what is it

[un]grounding narratives is an experimental, multidisciplinary analysis and documentation project on the dynamics of the production/construction of space in contemporary Cabo Verde. It relies on participatory mapping and film processes to create a platform of interactive web-documentaries.

In Cabo Verde we observe increasing territorial segregation, socioeconomic disparities, general lack of quality of the built environment, despite development indices and the HDI (Human Development Index) for the country indicating one of the best performances in Africa.

We believe that creative approaches are needed to understand and speak of the impact that phenomena such as the rapid and asymmetrical growth of cities, the large investment in mass tourism, the lack of alternatives of

materials and construction techniques, among others, have on communities and people’s lives.

Given this, [un]grounding narratives focuses on communities facing exclusion, insecurity or marginalization, and engaged in various forms of negotiation with their environment through cultural practices of affirmation and belonging. These contexts are conceived as case stories and (re)constructed as interactive documentaries.

We believe in the need for a better understanding of these practices in order to share knowledge rooted in practices of the everyday, change entrenched perceptions about these communities and encourage critical reflection about the current strategies of territory settlement and development.

The project thus proposes a space for critical reflection and production of knowledge through the creation of a multimedia, interactive and collaborative platform in an open-end process of analysis and documentation.

Through the engagement of an international and multidisciplinary network of researchers, social activists, artists and professionals in order to engender action, influence policy makers and promote a more inclusive development approach for our cities.

The project joins the perspectives and analytical languages of an architect and a filmmaker, with a background of social and political interventions.


Finka Pe >>

Finka Pe is a web-documentary pilot created by Storia na Lugar, an experimental multidisciplinary analysis and documentation platform addressing socio-spatial processes/dynamics.

In 2015, the former bath house building and community space of Lém-Ferreira, one of the oldest neighborhoods of Paia, the capital city of Cabo Verde, was occupied and named Finka Pe (meaning putting down one’s feet in defiance). This occupation, following two previous ones, was carried out in a joint effort between Korrenti di Ativistas (a group of activists) and a group of former gang members from one of the most feared gangs of the city, who transformed it into a community organization.

This web-doc aims to understand the social dynamics, various processes in the production of space and the strategies of urban and community problem solving in Lem-Ferreira through the actions of Finka Pe. 

who we are

César Schofield Cardoso is a photographer and filmmaker, born in Mindelo, Cabo Verde.

His work has a strong current of political contestation and addresses themes such as freedom, citizenship, environmental and urban issues, among others. In 2006 he launched PRAIA.MOV, an urban culture movement in the city of Praia, Cabo Verde, in collaboration with architects, artists and activists.

In 2009 he produced the video installation UTOPIA on the subject of 'freedom'. ROOT(S), one of the videos of this project, received the Audience Award and an Honorable Mention at the Sal International Film Festival, Cabo Verde, 2010. In 2009, he addressed the condition of the ‘ideological prisoner’ in his short film KATHARSIS. In 2011 he was invited to the Biennial of São Tomé and Príncipe for which he produced the video SPRITU, presented at the City Museum of Lisbon in 2012. During this same period, also in Lisbon, he exhibited UTOPIA at Graça Brandão Gallery.

He is the creator and author of the blog bianda.blogspot.com, which has received critical acclaim from the Cabo Verde media.

He co-founded FICINE Itinerant Forum of Black Cinema (www.ficine.org) and is currently the Coordinator of the Department of Cinema and Media Arts at the Ministry of Culture of Cabo Verde.


Patti Anahory is an architect and designer born on the Atlantic Ocean en route to São Tome and Principe where she spent part of her childhood; her formative years were spent in Cabo Verde.

She holds a Masters in Architecture degree from Princeton University and an undergraduate in Architecture from the Boston Architectural College. Her academic work has focused on the questioning of presupposed relationships of place and identity as well as the social and spatial definitions of boundaries in articulation with issues of identity, memory, gender, society of control, among others.

In 2000, she was awarded the prestigious Rotch Traveling Scholarship through a two-stage architecture design competition, the second woman to win in 113 years and the first to travel to sub-Saharan Africa. She traveled extensively throughout the continent [re]searching the relationship between architecture, place-making and identity.

Between 2009-12 she served as Founding Director (2009-12) of CIDLOT, an emerging Research Center addressing the dynamics of land settlement, rapid urban growth and development at the University of Cabo Verde.

She co-founded xu:collective, an interdisciplinary art collective proposing a critical understanding of urban dynamics, architecture, environmental and inter-media studies.