_US$ 100.00 ~
João Cândido Felisberto, the Black Admiral, was born in 1880 in Encruzilhada do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Son of former slaves, he enrolls rather early into the Navy. At age 15 he was already part of the 16th Company in Rio de Janeiro. He was Navy's sailor #40, as he joined the institution in their very foundation.
In 1910, now an experienced sailor, having travelled all over Brazil and overseas, Cândido was sent on an expedition to Great-Britain to bring battleship Minas Geraes to Brazil. It was said to be the most powerful weapon at the time, the war vessel was supposedly unmatched in its features and fire power.
Carrying on bad habits from the days of slavery, Navy officers often flogged crew members as punitive action, needless to say that most of the top ranked officers were sons of slave owners while the sailors were widely slave descendants. Fed up with this practice and recently acquainted with mutiny stories from Great-Britain and Russia, such as the famous incident on Battleship Potemkin, João Cândido and his shipmates conspired on taking over the fleet upon their arrival in Brazil.
The mutiny plans had to be advanced as lashing was practiced once again the night before arrival and served as the last straw that deflagrated the sailors push right then and there. Known as the 'Revolt of the Lash', the surge took place on November 22nd, 1910. Taking a leadership role, João Cândido demanded from the Brazilian government banishment of all physical punishing in the Navy and amnesty from all charges related to the mutiny.
The fleet of four ships with a crew of over 2,300 men held Rio de Janeiro hostage for a total of seven days. With canons pointed at the seat of government of Brazil's main building, Palácio do Catete, the president Hermes da Fonseca had no other alternative than to give in to the demands and declared flogging illegal as well as falsely amnestied the sailors involved in the event. In a clear breach of trust, a group of 28 people (that included Cândido) was then incarcerated and tortured in a dungeon located at Ilha das Cobras, RJ. The Black Admiral was the group's solely survivor.
Expelled from the Navy, João would struggle for the rest of his life to keep a job. Top shots from the Navy kept sure he wouldn't last for long in any of the docks he found a bread winner from time to time. Like many of Brazil's unsung heroes, Cândido lived with his family in poverty, passing away in 1969.
The Black Admiral is one of six important revolutionary figures that team-up in the first set of the '!Y Que Venga La Revolución! Collectibles Series'. His memory is preserved and remembered in a limited, numbered and signed batch of silkscreen prints.
Manually printed, the artwork shown here is limited to a fifty copies total run, carefully laid layer after layer in a total of 4 different colors. In the use of the silkscreen technique, it is possible to achieve solid and uniform colors, unmatched by any other printing process. That characteristic is clearly noticed in the pieces, and is attained after a series of steps that comprehend art preparation, photolithography engraving, silkscreen photosensitive emulsion transfer, paint preparation, layer registration and the printing itself.
In this series, the original pencil drawings where given a manual vector final artwork treatment, providing extreme control over the quality and thickness of each stroke drawn, for the best read and reproduction using silkscreening. The digital files where then engraved through photographic and chemical processes onto photolithographies, that are basically high resolution + contrast transparencies on which the designs were imprinted in pitch black. This last step allows large size high precision transfers to the silkscreens, with great control over layer registration and so on.
The silkscreens are covered with photo sensitive emulsion, a pasty substance that solidifies after being exposed to light for a period of time. The black artwork on the photolithography blocks the light generated in a vacuum sealed lightbox, that holds the artwork tight against the screen for precise transfer. After a few minutes the screen transfer is done and the silk can be hosed with water as the parts not exposed to the light are easily washed off. The whole idea is that the paint flows through the silk pores and is blocked in the emulsion covered areas, hence replicating the artwork found on the photolithography.
Now an important step in producing high quality final prints is taking care of the color/layer registration, that means matching and fitting the shapes in different colors properly in the final composition. As there is some expansion/contraction of the artwork in between transfer steps, at this point we need to print a registration reference using the main outline artwork. The fill in colors bleed 0.2mm into the strokes, that are placed on top as the last layer applied on the print, in a technique known as 'trapping'.
The paint was mixed and prepared manually as well, customized according to color studies made on the computer. With our paint mixed we finally can pull it through the silkscreen, using a squeegee, dragging it firmly and steady from top to bottom on each pass.