The poet Terri Witek and the visual artist Cyriaco Lopes have been collaborating since 2005. While Witek often writes poetry about art, Lopes’ art work often investigates language. A signature of their collaborations is that their media, art and poetry, interweave while each retains its identity. By reinventing, interrupting and restaging each other’s words and images, they create a hybrid third possibility. Their collaborations so far have extended to video, performance, photography, drawing, and artists’ books.
Their projects have been featured at Art in Odd Places (Big Bronze Statues was chosen as one of the highlights of the 2009 season by Time Out New York), in a solo show at Le Petit Versailles, New York, at the British Film Festival (finalist in the avant-garde category), and in Contemporary Flanerie: Reconfiguring Cities (Oakland University, Michigan) among other venues. The first retrospective of their work to date, but here all dreams equal distance, was shown at Grinnell College’s Faulconer Gallery in April, 2010 and featured a collaborative multi-media event, the day you left, currently on tour. In November 2010 their a site-specific project, A Shelter on King’s Road placed the trace of Martin Luther King’s firebombed cottage in the Markland House, a National Register treasure acquired by Flagler College in 1966. The piece appeared as part of the Other Words Conference and the City Art Walk. A new project, an ongoing game called Uma Coisa N’Outra, is designed in several versions to play both nationally and internationally.
Terri Witek is the author of Exit Island, which includes a suite of images by Cyriaco Lopes and an art book edition (Orchises Press, 2012), The Shipwreck Dress (Orchises Press, 2008, Florida Book Award Medalist), Carnal World (Story Line Press, 2006), Fools and Crows (Orchises Press, 2003), Courting Couples (Winner of the 2000 Center for Book Arts Contest) and Robert Lowell and LIFE STUDIES: Revising the Self (University of Missouri Press, 1993). She has published poems in Slate, The Hudson Review, The New Republic, The American Poetry Review, and other journals, and is the recipient of fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Hawthornden International Writers’ Retreat, and the state of Florida. A native of northern Ohio, she holds the Sullivan Chair in Creative Writing.
In the past few years Cyriaco Lopes’ work has been seen in the U.S. at the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore, at El Museo del Barrio, ApexArt and the America’s Society in New York, at the Contemporary Art Museum in Saint Louis, among other venues. In the same period his work was also seen in France, Germany, Poland, Chile and Portugal. In his native Brazil the artist has shown at the National Museum of Fine Arts, the Museum of Modern Art of Salvador, and the Museum of Art of São Paulo, among other institutions. His work was curated into exhibitions by artists such as Janine Antoni, Luciano Fabro and Lygia Pape, as well as by curators such as Paulo Herkenhoff. Lopes was the winner of the Worldstudio AIGA and RTKL awards, the Contemporary Art Museum Project award (Saint Louis) and the Prêmio Phillips of a trip to Paris.