Museu do Côa / Côa Museum

Este fim de semana fui a Foz Côa ver as gravuras. Aproveitei e tirei estas fotografias no Museu.

Se nunca viu as gravuras… é ir. Estão lá há 25.000 anos à sua espera.

Siga em


This week end I went to Foz Côa (near the Douro River) to see the 25000 years art work (

Along the way I made some photos in the Museum.


Follow in


Fado alive and kicking in Mouraria


- Henriqueta Baptista -

Fado, which origins go back until the 1820’s, but is probably much older, had a difficult time after the Carnation revolution in 1974. It is the genre had become recuperated by the dictatorship – it was one of the 3 F´s Salazar had used to keep his people down: Fatima (which represents catholic faith referring to the famous pilgrimage village Fatima), Football (still omnipresent in Portugal) and Fado. Salazar cleaned up the genre – all songs true to its sailor and prostitution roots about cocaine, booze and sex – went out; songs about nostalgic and resigned longing for (past) happiness and about poor but satisfied people were encouraged, as well as songs hailing the pure and simple soul of the Portuguese. Amália Rodrigues, the most famous Fado singer ever who has put Fado on the world map, also got contaminated by the downfall of Fado after the revolution. She was snubbed because she had never spoken out against the regime. After a few years of tar and feathers though she was forgiven by most Portuguese, and today it´s difficult to find someone who´s not proud of her achievements.



For some years, Fado is really back. Stars like Mariza conquer the world – even though many fadistas back home aren´t great admirers of her fusion style – and fado houses for tourists are packed. Yet another kind of Fado keeps on blossoming far from the spotlights, one that actually might be much closer to the origins of the genre. It´s called ‘Fado Vadio’, or popular fado, and even though performed with as much saudade, it doesn´t necessarily seek the spotlights nor applause from enchanted tourists. This kind of Fado is sung and lived in an almost closed circle of lifelong Fado lovers and singers, in a kind of musical séances, where more or less gifted singers consecutively perform their most beloved songs, assisted by 2 professional musicians (one playing the Portuguese guitar, and one a normal guitar). The audience knows all the songs by heart and often enjoys the spectacle eyes closed, musing, sometimes enthusiastically singing along or urging the singer. This kind of Fado is not about stars sharing their most individual expression of their most individual emotion, but rather about a group event where singers, musicians and audience together experience unique vocal moments, where they ponder and celebrate life alike. As a viewer you never feel as an outsider but rather as a participant since everybody enjoys it in his or her own way (even if you’re just humming gently), and the boundaries between stage and audience blurs. It feels like a collective ritual. Soft, warm, friendly, melancholic and healing. Typical Portuguese.

   – Carlos Sobral – 

- Carla Arruda -


An excellent place to enjoy the Fado Vadio is Palácio dos Távora, where on certain Sundays afternoons, Fado lovers connected to the Grupo Desportivo da Mouraria meet, all in their Sunday best. Some singers get a lot of applause and encouragement – like Carla Arruda , a young mother with a beautiful voice, and Carlos Sobral who gets even more acclaim (“Ah riquesa!” , “Lindo!”, or very funny: “Que linda boca para comer pastel de nata!”). One of the stars this afternoon is Vítor Miranda, fadista since he was 6 years old, and trained by “o rei do fado” Fernando Maurício, born and raised here in Mouraria. This neighborhood is known to be the birthplace of Fado, where among others Maria Severa Onofriana was active, a prostitute with a fabulous voice who catapulted Fado into aristocratic circles thanks to her liaison with a royal nobleman. Because of her early death at age 26, fadistas still wear a black mourning scarf on stage. It may be clear that the singers and musicians performing here today are part of a very long Fado tradition, and the club is known as ‘A Catedral’ where all fadistas with some significance have started their careers. Vítor says: “Now that Fado has become ‘Unesco World Heritage’ some claim the genre as an elitist cultural product. But in fact the origins of Fado are very popular, and the elite only started to appreciate the genre much later. This elite is now trying to snaffle the Fado. But look around: it´s only here the genre is really alive.” Vítor also stresses that the Fado from Lisbon is quite different from the one made in other parts of Portugal. “The Lisbon Fado is urban and typical from the capital, and more specifically connected with its cradle, here in Mouraria. There is of course also Fado from Coimbra, but that’s very different because coming from a small town and from a rural setting. Our songs describe the daily life of the city dweller from Lisboa.” Apart from this repertoire, most fadistas also sing the lyrics of the great Portuguese (folk) poets.


 – Vítor Miranda -



- Américo de Sousa -



- Celeste Maria -



- Vera Monteiro -



- Emanuel Soares -


For our diary: the fadistas of Grupo Desportivo da Mouraria will celebrate their 77th anniversary in great style on May 19th from14:30 on in the Salão Nobre da Voz do Operário (Rua da Voz do Operário nr 13, Graça), accompanied by no less than 10 guitarists. And whoever wants to learn to sing the Fado, is welcome during Fado classes every Monday and Tuesday. And on every 2nd Saturday there are Fado gatherings with all the students from 21:30 on. Place to be for this is Palácio dos Távora, Mouraria (Travessa da Nazaré). More info:

On this post Veerle Devos (aka Vos) is taking part with a text that I couldn’t have written in a thousand years. Check out other stories in

Follow in



Cabo Verde

Estas fotografias foram tiradas em Outubro de 2007, numa viagem a Cabo Verde. Têm, obviamente, um grande significado familiar (mesmo vários) que apenas os mais próximos conhecem. Até a mistura entre fotografias de filme e digitais faz sentido, nesta viagem que tocou tantas gerações.

Ao contrário da maioria das minhas fotografias, estas quase não têm qualquer elemento humano. Todos ficaram junto a mim e fora do pequeno rectângulo da câmara. Da mesma forma que hoje continuam presentes sem que haja, pelo menos agora, palavras para o exprimir.


South of England


Estive recentemente em Inglaterra (bem no Sul), naquela que apenas conhecia dos filmes e dos livros. Onde as casas são cotages, os bares são pubs e as estradas são lentas tal como o passar do tempo. E onde as pessoas são tão diferentes das da cidade.

Este post é dedicado aos meus cunhados Margarida e Nuno, os anfitriões desta aventura. Obrigado.

Siga em

Deambulações técnicas: Tal como no post da Golegã, tive que viajar com uma versão ligeira de equipamento fotográfico. Levei apenas a minha nova Fujifilm X-E1 (com a 18-55mm) e uma Leica M4-2 (com uma 50mm). As fotos que aqui veem são da Fuji. As da Leica ainda estão no frigorífico por revelar…! Ainda estou na fase de adaptação à Fuji, mas é uma alternativa fantástica a uma reflex.

I was recently in the South of England. The England I only knew from films and books.

Thank you Margarida and Nuno, my Cambridge in-laws, for organizing this adventure.

Follow in

Technical diversion: Like in my Golegã post, I had to travel light. This time I took with me my new Fujifilm X-E1 (18-55mm) and a Leica M4-2 (50mm). These photos are from the Fuji since the ones from the Leica are still in the films in the fridge. I’m still adapting but the Fuji can be a fantastic alternative to a LSR.

Festival de Máscaras / Mask Festival

Em Maio, todos os anos, vêm de toda a Península Ibérica, grupos de mascarados desfilar a Lisboa. É o Festival Internacional da Máscara Ibérica.

Este ano foram cerca de 500 mascarados de 30 grupos, que desfilaram do Terreiro do Paço até ao Rossio, através dum mar de gente na Rua do Ouro. É um evento a não perder pela cor e alegria que traz à baixa lisboeta.

Siga em
Every May, Lisbon welcomes the International Festival of the Iberian Mask. This year we had 500 masked men (and women) from 30 groups parading in Lisbon downtown (from Terreiro do Paço to Rossio)

Follow in

De pernas para o ar / Upside down


Peço, desde já, desculpa a quem espera um post sobre Lisboa e também a quem espera uma história. Bem, tem um bocado da minha… Mas já que é para falar de quebrar regras, porque não começar já? Assim fica tudo de pernas para o ar…

Num destes fins-de-semana fui à Golegã, à Feira Nacional do Cavalo. Em vez de levar duas câmaras e quatro objectivas, levei uma pequena câmara (uma Fujifilm X10) e duas filhas. Para além disso, a bateria estava a acabar e, por isso, poucas fotografias podia tirar. Resolvi então ver até onde  a câmara aguentava.

Há quem diga que se deve fotografar com o Sol nas costas. Em minha opinião, não podia ser mais errado. O Sol de frente, quando bem usado, produz resultados fantásticos.

Aceite as limitações das câmaras e as imperfeições dos resultados. Nem sempre o “tecnicamente perfeito” é o melhor resultado. E principalmente, não tenha medo de quebrar as regras!

Siga em

I start by apologizing to those who were expecting a post about Lisbon or even waiting for a story. Well, in part it is my story… Since the subject is breaking the roles, I might just star. And it becomes all upside down.

Some weekends ago, I went to Golegã, to its Horse Fair. Instead of carrying two SLR bodies and four lenses, I took the small Fujifilm X10 and two daughters. Besides that, the battery was almost over so I decided to see how far this small camera could be pushed.

Some people say that we should make your photos with the sun on your back. I my opinion they could not be more wrong. That is half way to a dull photo. A back light photo can produce fantastic results.

Accept the technical constraints of your camera and the imperfections of their outcome. Not always the “technically perfect” is the best result. And most of all, don’t be afraid. Break the rules!

Follow in


Quick post – Dançar entre livros

De passagem pelo Chiado, vi a livraria Sá da Costa transformada num salão de baile. Que bela forma de juntar música, dança e literatura…

Siga em

In Chiado, Sá da Costa Bookstores was transformed in a ballroom. What a wonderful way to mix music, dance and literature…

Follow in


Conheci Lila’Angelique durante uma apresentação de rua dos Tribal Baroque em Agosto no Chiado.

Mais tarde, noutra ocasião, voltei a fotografá-la. Era a sua última actuação em Lisboa. Ou seria a penúltima? Lembro-me que seguia para Amsterdão e depois para os EUA.

Espero voltar a ver, de novo, os Tribal Baroque em Lisboa.

Siga em


I met Lila’Angelique, in Chiado, during the street performance of Tribal Baroque last August.

Later, I made again some photos of her last performance in Lisbon. Or was the one before that? I remember she was going to Amsterdam and after that to the USA.

I really hope to see the Tribal Baroque again in Lisbon.

Follow in


Quick post – Artistas di Rubera

Encontrei este grupo no Largo do Carmo. Com origem em Cabo Verde e com som reggae, enchem de alegria o lugar onde estão. Vejam em

I found this band in Largo do Carmo. From Cabo Verde to Lisbon with a full of joy reggae sound. Just see in