The multifaceted work artist Pedro Barateiro has been developing doesn’t relate directly to the materials or the plastic mediums available. Sculpture, installation, video, painting, drawing, photography and text have all served a broad field of action in the search of a code on senses and meanings of the image. Starting from an extensive recollection of visual and written documents on a diversified range of contexts, realities and cultures, the artist – much like a critic-anthropologist – reuses this information to recreate new concepts and proposals. Without being dogmatic or affirmative, the interrogations of Barateiro exceed the mere addition of the presented parts. The relationship between the various elements reflects a careful attention on the perception of reality and it determines the fragmented and imprecise decoding of that same reality. In this sense, the ready-made objects and images become a vocabulary that is very much like a complex alphabet. To a greater extent, the language the artist produces is enough to stand on its own feet. However, the introduction of popular contexts of colonialism or modernist architecture, among others, present another political, historical and social dimension.
The narrative starts with the description of two events happening simultaneously, the cutting down of a palm tree and the sound of a demonstration against austerity outside the Portuguese Parliament. The two events become related, in unison, reflecting the present situation. While, on one side, the palm trees are being cut because of the red weevil plague affecting specific types of palm trees brought from African ex-colonies, the demonstrations against austerity, on the other side, happening in southern European countries like Portugal, Spain and Greece, considered as toxic assets the EU, are identified as the roots of economic crisis. These two events find a parallel in the film, creating a connection between natural and social systems.