Skip to content



Pencil, pastel and collage on paper
86 x 126,5 x 3,5 cm

A first impression of unease is created in front of the work. Human figures are scattered about, most of them drawn in red while their grimacing smile and twisted postures suggest a situation of suffering and fear. The work is exemplary of Nú Barreto’s practice, who explores the human condition and the political and economic situation of the African continent through his drawings. He translates the consequences of colonisation – particularly Portuguese colonisation in Guinea-Bissau, where he grew up – and the political disunity of African leaders through a myriad of symbols and motives. The fragmentation resulting from the collage and the bright colours contribute to increase the feeling of disorder and imbalance that emanates from the work. Breath is an expression of spatial, political, and human chaos that Nú Barreto hopes to help resolve by expressing it.