Andrew Nunes is the creative director among many other things at Um Homem na Cidade; born and raised in England by his Portuguese father and mother, Andrew has always been interested in his heritage and the Lusophone world, this interest in some ways stemmed from various members of his family and their involvement in notable events in Portuguese history. For example, Andrew’s great-uncle was a political prisoner in Tarrafal situated in the Portuguese colony of Cape Verde, which was established during the authoritarian regime of António de Oliveira Salazar’s Estado Novo for dissenters who opposed the dictatorship in Portugal.1 In efforts to demand Salazar’s resignation, Andrew’s great-uncle a sailor in the Portuguese Navy protested with other navy personnel in a naval revolt in 1936, known as the “Revolta dos Marinheiros”, that used two naval vessels in the Lisbon harbour.2 The mutiny and revolt was unsuccessful subsequently, costing the loss of some life and all survivors their freedom. Another example of this reverence towards a Portuguese past is when much of Portuguese Africa sought independence from Portugal, Andrew’s father and uncle were sent among thousands of men to quell the unrest in the Portuguese oversea territories, with no choice to oppose the war or face imprisonment. The developing colonial war was avoidable that instead of relinquishing Portugal’s colonies like the British did following the Second World War, Portugal held on to them, as such a war ensued on many African fronts, rapidly becoming an unpopular war for the Portuguese and was internationally criticised. Andrew’s father was deployed in Mozambique and his uncle in Angola. All of these aspects of Portuguese history entwined through Andrew’s descendants form a profound personal connection to Portugal’s past and cultivated with other factors his interest in Portuguese studies – its history, politics and culture that led him to study a Bachelor of Arts degree in Iberian and Latin American Studies at the University of London, where he focused mostly on topics concerning Portugal and Brazil.3 Prior to university, Andrew trained and performed capoeira for many years.4 Furthermore, Andrew holds a fitness instruction and personal training qualification, as well as a college diploma in Humanities.
Andrew is currently conducting a Master of Research degree in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Cultural Studies at the University of London, with his research dissertation on, Contemporary Portuguese Representations of Mid-Twentieth Century Rock ‘n’ Roll and Americana (Sub)Culture.
Evident in Andrew’s choice of postgraduate research but more so by his visual presentation, he is interested in the aesthetics of the 1950s, the clothes and images and the meanings and representations that they formulate and project. Um Homem na Cidade is a project that addresses such interests by showcasing 1950s menswear however, day to day Andrew is not solely influenced by the era, but also enjoys many contemporary things.
- The Estado Novo (English: New State) as well as the 7 year Ditadura Nacional (English: National Dictatorship) before it, resulted in the Portuguese having to endure 40 years of authoritarian rule, that only ended in 1974 with the Carnation Revolution. ↵
- There is an account of the naval revolt of 1936 at the end of José Saramago’s 1984 novel, O Ano da Morte de Ricardo Reis. ↵
- Andrew attended Birkbeck, University of London (or formally, Birkbeck College) which along with 17 other colleges/institutions make up the University of London. ↵
- Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian martial art, dance, game that is accompanied by music played by in a circle, for more information on capoeira see Nestor Capoeira, The Little Capoeira Book, Alex Ladd (trans.) (Berkeley, California: North Atlantic Books, 1995). Also Nestor Capoeira, Capoeira: Roots of the Dance-Fight-Game (Berkeley, California: North Atlantic Books, 2002). ↵