Ela Bittencourt

Ela Bittencourt is a critic and cultural journalist, currently based in São Paulo, Brazil.

At Pinacoteca de Estado, São Paulo, the artist toes the fragile line between language, bodies and the environment

BY Ela Bittencourt | 17 MAR 23

Ela Bittencourt investigates the ways in which film directors in the 1960s and '70s used surrealism as a way of interrogating unstable political moments and reimagining the future 

BY Ela Bittencourt | 05 JUL 22

From Regina Silveria’s survey at MAC-USP to Paulo Nazareth’s solo exhibition at Pivô, these are the best shows to catch during São Paulo’s art week

BY Ela Bittencourt | 08 APR 22

This year's iteration of the international exhibition is impressively global in its curatorial reach but the impact of some works diminishes in cross-cultural adaptation

BY Ela Bittencourt | 21 DEC 21

The artist recounts constructing transitory interventions in the face of inflexible bureaucracy

BY Renata Lucas AND Ela Bittencourt | 10 DEC 21

The photographer's exhibition at the Guggenheim, New York, captures the elemental power of Blackness by intermingling portraits with celestial installations

BY Ela Bittencourt | 14 JUL 21

With preventable fires and flooding destroying many of Brazil's cultural institutions, what's at stake for the country's most significant film and television archive?

BY Ela Bittencourt | 10 MAY 21

At Galeria Luisa Strina, São Paulo, the artist presents a series of paintings, drawings and collages that capture the physical and mental endurance of confinement

BY Ela Bittencourt | 07 APR 21

This year’s edition abounded in intricate, ephemeral works across an expansive programme

BY Ela Bittencourt | 26 FEB 19

Workshopping a new book project at Porto/Post/Doc, the theorist and filmmaker who diagnosed how Hollywood reinforced patriarchal codes

BY Ela Bittencourt | 11 DEC 18

At the Courtisane Film Festival, Ghent, Mónica Savirón and María Palacios Cruz's programme of works by neglected women artists

BY Ela Bittencourt | 23 APR 18

From a close study of the American voting booth to a plague of hydrangeas: the New York Film Festival’s Projections slate, 6-9 October

BY Ela Bittencourt | 04 OCT 17

From a tribute to Straub/Huillet to Valerie Massadian’s portrait of teenage motherhood, the turn to real situations and people for fiction films

BY Ela Bittencourt | 16 AUG 17

With a strong surrealist strain, and including a welcome number of female artists, highlights from the 48th edition of the photography festival

BY Ela Bittencourt | 20 JUL 17

Three highlights from the New York festival promoting emerging filmmakers

BY Ela Bittencourt | 15 MAR 17

Eduardo Williams’s new documentary focuses on the cruelty of the job market for young people in three different countries

BY Ela Bittencourt | 08 OCT 16

Errol Morris’s new documentary is a touching portrait of photographer Elsa Dorfman

BY Ela Bittencourt | 05 OCT 16

This week’s Culture Digest rounds up some highlights from the 54th New York Film Festival

BY Ela Bittencourt | 04 OCT 16

Jonas Mekas to Maud Alpi to Lina Rodriguez to Júlio Bressane – highlights from the Swiss film festival

BY Ela Bittencourt | 11 AUG 16

2014 was a great year for cinephiles. The one regret I have is not having seen Jean-Luc Godard’s Goodbye to Language (2014) in 3D, a film that is said to revolutionize cinema to the point where watching it in 2D, as I did, is pointless. Luckily, as far as 2D pleasures, there were plenty, starting with White Shadow (2013, 2014 release), a stunning debut by Noaz Deshe, so far scantily present on the festival circuit. Berlin and Los Angeles-based Deshe sets his film in Tanzania, inspired by real-life stories of Africa’s albinos, who are mercilessly hunted because their organs are believed to have healing powers. In the film, a young albino, Alias, escapes after his father’s ambush. Alias sells DVDs in a cutthroat city and finds companionship in a rural albino shelter, but is betrayed by his uncle. Deshe’s hallucinatory storytelling and edgy camerawork have a primal power, with a witchdoctor that channels Flannery O’Connor. Deshe stresses the sensory experience, and Alias’ plight is so agonizing, this is the one film whose vision and humanity continue to haunt me.

BY Ela Bittencourt | 02 JAN 15