Welcome to the “Tropical Trauma Misery Tour.” I invite you to embark on this journey through a roofless theater called Media, where the stage represents the farce and media opportunism of the Brazilian president and far-right populist Jair Messias Bolsonaro – The Myth.

In 2018, Bolsonaro was stabbed during a presidential rally campaign. Against a backdrop of polarization, micro-narratives, and misinformation, The Myth starred in an online political campaign where he had complete control over his narrative and self-presentation. This tour investigates how the ambiguity of the stabbing event exposes the network propaganda in the Brazilian political game.

Through a speculative documentary photography, this piece overcomes the political illusions and dissemination of regressive values by digital populists. The fictionalization of reality is a form of resistance toward such ideological shams and manipulations. It devolves into a meta-play – a farce within a farce of the blurred line between truth and political performance.

Bio: Rafael Roncato (b.1989, Brasil) is an interdisciplinary visual artist, editor, and mentor, straddling Brazil and the Netherlands. With a Master’s in Photography & Society from the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague, and a Bachelor’s in Multimedia Journalism, he delves into the nexus of imagery, power structures, and belief systems through semi-fictional narratives.
Drawing inspiration from comics, cinema, and Brazilian modernism, Roncato employs non-linear methods, incorporating video, text and archival material to decode today’s mass media landscapes.
His works have been exhibited worldwide, including at the Nederlands Fotomuseum, Noorderlicht International Photo Festival, PhMuseum Days, Les Rencontres de la photographie d’Arles, Encontros da Imagem, Schwules Museum Berlin, and more.