Incision by Vhils

film-incision brazil


The growth of the internet, increasing use of travel and world news and interaction at our fingertips have enabled us to become a global community, building relationships across countries and continents that would otherwise have gone unformed. Whilst this brings a wealth of positives and opportunities, there’s also the issue of increased globalisation.

As we grow closer and our networks become wider and closer-knit, it begs the question of whether what makes the individual unique is under threat. It’s people’s differences – different cultures, different ways of life and different outlooks – that make this world an interesting place rich in history, creativity and innovation. Unfortunately as we move forward, it’s often the smaller – yet historicaly-rich – communities that become overlooked for something new, something more ‘exciting’.

This is something Portuguese filmmaker André Santos and street artist Alexandre Farto – aka Vhils – explored in their 2015 short film, Incision.

At the beginning of the 21st century, the Brazilian government moved 90 Guaraní people from their ancestral lands. As an ode to this ‘forgotten community’, Farto has carved their portraits on to the sides of buildings and the doors of their homes. This documentary looks at this work and his reasoning for doing it, as well as the positives and negatives to increasing globalisation around the world.

“The product of creation is often the destruction of something that existed before,” says Farto. “We are all the products of the chaos that surrounds us.”

To see more of Alexandre Farto’s work, visit Vhils’ website. 


Words by Angharad Jones. Film and images property of Alexandre Farto aka Vhils, and André Santos

Sarah Atkinson

Sarah Atkinson

Writer and expert