segunda-feira, 25 de junho de 2012

Wasteland (Lixo Extraordinário), a captivating story


Wasteland "Lixo Extraordinário" is a short film by contemporary modern artist Vik Muniz, a Brazilian based on Brooklyn and directed by Lucy Walker. It was nominated for the Academy Awards for best documentary feature in 2011, Audience award in Sundance Film festival in 2010, Best documentary in Durban International Film festival (2010) and many.

Muniz uncovers a stoical yet magical story of “Catadores" (self-designated pickers/scavengers of recyclable materials) from the world’s largest garbage dump in Jardim Gramacho located in the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. It is situated behind the world famous iconic statue "Christ the Redeemer". Every day 7,000 tons of garbage lands at Jardim Gramacho which accounts 70% of the trash emitted by Rio de Janeiro. It is recognized for receiving the highest quantity of trash in any landfill in the world. This landfill is surrounded by a community (“Favela") Jardim Gramacho, which is home to over 13,000 people whose economy is completely depended on the recyclable material. Around 3,000 pickers work in landfill with over 1,700 has work contract. The landfill is scheduled to shut down in 2012.

Muniz was moved by the stunning, inspiring characters and their living conditions. He captured excellent shots which received wide acknowledgement from the world media. With the collaborators they organized large scale mosaic portraits that are sold out in London and some are exhibited in the Museum of modern art in São Paulo. It is truly a ground breaking venture by Muniz and crew taking into account the pickers and their lives.  www.wastelandmovie.com

A video trailer

quinta-feira, 21 de junho de 2012

“Amazon” - a riveting and stark escapade in Amazon with Bruce Parry

"The Amazon is a metaphor for the world” admits Bruce Parry, UK ex-mariner, ardent adventurist and presenter. His riveting journey exposed naked truths of the Homo sapiens, floras and faunas throbbing in Amazon. Although he had prior experiences with forests and tribes this documentary series gave him grotesque and yet pulsating revelations. His earlier series “Tribe" had received immense and immediate global attention.   

"Amazon with Bruce Parry", is an exhilarating 6 episode series produced and broadcasted by BBC. Bruce escapade spanned about 7 months and over 6.800km through the Amazon. The story begins with the disputed origin of Amazon, at around 5000 meters high at the Andes Mountain. The droplets melting out of the ice from Andes makes it the biggest ecological glamor. Bruce spends time with the Alpaca farmers who live near the origin, Nevado Mismi.

Every year tons of soil swept away from Sahara desert by wind and are deposited in the Amazon. This process has empowered Amazon for millions of years, a global commute. Amazon is one of the largest respiratory organ of the earth. It is a jungle of mystery with thousands of rich diversified species of floras and faunas. Every year a huge percentage of forest disappears silently and the pace of environmental disaster is unquestioned.

For the indigenous, Amazon rainforest is the lifeline of their existence and for decades they are being haunted by poachers, ranchers and multi-nationals. Bruce says It's about the hopes and wishes of indigenous communities trying to grapple with a mad modern world where they face losing their language, identity and in some cases, their lives. It's about people who are so important to the world, who could teach us all so much in these troubled times. That's what Tribe is to me.”  

The series clearly portrays the tribe’s resistance to permit Bruce and his crew into their community. However, he stays with Achuar people (who had contact with the outside world for less than 40 years) where he tried the sacred drink Ayahuasca. His lessons from Ayahuasca was moving, his ego has prevented him from seeing the visions. Despite of true efforts, the tribes treats Bruce with suspicious eyes. Bruce contemplates, the tribes are getting reunited, alerted to protect and preserve their traditions from intruders.

The petroleum companies are bustling in the Amazon basin and the ecology is disrupted. The fishes started to die, soils/land and fresh water system are polluted from oil spills and other chain of ecological impacts. On the other hand, some regions of the Amazon are extremely dangerous and are occupied by deadly coca planters and poachers. Bruce and crew had true grit to encounter closely the production of cocaine in an undisclosed location hidden under the woods. They luckily escaped from the raids of the patrolling helicopter. The nature of this business is prickly and threatening. These planters take huge risk in planting coca plants for a meager price of $100 which is sold out for millions in the international market. These planters are poor, however they are part of the chain. Where us the middlemen or dealers mints a huge chunk of money. 

After a treacherous and exciting trekking through the Peruvian Amazon he enters the Brazilian Amazon, he was welcomed by the Carnival festival at Benjamin Constant. Interestingly Amazon River takes on many names until reaching Brazil. He had a very memorable and stark experience with the tribes in the Brazilian Amazon as well. He visits Grota Rica and uncovers a widespread excavation by humans for gold. Bruce winds up his journey in the Para state in Brazil where huge deforestation is undergoing for cattle farming. Here the battle between the ranchers and indigenous is red hot.

I strongly recommend watching this documentary which will offer a deep understanding of Amazon rainforest and its living beings associated with it. The sheer scale of exploitation in Amazon has been a flaming pot for decades and a little has been done. This documentary peeps into the realities of the indigenous and the scale of wide sprung deforestation, perhaps the largest exploitation by human beings on the planet. It is an awakening call to the whole humanity. 

Follow the links of articles, videos and photos. 
Fragile earth, an article on extensive gold mining

An excellent coverage’s about the oil spills in Amazon

Video footage from Youtube


segunda-feira, 18 de junho de 2012

An Italian Home delight in Brazil, MACEF International Home Show

MACEF International Home Show is one of the largest home exhibitions focused on Italian household brands. The exhibition commence on 19th until 21st June, 2012 at Transamerica Expo Center

The Brazilian admiration on Italian products is well noted. The Italian products have received high appreciation for its fabulous and delicate designs. It is an engineering delight with portrayal of connoisseur Italian craftsmanship. The materials used are of high quality with less intricate joints, durable and magnificent finishing

MACEF International Home Show, Brazil is organized by Fiera Milano in partnership with FM Publicações and Cipa Eventos Ltda

This exhibition will offer visibility, overview of entire supply chain, receive feedbacks, identify competitive edges, meet producers, craftsmen and brand positioning. It will be an excellent opportunity to buy and gather ideas to enhance your home

Date: 19 -21 June 2012
Timing:  10:00am - 8:30pm
Venue: Transamerica Expo Center, São Paulo

quinta-feira, 14 de junho de 2012

The “People of the Axe", Yawanawa

The Yawanawa are the indigenous tribe from the Amazon (western) region, spread across Brazil, Peru and Bolivia. They are currently concentrated in Tarauaca region in Acre (Brazil) surrounded by dangerous ranchers/farmers who constantly pour threats to their survival. In Yaminawá language, Yawanawa signifies as "People of the Axe".

The Yawanawa rituals, dances, songs, clothing, art works and body painting are of unique significance and popularity. The Shamans, the masters of holy medicines are known for assembling medicinal and sacramental plants to cure various diseases like insomnia, snake bite, fertility, skin diseases, fever, body pain, diarrhea and a list of diseases.

The tribe had a longing history of struggle for restoring cultural traditions and preserving the Amazonian rain forest from illicit occupation. The Yawanawa had vulnerable and yet nasty "tug of war" against the rubber extractors/loggers and farmers (cattle, soybeans..etc.). During this period Yawanawa were made slaves, and underwent intense suffering, but they managed to get rid of the cradle and had their land demarcated in the Acre state in Brazil.

Apart, for over 3 decades the tribe had invasions by the religious missionaries who destroyed their cultural and religious traditions. The missionaries shunned (banned) the Shamans and were sent exile into the deep forest. Eventually, the Yawanawa was able to tacitly dismiss the missionaries and brought back the exiled shamans  

The Project Yawanawa is an initiative to preserve and demonstrate the cultural essence of Yawanawa tribe and also the Amazon related issues faced by other tribes, flora and fauna. The project consists of a group of people from various backgrounds with similar interest and their objective is to generate a revenue source aiming at the empowerment of Yawanawa by not damaging their rituals, heritage and lifestyle. The project is structured into various phases with clear objectives and the project requires support from individuals or corporates through donations or other sources. Various programs have been installed like exhibitions, presentations and courses which focus on the ethnic practices, medicines, artwork and traditions.

Every year a large area of rainforest disappears and the proportion of the destruction is unimaginable. The colossal destruction is triggered in a motive to boast the economic growth and the Brazilian government has done little. The Amazon rainforest is an integral part of the ecology and living beings associated with them. It is our responsibility to protect this precious rain forest and provide sustainable solutions.    

quarta-feira, 13 de junho de 2012

1st alternative, holistic and complementary therapy exhibition in Brazil

In June Brazil will witness a major event for first time, exclusively dedicated to the alternative, holistic and complementary therapies in Brazil. The event is expected to attract over 10 million people from all over the Brazil and outside Brazil as well. This will provide an opportunity to the visitors to take a glance and also experience some of these techniques.. The event will happen on 23, 24th June 2012 at Centro de Exposições Imgrantes, Rodovia dos Imigrantes, KM 1.5, São Paulo between 10:00 am to 10:00pm
The alternative medicine and its associated therapies had a snail start in Brazil and for many decades it had been in the backyards of the mainstream health industry. Meanwhile with increased health consciousness and the current economic boom this segment is rapidly keeping in pace. In the run, many foreign therapies has been imbibed into the mainstream therapies like acupunture, reiki ..etc .  In respect to opportunities, this segment generates jobs, sales, international transactions, marketing and so on. 

The main objective of this event is to demonstrate various natural therapies like acupuncture, Ayurveda, aroma therapy, homeopathy, reiki, naturopathy, massages, yoga and huge lists. This will drive a  close encounter between the visitors and practitioners. Many programs like speech, demonstration of work, presentations  will take place in various auditorium simultaneously (http://www.exposaudealternativa.com.br/programa.htm ). In addition, the practitioners can capture an overview on the demands, receive feedbacks, experiment and promote their work. 

Date : 23, 24th June, 2012
Time: 10:00 am - 10:00pm
Entry: R$15,00 (For students and elders (above 60) pay half ticket )
Parking: is available at the exposition
Address: Centro de Exposições Imgrantes, Rodovia dos Imigrantes, KM 1.5, São Paulo
Note: There will be free transport from metro Jabaquara to the exposition