Selarón: A Great Madness

by Tullis Rennie

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An augmented sound walk in Rio de Janeiro

Jorge Selarón was a Chilean painter and ceramist, who settled in the centre of Rio de Janeiro in the 1980s. He is perhaps best know for his work which decorated a set of 215 steps connecting the neighbourhoods of Lapa and Santa Teresa. Whilst the process of working on the stairs took over 20 years, he said “I will only complete this crazy and original dream on the last day of my life”. The work was declared a city landmark in 2005 and featured in the bid for the 2016 Summer Olympics.

The artist was found dead near his home at the side of the "Escadaria Selarón" on January 10 2013, aged 65. This augmented sound walk revisits the site and hears stories that surround the artist, his work and his death.

Recordings for this piece were taken in May and June 2013 during a residency at Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, thanks to the Santander Mobility Scholarship. This work would not have been possible without the help and friendshipof Matilde Meireles and the guidance of Rodrigo Cicchelli Velloso.


released January 10, 2014


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Tullis Rennie London, UK

Tullis Rennie is a composer, electronic musician, trombonist, field-recordist, DJ, improviser, biscuit obsessive and slow-cycling enthusiast. He currently lives in London.

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