I may have lost forever my umbrella



In the spring of 2011, during the Photomonth in Krakow, the artist collective Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin invited Johan Grimonprez to be part of the exhibition ALIAS. For this exhibition, they asked artists to inhabit alternate personas and create artworks as this non-existent third-person. None of the exhibiting artists existed, since the fictional characters had taken over the creative process.

Grimonprez was assigned to inhabit Fernando Pessoa, who wrote much of his oeuvre under multiple, alternative identities. Not so much pseudonyms or aliases but what Pessoa termed ‘heteronyms’ - invented personalities with detailed biographies and interweaving histories. Pessoa’s ‘The Book of Disquiet’ became Grimonprez' point of departure.

Shot on iPhone, Grimonprez captures details from YouTube's endless flow of images - a world where ‘heteronyms’ abound. Testimonies of the earthquake and the tsunami that had hit Japan in March that year, dominated the net. This resonated quietly with Pessoa’s world of disquiet.