Skip to main content



We follow ancestral footsteps that teach us the value of telling and listening to stories, the richness of being in a circle and sharing words, food and experiences.

This is an online cycle of narratives that emerges from an in-person meeting, the Vigil of Orality, a night when we gathered to listen to memories and narratives of origin, storytelling, music and poetry around a bonfire in Quinta da Boa Vista park, surrounding the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro.

15 films and 33 short videos make up the Ancestral Memories online cycle, along with a series of new Notebooks Selvagem that are complementary to the studies.


Photos: Ju Chalita e Mariana Rotili


From 6pm until the sun rose at 6.06am the following day, the vigil welcomed 27 indigenous narrators, griots, quilombolas, academics, scholars and spoken word and music artists, as well as more than 200 participants.

A circle around the fire can be the very centre of the world: a space of shelter and embracement, but also of enchantment and openness, from which all possibilities radiate.

The meeting, led by Ailton Krenak, began with a Baniwa ritual, celebrating the launch of the book Umbigo do mundo, by Francy and Francisco Baniwa. The storytelling, which lasted throughout the night, began with Francisco talking about the first appearance of the Hekoapinai (universe-people or owners of the world): Ñapirikoli, Amaro, Kowai, Kaali and Dzooli.

The public also collaborated with the structure of the meeting by setting up a collective table where each person contributed with food and drinks, participating in the construction of our well-being and strengthening the experience of socialising and sharing.

Narrators present at the Vigil:

Ailton Krenak, Francy Baniwa, Francisco Fontes Baniwa, André Baniwa, Diego Emílio Fontes Baniwa, Frank Baniwa, Idjahure Kadiwel, Macsuara Kadiwel, Aparecida Vilaça, Francisco Vilaça, Glicéria Tupinambá, Sandra Benites, Catarina Tupi-Guarani, Cristine Takuá, Carlos Papá, Helena Edir Vicente, Tereza Onã, Pape Babou Seck, Veronica Pinheiro, Luiz Rufino, Amora Pera, Cúrcuma Groove (Rodrigo Maré, Pablo Carvalho, Thomas Harres, Rodrigo Pacato e Daniel Conceição) e Ana Paula Cruz.


On April 13, the Children's Group carried out the action The children created memories at MUHCAB in Rio de Janeiro.

On May 10, the group held an afternoon of activities with the children from Lanchonete - Lanchonete – Escola por Vir.

On May 13, Veronica Pinheiro, coordinator of the Children's Group, offered a fabric painting workshop with natural paints at the Cosmovisões da Florestaevent, continuing the action carried out at MUHCAB in April.


Regarding the reception of the Vigil of Orality in the media, we would like to highlight an article published by the Sumaúma journalism agency on 15 May 2023, entitled "Where is the navel of the world?", also available in English and Spanish. The text is signed by Cristiane Fontes, with photos by Ana Carolina Fernandes, and reports on the experience of the Vigil of Orality and the launch of the book Umbigo do mundo, by Francy Baniwa. 

The magazine Where the leaves fall also published an article about the book Umbigo do mundo, including extracts and some illustrations from the book, as well as Francy's words about her writing process.