Passages I (1974)
Video, magnetic tape, 12'04", B&W, sound, 1/2 inch open reel

Filmed by Jom Tob Azulay in Rio de Janeiro. Anna Bella Geiger moves along flights of stairs. In an interview with Hans Ulrich Obrist (2018), the artist states, “In Passages I, I chose three staircases here in Rio de Janeiro, the first of these was inside an art nouveau building that was going to be demolished. I climb those stairs three times ‘emulating’ a looping system. That is, I actually climb the same staircase three times repeatedly. The second staircase is one located in the Catete neighborhood, at Rua Santo Amaro, 35. This staircase (to this day) connects the residents of the houses up there and has existed for over a hundred years […]. I lived in one of those houses next to the staircase. It has more than 160 steps, which I climb in that video. The third one is in the building of the Benjamin Constant Institute, the headquarters of the institute/school for the blind, it is on Av. Pasteur, in Praia Vermelha. I chose it because of the absurdity of this being the building that harbors the blind. […] The sound recorded in this video, Passages I, captures the three environments. In the first of them, the sound of the footsteps was what interested me. Also because the three climbs actually do happen. On the steps of Santo Amaro street you hear a child shouting a few words as I pass by their house in the favela. On the Institute’s stairs you can hear the traffic on the street.”

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