Lisboa Capital of Nothing


a month-long event comprising public art, communitarian initiatives, workshops and debates around territorial, historical and social issues of the Marvila neighborhood. Lisbon, Portugal, 2001.

initiative: extra]muros[ cultural association for the city
in cooperation with Marvila district council
direction: Mário Caeiro
coordination: Teresa Alves, Daniela Brasil, Luis Seixas


In the same year that Porto was announced “Capital of Culture”, we declared Lisbon “Capital of Nothing”. Nothing special. Marvila was, at the time, an area that had the stigma of being “dangerous”, that suffered a certain prejudice for being punctuated by buildings of multicultural- and social-housing; a place that had suffered lots of fractures in its urban/rural fabrics; a place full of incongruities and uncertainties; a place full of potentialities. We were interested in activating those sleeping potentialities as well as inquiring into the relevance of art and culture in society. The event lasted for one month – the whole process for two years. It involved more than 100 activators and participants, among them artists, architects, geographers, designers, sociologists, local administrators and local populations. It aimed to uncover hiding possibilities and to create platforms that foster people’s self esteem. Capital of Nothing raised debate, created contacts, and persisted throughout time with an intangible visibility.


Lisboa Capital do Nada, Marvila 2001
Create, debate, intervene in public space.
Extramuros: Lisboa, 2002.
English and Portuguese. 496pp


tagged under: 2001 Daniela Brasil publication