From the early 1960s till the 1990’s, Pedro Ferreira’s grandfather Joaquim ran a trade in discontinued industrial azulejos (tiles) and gathered an immense stock. This ever-growing collection brought him a widespread reputation and from all over Portugal people came looking for rare tiles to repair their bathrooms, kitchens or façades.

When he died, he left his four grandsons with thousands of these tiles, and they decided to spend their free time sorting and filing the unique, still immense collection, in honour of their late grandfather, as well as to archive this invaluable testimony to Portuguese industrial heritage.

PEDRITA has been using these tiles to create fabulous installations, such as a parabolic panel of ceramic tiles used as an acoustic mirror catching the soundscape of Lisbon (Pavilhão, 2016), and a visual composition and reproduction system giving new life to end-of-the-line industrially produced tiles (Used in Grão, 2007 and Best Guess for this Image).

These old tiles - lost and found - just like the found photo footage, are now ultimately used in PEDRITA’s current exhibition at Underdogs Gallery. A small black-and-white photograph accidently found in the street, with the inscription 'my grandfather' scribbled on the back, served as a starting point. 'These images are ‘webless’', Pedro Ferreira says, 'they don’t exist on the World Wide Web, these are unique analogue pieces. That triggered us.'

The Photoshop-worked images were translated into the 8 large tiles installations on view, based on 8 unrelated images that have a weird beauty as well as a hint of a story in them. As always, PEDRITA crossed analogue with digital. 'These analogue images found by chance contain details and compositions we like, and of which we can only try to guess the circumstances in which they were taken. This limbo of uncertainty is beautiful, and we love it when people make their own narrative around it.'

Even though Pedro Ferreira and Rita João didn’t start their careers in the street, like most artists represented by Underdogs Gallery, they feel very comfortable at this ‘cultural platform “that aims at creating space within the contemporary art scene for artists connected with the new languages of urban-inspired graphic and visual culture”. On view until 28 July 2018.

www.pedrita.net

www.under-dogs.net