“Live Uncertainty,” 32nd Bienal de São Paulo
              Kiki Mazzucchelli
              Almost a year ago, when chief curator Jochen Volz announced his proposal for the 32nd edition of the Bienal de São Paulo, Brazil was already undergoing a severe political crisis, with the country split between those who supported the democratically elected coalition government and those who called for the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff. Titled “Incerteza Viva” [Live Uncertainty], the exhibition opened to the public only a few days after Rousseff was permanently ousted from office in a controversial trial based on corruption charges that paradoxically ensured that political sectors known to be corrupt remain in power. In his inauguration speech, unelected president Michel Temer stated that uncertainty had finally ended, but the demonstrations that have been taking place almost daily across the country since Rousseff’s impeachment seem to point to the contrary. During the biennial’s preview, a group of artists wearing black t-shirts with slogans from the late dictatorship days— such as Eu quero votar pra presidente [I want to vote for president] from the Diretas Já [Elections Now] campaign, and the more up-to-date Fora Temer [Out Temer]—took to the Oscar Niemeyer pavilion that hosts the exhibition. Apart from a few scuffles with members of the public, the protest …

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