What: Fandata: New works by Mito Elias.  An implosion of watercolour, writing and collage. Multicultural Arts Victoria presents Fandata, a solo show of new works by Cape Verdean artist Mito Elias. The exhibition will feature a series of new mixed media spanning Creole oral fables to contemporary sayings. Mito Elias employs traditional calligraphy from different cultures across his works, that he cherishes as sacred pieces of cultural history.

Through the collage and imagery in his works, Mito Elias intends to distil the dimension of survival translated by “fandata”.

The works seek to explore the effect of immigration on language and how its form has adapted through cross-cultural journeys and through his own experience across diasporas.

“Immigration forces an almost constant verification upon us in our search for our identity and for a way to relate to our host culture.”

“Our mother tongue will always serve as our shelter and our inner voice. I seek to capture this ‘poesis mutantis’ [changed poetry] through light and sound.” Mito Elias, artist.

Fandata translates as “to search for” in Cape Verdean Creole and it is believed that it evolved from the English words, “to find out”.

Mito Elias was born in the city of Praia, Cape Verde, an archipelago off the western coast of Africa considered the birthplace of “creole” society on the Atlantic.

He studied at Ar.Co, the independent school of contemporary art and visual communications in Lisbon between 1989 and 1992. Mito Elias’s works span drawings, paintings, mixed media writing collage and video works which have been exhibited widely across the globe since 1983. His works are in major international collections including the World Bank (USA), BNU (Macau), Museu Afro Brazil – Sao Paulo (Brazil) and the Regional Government of Azores.

Where: Fo Guang Yuan Art Gallery, 141 Queen St, Melbourne VIC   

Fandata was produced by Multicultural Arts Victoria as part of a long-running partnership initiated with Fo Guang Yuan Art Gallery. Over the past six years, this partnership has provided a crucial platform for exceptional artists from refugee, indigenous and culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in Victoria who would otherwise have remained unrecognised.

The exhibited artists in this partnership are acclaimed artists in their home countries and Multicultural Arts Victoria is honoured to connect their important cultural heritage and artistic excellence with the wider community in Victoria.

When: 4 August – 12 September 2014  Opening reception: Thursday 7 August 2014, 6.30pm-8.30pm  Gallery Hours: Mon-Fri, 10am-5pm



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