(Claudia Ayoub wears a dress by ReciclaGEM, a necklace by Ladyfied Vintage, and shoes by Jeffrey Campbell's vegan collection). Photo by Austin Phelps.
Born in São Paulo and raised between São Paulo and Rio, Claudia Ayoub is an interdisciplinary performance artist who explores themes of ancestry, Afro-diasporic spirituality, ritual, carnival, and the complexities embedded within performative and non verbal story telling. She completed her Masters of Performance Studies degree in NYU Tisch after studying visual arts at the Fine Arts Center of São Paulo. She utilizes the diverse media of performance art, painting, installation, sculpture, video art, and education to explore themes ranging from São Paulo and Rio’s Carnival as a performance of the wondrous - its relations to African Brazilian religions to recovery-redemption-rescue of the self, and the appropriation and misappropriation of space.
I modeled out of admiration of my friend's work, and the will for enriching the transmission of the Brazilian culture across places.
One of her most recent performances, "The Secret Face of Living Things: How to Make People with Objects II," was a six-hour interactive performance piece, which explored the potentially conflicting tension that can exist between the many significances objects can bear. In the words of the artist,
Is an object, in and of itself, sacred or profane?Where lies the space of possibility? – where all objects can relate, no matter what their varying significance to different peoples.And what does it mean to conceive an antagonistic potentiality: such as a deity that is simultaneously sacred and mundane? This performance is a culturally specific reflection on the social necessity of this dichotomy, and at the same time is an experiment on how it can be engaging to different individuals.
(View the clip of the performance, and the research that informed it here)
Claudia's Relationship to Brazil
Passion and love for the beauty and richness, and hope for better changes. Changes that can improve the quality of people's lives, but don't corrupt our vitality of living. Although I feel like a hybrid person and a citizen of the world, the rhythm of my heart and soul is Brazilian.
The richness of its colors and flavors, the warmth of the people, the dancing, the possibility of navigating through so many worlds within worlds.
Thank you, Claudia, for your beauty, artistry, talent and grace! You make our world better,