5. Moara Brasil and Janaú

Kunhã Strength 2019
single-channel digital video, colour, sound
14:05 mins
Courtesy the artists

Moara Brasil
Born 1983 in Pará, Brazil
Lives and works in Sao Paulo and Pará

Born 1983 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Lives and works in Ubatuba, Brazil and itinerant

“The history of Brazil is marked by innumerable violence against the native people of its territory, in recent years there has been a greater articulation between the native population, including the presence of representatives in the National Congress. For the indigenous, the territory is fundamental to the traditional way of life, it is there that the relations between the community and spirituality are structured in deep connection with nature. That’s why to protect native people is to protect the environment.

The indigenous women’s strength calls for ‘Territory: our body, our spirit’ because the earth is sacred as well as each of the beings that inhabit it, in body and spirit. Their power is an answer to the colonial violence that historically has tried to destroy their traditions and the nature, it’s a fight against oppression to the women’s bodies, to the mother nature body.”

‘Kunhã’ means woman in the indigenous language Tupi-Guarani, still alive for many Indigenous people of Brazil. In August 2019, the First Indigenous Women’s March took place in Brasília, the capital of the country. With the slogan ‘Territory: our body, our spirit’, woman from all over the country came together to demand the demarcation of their traditional lands as well as to ask for more public policies to protect their communities. For the very first time almost two thousand women gathered in the political center of the country in a historic act.

Recently, with the pandemic situation of the world, activists from all over the country are making a strong effort to protect the communities from COVID-19. As of July 2019, more than one hundred indigenous people have died, some of whom were important spiritual and political leaders of their people.