accommodate them in the academic field. In a society dominated by capitalism, we propose to search for alternative and disruptive actions, believing that “joy is the most serious thing in life” (Ernesto de Sousa, 1971)*.

That said, this research also takes account of public and spatial manifestations of anger, sadness and resistance, these “hidden transcripts” (James Scott) that are often disregarded by societies that promote transparency and positivity. The [P’] of the designation P’ARTE calls for the [p]ractice of arts through [p]articipation, [p]ondering, [p]artaking, [p]rovoction, [p]oetization, [p]erturbation, [p]eregrination… P’ARTE is an expression of belonging, but also of the possibility of rupture, exit, displacement (“parte” means to be part of, but also to break, in Portuguese). The actions undertaken by P’ARTE stand at the junction of all these elements, and in accordance with the following research lines:

PROVOKE ART: Identify, follow and question actions, practices and forms of artistic intervention in the public space, in urban contexts, considering its different scales (centres, peripheries, cities, villages, towns), and paying attention to the state of Europe and the world, in a comparative perspective. Examine experiences, narratives, counter-narratives and emerging spatial [re]configurations that create particular ways of inhabiting and occupying the public space. Observe situations in which art and politics act together, in moments of resistance, dissidence or provocation.

PONDER ART: Contribute to the elaboration of new theories and methodologies for the study of participatory and experimental arts, that hold marginal or minoritary positions – a set of categories that, whether or not they are used by the actors themselves, P’ARTE seeks to question, through tools and reflections coming from disciplines such as literary studies, philosophy, urbanism, sociology, anthropology, arts, performance studies and cultural studies.

TAKE P’ART: In addition to reporting and contemplating the work of other authors, P’ARTE develops its own practice, in the scope described above. It seeks to intervene directly in society, beyond the boundaries of academia (material and immaterial), through reflection and public debate on the artistic practices mentioned above, but also as an “aesthetic operator” (“operador estético”, a term created by the artist and cultural agent Ernesto de Sousa, 1921-1988, to describe his own action), through concrete intervention. Believing that research in the artistic domains in question necessarily implies a concrete commitment on the part of the researcher, P’ARTE intends to prompt the creation of events to highlight certain situations and reflect on them.


– Identify, follow, analyse, record and perform artistic intervention in the public space.

– Promote encounters and debates to produce original theories on contemporary performing and participatory arts, and in particular emerging, minority, alternative and peripheral arts.

– Develop new methodologies for research, dissemination and collaboration in the aforementioned areas, in particular regarding ephemeral, variable, unpredictable, collaborative, site-specific processes, which, for empirical and political reasons, tend to be disregarded.

Team (alphabetical order):

  • Marta Traquino (CEC-FLUL) – PhD, postdoc researcher
  • Pénélope Patrix (CEC-FLUL / CERILAC, U. Paris Diderot) – PhD, postdoc researcher
  • Sandra Camacho (CEC-FLUL / PhDCOMP doctoral program) – PhD student
  • Vanessa Montesi (CEC-FLUL / PhDCOMP doctoral program) – PhD student
  • Verónica Conte (CIAUD-FAUL / CEC-FLUL) – PhD, researcher


In addition to specific activities and contributions, such as congresses, workshops, roundtables, cultural events and publications, P’ARTE holds a series of cyclical activities, open to the public:

– P’ARTE Reading Group where fundamental or emerging texts on participatory, alternative and intervention arts are read and debated; and where central concepts in the field are discussed, such as “subculture”, “counter-culture”, “minor”, “minority” or “peripheral” art, “protest” or “marginal” cultures.
– P’ARTE DA CONVERSA: meetings in the form of a conversation and a show (microexhibition, screening or performance) with artists and actors of contemporary artistic and cultural life, both Portuguese and international. – Short Circuit Actions in the public space, with the collaboration of artists, collectives and local communities, to experiment, cross, interrupt and interrogate collective daily life.
– The P’ARTE Archive: based on the concept of “rogue archive” (Abigail de Kosnick), we seek to elaborate a digital archive (still a work in progress), that would be collaborative and multimedia, to record and give access not only to the collective activities of our group, but also to the practices of artists, collectives and communities involved in the field of performing, intervention and experimental arts, and who might be interested in collaborating. This archive also aims to feed the theoretical reflection on ephemeral and alternative practices, their specific inscriptions, materialities and temporalities, and the possibility of “recording” them.

All activities of the cluster are regularly disclosed and updated on the dedicated facebook page, and on the CEC website: Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Parte.Theleme.Cec/ CEC website (in English): https://cec.letras.ulisboa.pt/en/events/upcoming-events-events/

List of organized activities:

  • 3 October 2019: 1st session of the cycle P’ARTE DA CONVERSA – Documentary and Animation Cinema, with Filippo Biagianti & Simone Massi, Animavì Festival of Animation Cinema and Poetic Art (School of Arts and Humanities, Lisbon University). More information.
  • 27 September 2019: Event “Meu útero é uma bomba!” Ecofeminist poetry for the global climate strike (Crew Hassan, Lisbon). More information. > This poetry session was organized as part of the International Conference “Breaking Boundaries: Academia, Activism and the Arts (School of Arts and Humanities, Lisbon University). More information.
  • 21 March 2019: Event “Cor e Poesia”– celebration of the International Day of Colour and the World Day of Poetry, with readings of poetry associated with colour (bar O’Malta, Lisbon), a collaboration with the Portuguese Association of Colour, and the Colour and Light Research Group, Research Centre in Architecture, Urbanism and Design, Faculty of Architecture, ULisboa. More information.


partecec@gmail.com Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Parte.Theleme.Cec/ CEC-FLUL

webpage: https://cec.letras.ulisboa.pt/en/


* This phrase appears on the poster proposed by Ernesto de Sousa and made by Carlos Gentilhomem, as an integral part of the mixed-media Almada, Um Nome de Guerra (Ernesto de Sousa, 1971).

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  • Scott, James. (1990). Domination and the Arts of Resistance. Hidden Transcripts. Yale University Press. (Transl. to Portuguese. 2013. A dominação e a arte da resistência: discursos ocultos. Letra Livre).
This work is financed by national funds through the FCT - Foundation for Science and Technology, I.P., within the scope of the project UIDB/00509/2020 and UIDP/00509/2020.