Posted by: guyveloso | 5 de June de 2017

Biennial of the Americas. “Penitents”




Posted by: guyveloso | 24 de May de 2017

Dança dos Egunguns, Itaparica-Bahia

Ritual dos Egunguns, Itaparica-Bahia, 2011.

Ritual dos Egunguns, Itaparica-Bahia. Slide, 2011. Foto: Guy Veloso

Posted by: guyveloso | 22 de May de 2017


Se no começo detectamos um documentarista clássico girando em torno de seu objeto, com o passar dos anos, do conhecimento e da intimidade acumulados, a fotografia de Guy Veloso deixou de representar os rituais para apresentá-los. Essa mudança, que pode parecer sutil, é na verdade a passagem do fotógrafo documentarista para o artista visual. A fotografia deixa de ser apenas um suporte onde se grava impressões, para se tornar extensão da sua imersão profunda nesse universo. Deixa de ser relato de mão única para ser a expressão legítima e dialógica de um encontro com o outro, com o inominável, com o divino – Eder Chiodetto, curador.

Umbanda, Paraty-RJ, 2016. (c) Guy Veloso.

Foto (c) Guy Veloso. Ritual de Umbanda, Paraty-RJ, 2016.


Posted by: guyveloso | 12 de May de 2017


Ficamos com os pés acima do chão, suspensos, com os olhos fixos no real/irreal que nos desestabiliza para que pensemos e percebamos a cultura religiosa que se faz na diferença, na interseção de dor, crenças e fé – Marisa Mokarzel, curadora.


Exu. (c) Guy Veloso, Belém-PA, 2015.

Posted by: guyveloso | 9 de May de 2017


Guy Veloso transforma os penitentes em forças que nos atingem no centro da nossa brasilidade, na nossa essência, no cerne do que é ter nascido em terras brasileiras e toda a sua mistura de raças, de credos, de religiões. Somos penitentes em uma terra de alegria nefasta. Uma alegria que nos anestesia como se fossemos as costas sangrando dos penitentes – Paulo Marcos M. Lima, fotógrafo e professor.

Penitentes. Bahia, 2017.

(c) Guy Veloso. Série Penitentes (2002-2017), Juazeiro-Bahia, 2017.

Posted by: guyveloso | 2 de May de 2017

Veloso’s book text. 2017

The souls are hungry and their food is prayer.

(Guy Veloso)


The Photographer from Pará, Guy Veloso possesses a rare quality: very early in life he could define his theme of interest in the field of Photography and has been keeping it avidly and that’s the way it will be forever.

Guy Veloso. Livro da editora Ipsis. 2017.

Guy Veloso. Livro da editora Ipsis. 2017.

The methodic research of such a complex theme as the Brazilian religious manifestations has transformed; him and his photographic work


If, in the beginning we detect a classic documentary maker spinning around his own object, as the years pass by with accumulated knowledge and intimacy, Guy’s photography has stopped representing the rituals and started presenting them.


This change is truly a ritual of passage; the documentary photograph becoming the visual artist.


Photography leaves its role as a support art where one only records impressions, to becoming an extension of his deep immersion in this new universe. It leaves behind its one-way documenting to being the legitimate and dialogic of one encounter with the other, the unnamable with the Divine.


“Earth in trance”. The title of Glauber Rocha’s movie, most specifically the idea of trance, of the ecstasy of religious faith was the keyword that has given direction to the photography in this book, picked from the almost infinite archive of the artist.


The idea of having the keyword trance for our edition came to me after realizing how the devotees from the most varied religions search for ways to transcend reality.. Religion, from this point of view, would serve as a refuge, a sacred place of gathering and comfort.


Marked by the most varied gestures, clothing, scenarios and rites, all the religions crave for contact with their Divinities, as named, after searching thru Guy’s archives as “Trance”.


It’s intriguing to observe Guy’s photographic archive evolves; as his photographs start becoming more organic in facing their object. Evolving to the point where object becomes subject, demolishing frontiers between the artist and the theme. The object becomes a mirror. In a vertiginous flow, the light, color, texture and movement becomes an emphatic representation of the Divine, the Transcendent. For that, the act of photography leaves the door to chance consciously open.


When the edition was completed, we decided to have a conversation in Belém, so I could go deeper on some points regarding his intense investigation on religion in Brazil. To my surprise, when I asked how religion had come into his life, the movie “Earth in Trance”, from Glauber Rocha was his response. As I was re-reading the transcript of our interview I realized that, in this case, no one better than the author could describe his own experience in creating this book.


First Pilgrimage


My life changed when I started watching movies about the backwoods, such as the ones of Walter Salles and Glauber Rocha. They gave me the feeling that “I had to get to know this better”. I hadn’t been to the Northeast yet as a photographer, only as a child. I went to my first pilgrimage at “Juazeiro do Norte”. That was just fantastic; it got stuck in my mind. That was when I started to see that the great majority of pictures I had were not from Belém, they were from a bit of the city bonded to religiosity. That was when I took this theme for myself and which I may take for the rest of my life. I have photographed my first pilgrimage in 1988




I come from a family of Lawyers, but they have always influenced me in the arts field. My aunt Andrea Benchimol is a painter. I used to get those painting collections from the newsstand and then, when I turned seven to eight years old, I started painting. I still have some of these paintings from that time. After that I gave it up.


Today I like to see it as the naive style I had that time. I loved the art classes and I had the best of teachers, Afonso Medeiros, who is now a professor at the Federal University of Pará, and who was, at that time, my school teacher. I can still picture him describing Michelangelo’s Moses. I was only 15 and liked Volpi already. I was aware of the week of Modern Art. While others used to study math, I was studying arts.


I also remember that when I was 14, I left the house all by myself, locked the door behind me, and went to Caetano Rufino street, and four blocks ahead I was at “Teatro da Paz” to admire Luiz Braga’s exhibition. I was taken by that. It was my first exhibition and it was quite a shock! Later I was influenced by an uncle who lives in Rio, Andre Costa dos Santos, who had a manual camera and taught me how to use it. And finally at age 17 I got my first camera, a Nikon N2000.


I passed the test for Law at that time and, at the same time, I started photographing. I guess one of the reasons was to escape a little from the formality of law school. I graduated with a Law degree, knowing deep inside that it was not for me…


I took a photography course in Belém with someone I had never met, a guy from Sao Paulo named Fernando Del-Pretti. It was a week-long course and he taught me all the technical aspects of photography. I used to photograph the city using the influence I had from Luiz Braga and Cartier-Bresson. That was a time when Belém wasn’t violent so I could walk all over taking pictures of everything.


During law school, photography was parallel to it. I used to take pictures of the city and “Cirio de Nazare”. I have pictures of that time, since 1989. Another remarkable influence was my friends from FOTOATIVA, founded 33 years ago by Miguel Chikaoka.


Something that had impressed me a lot, was when I was 23 years old and decided to follow the Santiago Path in Spain.


I walked all 800 km in 37 days and when I got back I was deeply changed. I returned being sure that Law was not for me. I wanted to do something artistic, and couldn’t decide at that time if it was advertising, as I have always liked to write, or photography, or maybe both…I have worked in an advertising agency. I was also a public agent, and with   that, I could pay for my exhibitions, trips and could also start investing in those projects. Today I am a photographer and have left all the rest behind.


My first exhibition was a collective in 1989, with Fernando Del Pretti. We shared the Angelus Art Gallery at “Teatro da Paz”. It was all about pictures of Belém.

The first individual exhibition was not until 10 years later. I like to be involved in projects that take years to mature before being exhibited.


Juazeiro do Norte


At that time I was already a mystical person, which I still am. The religiosity of those people made my faith stronger, and also moved me and enriched my pre-existent immaterial culture. Some of the pilgrims believed that Juazeiro is the New Jerusalem and that the world will end there.


These millennium concepts touch me very strongly for I have lived my teenage years during the 80’s under the imminent danger of a nuclear war. Well, at least that was what the media was portraying, and it interested me a great deal, for that is also religious from my point of view.


This is something I still shoot: People and communities who believe in the end of times. Some of them have already set a date. There is a man who has set it many times, but  thank God he was wrong. I have him on photos and videos. I photograph him every year. He still uses a cart pulled by a donkey and goes everywhere preaching, for that people call  him “ The Prophet.”


Since 1988 I have been on every pilgrimage during “Finados” (a holiday to honor the death) in Juazeiro do Norte.


I intend to keep doing that. Something intriguing they have there is a community which lives from mendicancy: Jesus’ birds… I saw them in 1988. Some 20 people arriving at the church where Padre Cicero is buried the “Socorro” Church. That woke me aesthetically for they wear blue robes with crosses painted on the back, carrying small flags. So I thought: I want to photograph that! The next year I went to their homes, which are also blue and that made me interested in this theme, the one I follow until today:  The Penitents.


The Penitents


In 2012 I took my first trip to Recife during lent, to look for groups of Penitents. The great majority of them are secret groups. So, after a lot of negotiation with people from Sergipe (including the teacher Maurelina dos Santos) I received permission to photograph them. Unlike people from Juazeiro they are commoners from varied religions who, through familiar traditions, travel through the streets covered in their shrouds during lent and   Holy Week, praying for the souls in purgatory, whom they believe are suffering. The souls are hungry and they feed on prayers. I fell in love with the theme.


Common people leaving work, ladies leaving their favorite soap operas behind to pray and walk long distance singing wailing songs, even in Latin. My research was the first to prove that this ancient ritual, also called “Commendation of the Souls”, “Lamentation of the Souls”, “Food of the Souls”, “Revelry of the Souls” or simply “The Penitents” exists on the five regions around this country.


Amongst them there are also a few groups, always formed by males, which practice self-flagellation. The only exception being a woman in Bahia’s backwoods who decided to practice it herself and the bigger group accepted her. A lot of blood came out of her back.  The next day I visited her and her wounds were completely dry. They typically whip themselves and then bath on the Sao Francisco river, or they put herbs and some cachaça over the wounds and they heal incredibly fast.


The Penitents are my most extensive research subject. I have documented 177 groups. It’s an ancient ritual. The church rarely participates and many times these groups practice where  church is not even present, like a district or a community who has a priest once a year. The leader is called Decurion and they hold a political role over these people and the community.


This kind of penitence comes from Italy, where during the black plague; communities practiced self-flagellation to discover the cure for mankind. As it came to Brazil during the colonization era they assumed a new characteristic: The Penitence did not aim to save mankind from any disease: this was accomplished by the souls.


The rituals are similar all over the country, including their songs. They stop 7 times during the pilgrimage at strategic points for singing and praying. The self-flagellation happens only amongst 4% of the groups and usually during Holy Thursday or Holy Friday. They use the whip which is made (at least in Cariri) from deer leather with pieces of machetes cut at the edge. They beat themselves very hard, losing a lot of blood. It is only over when their clothes are completely red with blood. I have seen this happening and the devotee goes into a state of bliss, while cutting himself/herself.


The Decurion/leader never self-flagellate, for someone must have the power to see that people do not faint and die. When he orders someone to stop, he or she obeys him blindly. The Penitent hierarchy is very powerful and respected.


Religion and art.


Religion is even more important to me than the art. That’s how I see it: Religion first, art second for this is something that keeps me going, enjoying life and believing that the next day will be a better one. I believe in reincarnation, I believe we are all just spending some time here, but the true place is in the afterlife.


To be with these people, photograph them and talk to them, just increases my faith, even if they are of a different religion than my own.


Besides that, getting to know Brazil enriches my life… The deepest backwoods, which I love, living rituals that nobody cares to know about – some of them unfortunately don’t even exist anymore; others I was the only person to keep a record of. And that is the research I enjoy greatly, also the transcendence which is far greater.




I am Kardecist now, but I was a Catholic before. If there’s a chance I have embraced other religions? Who knows maybe…I am open-minded. So much that I profess the Spirits faith, but I also read about other things, Hindi philosophy, Buddhism…


Kardecism helps me answer questions about our existential anguish. What it is being born, living, dying? Yet, what I photograph helps me in another way. It gives me spiritual strength. The Devotees usually help my “spiritual search” with their faith. We are just on different paths. They give me knowledge. When I am at Candomblé, it feels like I am one of them. Of course I have never lied to them, but I feel like being one of them anyway. I sing in Yoruba and Banto the few songs I know. When I am with the Penitents I am part of the group.


I am a Kardecist, but I pray with whomever I am photographing, for God is one in my opinion.


Art is socialization


My evolution from a documentarian to an artist happened when I started being more integrated with groups. Leaving “the outsider” behind and jumping in.


This integration can only come through the codes of art. I can’t see myself as a documentarian anymore. I see myself as an artist who doesn’t seek to portray religiosity but as someone who wants to live it fully in its varied forms.


This way I get into it in multiple forms: physically. I start to get closer to people, I photograph them from 1 meter distance. They don’t feel threatened by me anymore; they already know me, trust me. I also get into it emotionally and spiritually.


The common denominator

It is love, faith and caring for the other. It is trying to do your best. It is the fragility of holding on to something.Our fragility facing life.

Today I see all the religions as one. Clothing may change, rituals may also change but all of them have the same purpose of appeasing human anguish.


At the Arte Pará 2014*, I had an individual exhibit showing pictures of Candomblé,  umbanda and Catholicism in a Jesuit Church from the XVIII century during the time of the procession of “Cirio de Nazaré” . I put the titles and texts about them far away so people could be inside the images – not having to worry about identifying them. Editing and aesthetics helped the majority of time for people not knowing which religion the picture was about. People thought it was Catholic, but in fact it was Umbanda or vice versa. Belem carries a lot of prejudice, and this exhibit was a way to thinking and talking about it. The inter-religious discourse and its risks are part of my work.


Immaterial Culture.


My research is developing: I have videos, audios, texts, original shrouds from the Penitents, as well as photographs. I keep books and flyers. It is an immaterial culture that is fading away slowly. I care about keeping records of everything, for example being interviewed by my closest ones. I have 100 hours of interviews.

Some of the groups I have shot and interviewed are gone now. About the Penitents, the majority cannot read or write and the songs are passed on orally. When the Decurion/leader dies, if no one can remember the song, then it is gone.


There is a group in Sergipe that was the only one to wear a crown of thorns. It wasn’t supposed to hurt but to serve as an aesthetic element. I have photographs proving it. This group is also gone now.


I think religiosity will go on until I die. My research on the Penitents is going to be over one day.


First I thought it would be over in 7 years, after that I thought that there were five more regions to go…I have proved that. I thought it was ok, but the next year I caught myself needing more. It’s been 15 years now and I do not want to stop for every year I find out something new.


Nowadays, besides The Penitents and afro-descendant rituals, I have been researching the Sebastian’s, which are still very present in Brazil. These rituals are based on Don Sebastian from Portugal. There are some who believe he is coming back or that he is already here as a spirit. Many are Millenarians, people who believe in the end of the world. I have interviewed Don Sebastian himself recorded as a video of someone “possessed” by him.


The Penitents have the history that has touched me the most: After photographing the same group of “feeding the souls” in Juazeiro da Bahia, for more than 7 consecutive years, their Decurion/leader Mrs.Jesulene Ribeiro announced to everyone that I was officially a member of that community. I had the same duties and privileges,I just would not be covered by their clothes. And it is like this until today.


I guess now, I have become my own theme.


*Guy Veloso’s interview to the curator Eder Chiodetto, June 2016, Belém PA

*Curated by Paulo Herkenhoff and  Armando Queirós


English version: Isabela de Luca.


Posted by: guyveloso | 17 de March de 2017

Coleção Ipsis de fotografia brasileira


Posted by: guyveloso | 15 de March de 2017


Iemanjá. Belém-PA (Amazônia), Brasil. 2016. (c) Guy Veloso / www

(c) Guy Veloso. Festa de Iemanjá, Belém-PA (Amazônia), 2016  / African-american ritual, “Iemanjá”, Belém-PA (Amazon), Brazil.

Posted by: guyveloso | 10 de March de 2017

Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira

Elza Lima e Guy Veloso: a fotografia paraense na Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira. Organização: Eder Chiodetto.

Lançamento: 7º Festival de Fotografia de Tiradentes, 24 e 25 de março de 2017.

documentary photography brazil

Foto: Guy Veloso. Vale do Amanhecer, Planaltina-DF, 2015.

A Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira, uma iniciativa da Ipsis criada em 2013 para prestigiar a fotografia nacional, inicia o ano lançando dois nomes do notável cenário da fotografia paraense: Elza Lima (vol. 5) e Guy Veloso (vol. 6).

Com um trabalho intenso permeado de inovações, ambos desenvolveram linguagens próprias que abordam temas densos: Elza evoca o onírico e faz uma narrativa de poética singular sobre a vida de ribeirinhos e caboclos amazônidas e Guy Veloso nos transporta para um mergulho inquietante e profundo na fé dos devotos de diversas religiões praticadas no Brasil.

A fotografia entrou na vida de Elza antes mesmo que tivesse consciência dela quando, ainda criança, descobriu fascinada dentro de um armário uma foto que o bisavô havia trazido da Europa. Ao retratar o interior da região amazônica ela relembra o rico imaginário vivenciado na infância ampliado com a leitura de clássicos, de obras sobre a Amazônia e de mitologia: “Acredito que um bom fotógrafo está sempre respaldado no imaginário. Meu trabalho é muito voltado para o sonho.”

Uma cultura imaterial existente, riquíssima, que emociona e transcende, assim Guy Veloso define as manifestações religiosas que fotografa há 30 anos, com especial destaque aos penitentes que cometem auto-flagelo, um dos destaques da 29a Bienal de Arte de São Paulo. Trabalho dedicado, vivenciado, fruto de uma pesquisa aplicada, que abriu um diálogo tão intenso entre autor e objeto fotografado que findou numa rara e extraordinária situação: virei meu próprio tema, diz o fotógrafo.

Cuidadosamente selecionados por Eder Chiodetto, renomado curador da área de Fotografia e organizador da Coleção Ipsis, Elza e Guy são representantes de peso da fotografia contemporânea documental com trabalhos expressivos que abordam de forma distinta, singular, aspectos de nossa cultura.

Eder define o trabalho de Elza como uma “poética fluída e especial, que cria a possibilidade de fabular por meio das composições labirínticas que intercalam diversos planos, fato que confere grande originalidade à obra da artista”.

Sobre a produção de Guy, o curador destaca a intensidade da imersão alcançada pelo fotógrafo com o tema de seu trabalho que ultrapassa a própria fotografia e remete ao transe, criando uma transcendência entre o autor e sua área de pesquisa. A idéia do “transe”, aliás,  foi a chave que o curador propôs ao autor para selecionar obras de seu imenso acervo.

Através das escolhas de Eder Chiodetto, a Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira contribui para o enriquecimento da área lançando o primeiro livro dos autores que ainda não possuíam publicações dedicadas exclusivamente às suas obras.

Serviço: Lançamento da Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira, volumes 5 e 6
no 7º Festival de Fotografia de Tiradentes, informações no Facebook
(  )


Exposição e autógrafos: Espaço Ipsis – Sobrado Quatro Cantos / R. Direita, 5

Bate-papo com Elza Lima e Eder Chiodetto, mediação: Tiago Santana
24/ 03, sexta-feira – 20hrs
Centro Cultural Yves Alves / R. Direita,168 -capacidade de público: 120 pessoas

Bate-papo com Guy Veloso, mediação: Eder Chiodetto
25/ 03, sábado – 11hrs
Teatro Casa de Bonecos / R. Direita, 288

Realização: Ipsis Gráfica & Editora
Organização, pesquisa e textos: Eder Chiodetto
Quando: 24 e 25 de março
Onde: 7º Festival de Fotografia de Tiradentes, MG
Sobrado 4 Cantos, Rua Direita, nº 5

Preço: valor de capa R$ 50,00 no lançamento Desconto de 20% – R$ 40,00. Pacote com os 6 volumes – R$ 220,00.

Sugestão para entrevistas:
Eder Chiodetto

/ (11) 4305-8022 /

Atendimento à Imprensa
Magali Martucci | Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira

 (11)  95982-9018 / whatsapp (11)  98130-1095 /

Coleção Ipsis de Fotografia Brasileira

Criada em 2013 com o propósito de homenagear a produção nacional em livros de imbatível qualidade e preço acessível, a coleção apresenta a produção de fotógrafos referenciais que pesquisam a brasilidade em suas diversas manifestações. Araquém Alcântara, Nelson Kon e Cristiano Mascaro e Thomaz Farkas compõem os 4 primeiros volumes.

Organização, pesquisa, organização e textos: Eder Chiodetto (

EDER CHIODETTO [São Paulo, SP, 1965] é mestre em Comunicação pela Escola de Comunicação e Artes da Universidade de São Paulo. Atuou como repórter-fotográfico (1991-1995), editor (1995-2004) e crítico de fotografia (1996-2010) no jornal Folha de S. Paulo. Hoje, reúne as funções de jornalista, professor, curador e pesquisador de fotografia.
Como curador independente realizou, desde 2004, mais de 80 exposições no Brasil e no exterior. Chiodetto é também o curador do Clube de Colecionadores de Fotografia do MAM-SP desde 2006, diretor do Ateliê Fotô e publisher da Fotô Editorial.
É autor de diversos livros, entre eles, “O Lugar do Escritor” (Cosac Naify, 2002) “Geração 00: A Nova Fotografia Brasileira” (Edições SESC); “Curadoria em Fotografia: da Pesquisa à Exposição” (E-book, Prêmio Marc Ferrez/Funarte) e “German Lorca” (Cosac Naify), entre outros.



A Ipsis Gráfica e Editora S/A, empresa com 70 anos de atuação, é reconhecida por sua excelência gráfica, patamar alcançado através de constantes investimentos em pesquisas, técnicas, equipamentos e materiais especiais e na troca de experiências com editores, produtores culturais, designers, fotógrafos e artistas plásticos visando à obtenção plena de um alto padrão de qualidade.

Considerada a melhor gráfica editorial do país, tornou-se um referencial na produção de livros de arte e de literatura, luxuosas revistas segmentadas, bem como catálogos e relatórios anuais empresariais. A Ipsis também se distingue por ser a gráfica nacional mais premiada, condecorada mais de uma vez com o “Fernando Pini”, Prêmio Brasileiro de Excelência Gráfica, com o latino “Theobaldo de Nigris” e o internacional “The Premier Print Awards – Printing Industries of América”, conhecido como “Benny”.

Instalada desde 2011 em um moderno parque industrial de 12.000 m2 no município de Santo André, São Paulo, a empresa é autossuficiente na maioria das etapas de produção, conta com mais de 250 colaboradores diretos e indiretos e empenha-se constantemente para sedimentar  processos já certificados como o FSC® e ISO 9001: 2008.

Posted by: guyveloso | 9 de March de 2017

Portela 2017. A grande campeã.


Foto Guy Veloso. Portela, desfile de 2017 / Rio’s carnival parade – Portela, 2017.

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