Petrified Urgency: Norway's neighborhoods for “returnees”

Exhibition by José Sérgio, Diego Inglez de Souza, Joana Fonseca Maia, and Sérgio Catumba, curated by Joaquim Moreno



March 28, 2024




For almost half a century, we have lived in the spaces of freedom created by African independence and the Carnation Revolution. And we have almost forgotten that the end of this unjust world, and the emergence of the spaces of freedom we celebrate, suddenly displaced hundreds of thousands of people. Neither refugees nor migrants, neither temporarily displaced persons dreaming of a future return, nor transnational labor in search of a better life. The name that stuck to these people's skin: returnees, described the ghost of a return, a comeback, a homecoming to a hypothetical home of departure. An urgency with no end in sight, a crisis too big to be solved and in need of social and territorial reorganization. And an ongoing Revolutionary Process that framed this collision between the urgency caused by a sudden population increase of almost 10% and the structural need for housing in a deeply unequal and unjust country. This collective work seeks to document the life lived as a result of this urgency, through the intersecting stories of three neighborhoods of prefabricated wooden houses sent, through Norwegian international aid, to the districts of Vila Real, Bragança and Viseu. It seeks to show the life of urgency, its petrification, the transformed permanence of what was apparently ephemeral, the way to make the temporary last, to breathe into the transient the indefinite permanence of the houses.

Petrified Urgency: Norway's neighborhoods for “returnees”
Petrified Urgency: Norway's neighborhoods for “returnees”
Petrified Urgency: Norway's neighborhoods for “returnees”

Pátio do Bolhão 125

4000-110 Porto, Portugal


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