Exhibition “Pedro e Inês” – Alter do Chão – 2008


Exhibition “Pedro e Inês”
Alter do Chão - 2008

Exhibition inaugurated in 2008 by the Honorable President of the Republic Cavaco Silva

“You were, beautiful Inês, at peace,
Of your years reaping sweet fruit,
In that deceit of the soul, swift and blind,
That fortune does not last long,
In the nostalgic fields of the Mondego,
From your beautiful eyes I never dry,
To the mountains teaching and to the weeds
The name you had written on your chest.”

Os Lusíadas, Canto III, est. 120

The chronicler Fernão Lopes stated that such love, which King Dom Pedro hears from Dona Enes, is rarely found in anyone.

The stones of the Castle of Alter do Chão bear witness to endless longing, the pain of tearing love, the regret of a premature absence with no return. In this space, the realm of Saudade begins to take shape, which will elevate Inês and Pedro’s love affair to a mythical level.

It was Saudade de Pedro who rescued Inês from the darkness and projected her eternally into the Portuguese imagination. It was the vivifying force of Saudade that made us aware of the union of two beings, far beyond the limits imposed by the finitude of their bodies. It was the redeeming power of Saudade that transposed the experience of private love to the sublimated scale of the universal, making it a perennial paradigm.

It is, in fact, unusual for the human capacity to operate this transformation and thus experience the fullness of capitalized Love. It is from this immeasurable force that the myth is nourished. It is in these myths that the soul of a people is forged.

Alter do Chão, July 2, 2008 Ana Mafalda Dos Prazeres Sadio

Pedro e Inês

in that deceit of the soul, led and blind

We all know that History itself is nothing more than a legend, certainly more grounded, but not free of fantasy and manipulated by interests that are not very historical and contemporary in its writing. History is made out of legends and myths are made out of history, and from there if anyone who tells a story adds a point, Maria Leal da Costa decided to put her own in this passionate and enthralling drama, which enthralled the West at the time (mid-14th century ) and which motivated great writers and artists to address it in writings, drawings, paintings, sculptures, scores, etc.

You were, beautiful Inês, at peace,
Of your years picking sweet fruit,
In that deceit of the soul, swift and blind,
That fortune doesn’t last long (1)

With her firm rejection of the ordinary, of the trivial, and also of the extravagant, of lust, as I had the opportunity to state in previous texts, Maria persists in a diluted figuration, understandable enough, full of symbolism and reproduction of readings. This unconventional and markedly contemporary side of his, as of clear transition to a future that has not yet been classified, of affirmation of synthesis – that hated by pretended vanguardism – between exhausted pure abstractions and figurativism, is here very present in this set of works.

The roughness of the materials and constructions point to the cruelty of a barbaric murder, with raw force… this caused his annoying death(2) , justified in policies, that is, in conjunctures, to which a sentimental refinement, perhaps plaingent, persists in condemning, because the eternity of a love is juxtaposed with any momentary benefit. I died, Amores, that Inês died (3) , and only the tragic nature of the act eternalizes an unparalleled passion, as if this poem of martyrdom-ardent love had been written by the fine sword that pierced the unfortunate woman.

Pluck from fine steel swords
Those who for good such a deed proclaim there.
Against a lady, O butcher breasts,
Are you ferocious and knights?(4)

And the sculptor’s irons crown and wound, in her chest you bury the impious irons(5) , accentuate a royalty that is only so, belatedly, by the spilled blood, and a love that only exists by the blunt pain, in perverse condition, of your with blood the cruel dye their irons.(6) The crowns are rough and aggressive, as was a death but also a posthumous magnificence, with vengeance and spite to accompany. O what a crown death crowns him(7) … if there was love, death crowned him.

Can’t the passion anymore
That what you should do;
I put my hand into it,
Who is weak-hearted(8)

That ferocious and wild heart, endowed with a bloody, almost incandescent light, which seduced Pedro and died in scattered flashes of agony, belonged to Inês, the Galician, from that Galicia still betrayed by them today, those who conquer the reason of the State , that of affection(9) dies, because I didn’t know how to defend myself, I gave myself all(10) , and that atones for each jet of light. Great love is never forced, it springs innately protected by Nike, for its structural veracity, like the sculptures by Maria Leal da Costa, thoughtful and impulsive in wise dosage. Of the scepter she is worthy, reigns in hearts. The sculptor enraptures us with her changing blinks, raises higher, sublimates the drama, that is, life, that is to say… death, because unstoppable sisters, opposing Siamese reasons, flash in flashes the verb that is worth it, what soar, love.

Tervuren, July 1, 2008
Joaquim Pinto da SIlva
1 Camões 2 Camões 3 Bocage 4 Camões 5 Bocage 6 António Ferreira 7 António Ferreira 8 Garcia de Resende 9 Camões 10 António Ferreira 11 António Ferreira 12 Bocage