BRAZIL IS known for its unique style – from samba to soccer, caipirinhas to Carnival. The 10 + 10 exhibition at Bratislava’s Design Factory points style-seekers toward the country’s architecture, presenting modern and contemporary Brazilian houses via the images of photographer Leonardo Finotti.
“The idea was to make known in Slovakia the work of some relevant Brazilian architects from two important periods: the modern one [between 1930s and 1960s] and the contemporary one, which comprises the last two decades,” Brazilian Ambassador Susan Kleebank said while opening the exhibition first presented during May’s Days of Architecture and Design in Bratislava. The exhibition, which uses photography to showcase the buildings, is now showing at Design Factory through July 28.
The show establishes a parallel between two distinct periods of Brazilian architectural production, featuring 10 modernist houses and 10 others from the past 20 years. Among them are some of the most significant constructions ever designed by Brazilian architects, critic Fernando Serapiao writes in the exhibition catalogue.
“The purpose of this kind of virtual encounter between the past and the present is to understand contemporary architecture by contrasting it to modernism, regarded as the most important period in Brazilian architecture,” wrote Serapiao, who also helped curate the exhibition.
The period between the 1930s and 1960s coincides with the economic and political modernisation in Brazil – two forces which helped establish the work of national designers. The second period includes projects of the recent past including some from this century, according to Serapiao.
Even though many of the buildings were designed and built in the past, all the photos are recent. They were all taken especially for this exhibition by Finotti. All the presented houses are thus captured from the same perspective – that of Finotti – making the exhibition extremely compact.
A total of 200 images showcase the 20 houses, designed by prominent architects like Oscar Niemeyer and Paulo Mendes da Rocha, both holders of the Pritzker Prize, often referred to as the Nobel Prize of architecture. Finotti, who himself studied architecture and is in close contact with contemporary Brazilian architects, selected the houses presented at the exhibition together with Serapiao and Michelle Jean de Castro, keeping in mind the current condition of houses from the modernist period.
“We tried to select the most important ones and which are still alive as some of the houses from this period have been destroyed already,” Finotti told The Slovak Spectator. He said that he seeks to show the most interesting and important pieces of Brazilian architecture as part of efforts to make sure they are preserved.
With just a few weeks left, those who miss the exhibition in Bratislava can catch it in Prague in September or in Vienna in November. The exhibition is accompanied by a rich and interestingly designed catalogue containing all the exhibited photos as well the accompanying texts by Fernando Serapiao and André Correa do Lago.
What: 10 + 10: Modern and Contemporary Houses from Brazil
When: Through July 28, Mon-Fri 10:00 – 17:00, Sat-Sun 14:00 – 20:00
15. Jul 2013 at 0:00 | Jana Liptáková