Itaú Cultural celebrates 30 years of existence with a constellation of Brazilian art

(São Paulo, Brazil)

Showcasing the largest selection from the Itaú Unibanco Art Collection ever exhibited together, ranging from the first work purchased by Olavo Egydio Setubal, in the late 1960s, to the newest acquisitions for the collection and the reconstruction of a public sculpture by Ascânio MMM (removed by the city government in 1989 for restoration, it was deemed beyond repair and was never returned), the exhibition Ways of Seeing Brazil: Itaú Cultural celebrates 30 remember three decades of existence of the institution dedicated to Brazilian art and culture and highlights the series of activities carried out by the institution since it foundation in 1987.

The exhibition, which opened for guests on May 24th and will be on view until August 13th, occupies the entire 10,000 meters plus area of the Oca, one of São Paulo’s architectural symbols, part of the Ibirapuera Park installations designed by Oscar Niemeyer. Curated by Paulo Herkenhoff, Thais Rivitti and Leno Veras and organized in collaboration with the Itaú Cultural teams and Álvaro Razuk’s design, the exhibition presents to the public more than 750 works – 48 of them recently acquired – belonging to the Itaú Unibanco Art Collection.

In 1969, entrepreneur Olavo Egydio Setubal purchased “Povoado numa Planície Arborizada” by Dutch painter Frans Post, the first work in a collection that now contains around 15,000 items, maintained and managed by Itaú Cultural. All works were acquired using the institute’s own funds. Complemented by the institute’s collections of Computer Art and Artist Films and Videos, the overall collection is considered one of the largest corporate collections in the world and the largest in Latin America. Some years later, in 1987, Setubal laid the cornerstone of the project by creating the Galerias Itaú, which would eventually become the Itaú Cultural, one of the most important cultural institutes active in Brazil, with nationwide reach, respecting and giving visibility to the diversity of cultural expressions throughout the country.

To exhibit this history that reflects the history of Brazil itself, the curators chose to present a constellation of 20 sections for the public to follow, making their own connections and discovering lines of continuity and rupture between them. The works occupy all four floors of the Oca with the intent of establishing an expanded reading of the collection. Without following a chronological sequence and instead creating connections and diversified points of communication between the works, visitors are led to make their own esthetic, linguistic, conceptual and political discoveries and create new ways of seeing Brazilian art.

The exhibition also intends to highlight the series of activities undertaken by the institute in the past 30 years: the creation of a collection, the recording of cultural assets, their preservation and the study and dissemination of culture through publications and the holding of debates, exhibitions and an extensive programing

Works by Brazilian painter Candido Portinari, considered one of the most important Brazilian artists of the 20th century, Emiliano Di Cavalcanti, the sculptor Maria Martins, Hélio Oiticica, the Italian-Brazilian sculptor Victor Brecheret and Lygia Clark will be displayed. Among the non-Brazilian modernists is French painter Fernand Léger.

Ways of Seeing Brazil: Itaú Cultural will also showcase important works by contemporary artists, such as Adriana Varejão, Beatriz Milhazes, Vik Muniz, Caio Reisewitz, Matheus Rocha Pitta, Sandra Cinto, Tatiana Blass, Cao Guimaraes, Eder Santos, Ivan Grilo, Odires Mlaszho, Rodrigo Braga, Virginia de MedeirosJosé Bechara, Lucia Koch, Raul Mourão, Arjan Martins, Paulo Nazareth, Tony Camargo, Cinthia MarcelleBerna RealeJaime Lauriano, Ayrson Heráclito and Éder Oliveira. The latter are among the institute’s most recent acquisitions, such as “Bandeira Nacional # 10”, “Novus Brasilia Typus: invasão, etnocídio, democracia racial e apropriação cultural” and “Artefatos # (1, 2 and 3)”, by Lauriano, all from 2016; four works from the series “Cabeças Bori”, by Heráclito, and two untitled works from 2015 by Eder Oliveira.

“Ways of Seeing Brazil: Itaú Cultural celebrates 30”
On view from May 25 to August 13, 2017
Tuesdays to Sundays: from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m

Avenida Pedro Álvares Cabral, Portão 3,
Parque Ibirapuera, São Paulo, Brazil
+55 11 3105 6118

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