The videowork The World Beneath the City refers to the urban legend first explored in Robert Daley’s eponymous book from 1959, which tells of New Yorkers bringing home baby alligators as souvenirs from their Florida holidays that were flushed down the toilet once they grew too large. The surviving alligators that ended up populating the sewers were albinos due to the lack of daylight and grew to unfeasible sizes through a diet of discarded junk food.

This urban legend explains the decadence of the city as well as it is a critic to an extreme capitalist society, the myth is a metaphor for the artist’s enchantment vs disappointment with a part of the world he has romanticised and worked about.

The soundtrack is all made with the same sample, the instrumental introduction of the Icehouse’s theme “Trojan Blue”, the lyrics of the song are about Helen of Troy and how she was never tempted by the precious offerings given to her. The sharp and rusty like strings on the score recall the sound of subway brakes.

Henrique Pavão, 2023

The World Beneath The City, 2023

HD video (colour, sound, continuous loop) 
Variable dimensions

Sound Mix & Master - Pedro Abecasis

© 2023 Henrique Pavão