Made in Childhood

Classified as children gone astray, lost teenagers, futureless gaze, expression of affections reduced to the harsh and crude circumstance of eking out a living or, at least, trying to.

Classified with pairs of calloused hands, the lines of which tell life stories of an insecure, tenuous stroke, so often cut short, devoid of glitter or glory; hands which work, which grab, pick up, sew, hammer, but hands (almost) never touched by others that might love them or give them guidance, hands of arms which never embrace because someone else also forgot to embrace them, arms as the extension of a body which hasn’t been cared for, body as master of a growth so fast that the soul of childhood has already been left behind, dead.

Classified by life as the unrecalled, or, at the very most, present in the act of empty circumstantial speeches, but never truly rendered upon canvases exposed in places which are seen, where they can be observed and appreciated, praised even, in days taken with a pinch of pride and relevance.

Declassified, therefore. Alive only as part of a whole which has never been brought together, which has never been said, written or painted in colour by a palette of the true expression of their whole life, of their whole innocence, of the joy, the shrewdness and the wisdom, even.

Reclassified, yet, and now truly recalled by the oeuvre of Carlos No, in a place where all who wish may truly and unconditionally accept them, after “searching” “with vigour” in an unequivocal message:

“Children, lads, nippers, kids”, call you what they may, there is after all a worthy space for your existence, a dimension which renders with honour and justice the need for the space and the time to (still) be able to dream of a “when I grow up I wish to be…”.

The will to be. And by way of art and by means of the art of Carlos No, the determination to be, at last, classified through the possibility of having a future “made in childhood” which, as in a fitting story, ends with the wish for a “and they lived happily ever after”.

Pedro Strecht
Lisbon, July 2006