Culturas y pueblos ancestrales

Metamorphosis of Ecstasy

Reflection on Hybrids, Spirits of Brazil

Por Mauricio Novelo Jarque

22 may 2018


Translated by Sara Sandoval


captivated by
I see images
they are candles
of a ship amidst a tempest

Lucila Nogueira



Anthropology can also be anthropophagic, because it is a form of a transforming appropriation of the other. Something similar thought Michel de Montaigne, when in Brazil he imagined that the barbarian is the one who seeks barbarism.

Behind an ideology, whatever it may be, there is always an idea of summary judgment about reality. As if our reason could morally dominate all human and non-human acts. Cinema should not be limited to a political position; it is enough that it is beautiful –that is already a sufficiently powerful political position nowadays. In poetry, ambiguity, which is a profound form of approximation, opens the threshold to another state of being, perhaps more primitive, primal and fundamental. Through this cinema –ethereal and terrestrial, of clouds and mud– the amazement before the mystery becomes what really feeds the resistance against the accelerated movement of our times.

In the cinema ceremony, we went to the reminiscences of the cave as a tribe. We helped the supplier of the images through fire. We peeked into the well that reflects the flow of our consciousness. Deep down, we still remain that woman or that man whose pupils dilate before the flames with the desire to suppress the distance between the sacred and the profane.

Some people think that the objective of poetry is to return the meaning to the tribe, but what is the tribe? And if that were the case, who kept the flame of the ritual that holds us together with that primitive being, which refuses to give all its essence to the virtuality of machines?



A tribe in front of a fire that seeks a trance; the propitious images for the trance emerge from that fire; a cinema like a dance among the hidden, dark and luminous furies that form the spiritual cosmos of Brazil. This is what the viewer finds in the documentary Hybrids, Spirits of Brazil.

The human side is also constituted by those furies that we contain jealously in our interior… Contemporaneity fears magic specially if it is black. A river flows with all its power through the torrent of a life that vibrates on the verge of ecstasy. This is the cinematic look of the directors of the film –Vincent Moon and Priscilla Telmon– that turns us into that river. When the soul leaves the body, women and men shudder in every part of their bodies until we make our way to the soul’s odyssey, from its departure to its return to this world.

There, in the place once called Tristes Tropiques, the universe that Claude Lévi-Strauss wanted to show the world and that he tried to structure, we now see it in a complex universe, magnetized by its rhythms: flows that in time unite, commune, exorcise, twist, burn, consume and reborn. Just as the life that always returns in spiral. This is a song to that perpetual rebirth. Pulse and vibration of the shadows… traces of places where the howl is born.

I gather your mutilated parts / Yemoja in her shrine / women overboard

Lucila Nogueira

A look that lubricates the sacredness of the world makes us give birth from the council of birds to the frenzy and convulsion of orgasm.

From the songs to Yemoja to the prayers to Christ; from Ethiopia to Greece; from Rio de Janeiro to Bahia; from Senegal to Persia; from Copacabana to Minas Gerais. In Hybrids, Spirits of Brazil a journey through the delirium that induces the spectator to trance is open. Everything suggests an open sky that inverts the eyes. A cinema with dripping faces that slip away in tears, sweat, mud and blood. A cinema that caresses with vitality bodies without utopias. A cinema that opens and does not mutilate. A cinema that comes from the bowels and is voracious. A look that floats and absorbs. An anthropophagic, wild and cannibal cinema.

Souls can’t be touched / like flesh / and their drawing / transmigrate through sound / the world

Lucila Nogueira


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