Poles, hill and sky
by José Maneel Fernandes
A STARTING POINT...
A modulation beginning with a simple object of everyday urban use; a pole, a metal flagpole painted white. Separate elements coming together in a linear sequence which emphasizes a connotation - abstract and purified - of passage, of a movement through the streets.
THE LINKAGE TO TERRITORY...
A trench, cut along the width of the sloping landscape; on its spine a gathering of poles, vertical, beginning at the olive tree which was left behind, almost forgotten.
From afar, it is perceived as a texture, a scratch on the brown earth, a purified inscription of a lingering sentence - with continuity, geometry, a sense of the city.
Above it can be seen the circular tower of a ruin and the marble courthouse - spare flowerings in the city of hills and fragments which is Lisbon.
THE SKY AND THE DISTANCE...
Above this hill of poles, an airplane searching for the runway. The tree, the vertical lines, the earth and the incline - all of them pointing upward toward that other dimension, that fuller dimension.
And below, in the fog of traffic and the valley of Alcântara, the bridge, the Águas Livres Aqueduct, its arches coming one after the other, its pillars vertical as well. When we enter the city from this direction, we eagerly await the curve beyond which we will see the poles.
They rise up in profile, sudden, then multiply into the distance, apparently infinite, moving toward the very end.