Information, News

One Month Research Residency in São Paulo

Naoko Mabon will conduct a one-month research residency at Überbau_house in São Paulo from 31st August to 28th September 2017.

Follow Mabon’s daily photo report here:

Hosted by Überbau_house, a contemporary art research initiative in São Paulo, the main aim for this residency is to investigate a clear connection between São Paulo, Scotland/UK and Japan, which will be developed as a robust theoretical base for a future touring project between these three locations. It involves fieldwork in communities and archives; meeting new contacts e.g. studio visits; and discussion with other art professionals. Findings will be shared through: two public presentations at Überbau_house; daily Tumblr photo-report; and a public presentation upon Mabon’s return in Aberdeen.

São Paulo is located in the 8th largest economy globally and hosts the world’s second most historical art biennial after the Venice Biennial. Between Brazil and Scotland/UK, a unique cultural relationship has been developed, notably through the British Council’s Transform programme supported by Creative Scotland in association with the two Olympic Games – London 2012 and Rio 2016. Scotland’s Japan connection, meanwhile, was reinforced by a 2017 visit by Fiona Hyslop, the External Affairs Secretary of Scottish Government. Linking these, São Paulo is home to Liberdade, the world’s largest Japanese community outside Japan. Mabon’s status as a Japanese immigrant based in Scotland – plus Scotland’s rich history of emigration to other lands – makes her think more about the volatility and fluidity of our identity beyond language, border or culture. It is this thinking that I would like to develop further into a concrete project concept through this residency, plus beginning to select artists/artworks, seeking venues/partners, and so on.

The research method will involve: social-scientific fieldwork (observation, conversation, note-taking) e.g. Liberdade community; exploring archive materials (e.g. books, exhibition catalogues, maps, photos/videos, academic papers) e.g. Instituto Tomie Ohtake, Videobrasil, Museum of Contemporary Art of the University of São Paulo, among others; developing new contacts through Überbau_house programme and studio visits. Findings will be shared through: two public presentations at Überbau_house; daily photo report via a Tumblr page at; and a public presentation in Aberdeen upon Mabon’s return.

This is therefore the starting point of a future touring project between São Paulo, Scotland and Japan. Through this, Mabon will position herself as a bridge between the three locations. This opportunity not only gives Mabon’s international and local curatorial work a crucial next step, but also it develops Scotland’s reputation for cultural dialogue and exchange with Brazil and Japan by contributing to a common goal of (a) exploring the notion of ‘other’ within a host culture; and (b) profiling Scotland’s support for multiculturalism within contemporary arts, making connections with other cultures, in this case Scotland and Brazil and Japan.


Naoko Mabon realizará uma residência de pesquisa de um mês em São Paulo de 31 de agosto a 28 de setembro de 2017.

Organizado por Überbau_house, uma iniciativa de pesquisa de arte contemporânea em São Paulo, o principal objetivo dessa residência é investigar uma conexão clara entre São Paulo, Escócia/Reino Unido e Japão, que será desenvolvida como uma base teórica robusta para um futuro projeto entre Estes três locais. Envolve trabalho de campo em comunidades e arquivos; Encontrando novos contatos, e. Visitas de estúdio; E discussão com outros profissionais da arte. Os resultados serão compartilhados através de: duas apresentações públicas em Überbau_house; Diário Tumblr foto-relatório; E uma apresentação pública após o retorno de Mabon em Aberdeen.

Acompanhe o relatório diário da Naoko aqui:



サンパウロの現代美術研究イニシアティブである Überbau_house が主催する本レジデンスの主な目的は、サンパウロ、スコットランド/英国、そして日本の間に明確な “つながり” を発見することにあります。そして将来的にこの “つながり” をある思想的な主題として発展させ、それを基盤に三つの場所を巡回するプロジェクトとして昇華させたい狙いがあります。具体的な調査方法は、日本外における世界最大級の日本人街「リベルダーデ」をはじめサンパウロ特有の地域におけるフィールドワーク、美術館等の機関が保有するアーカイブ資料を使っての調査、アーティストのスタジオ訪問、あらゆるアート・プロフェッショナルとのディスカッションなどです。レジデンスを通じて得たものは次のものを通して共有されます:Überbau_house での計2回の公開プレゼンテーション、毎日更新予定のTumblrでの写真レポート、そしてスコットランド・アバディーンへ戻ってからの公開プレゼンテーション、です。