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Roberto Pontual, Cécile Fromont, Cláudia Costa Cabral, Cláudia Costa Cabral, Maria Cecilia Loschiavo dos Santos, Christopher Hartop, Glauco Adorno, Claudia Mattos Avolese and Liliana Herrera

South American country. It is in the center of the eastern side of the continent, bounded by all other South American countries except Chile and Ecuador. Geographic regions of Brazil include the equatorial north, containing the Amazon basin, extensive and scantily populated; the northeast, with a semi-arid interior reaching to the coast and a relatively dense but poor population; the southeast, populous and highly developed, with the main cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro; the southern plateaux, occupied mainly by landowners of European origin; and the central plateaux, the western part of which contains the swampy depression of the Mato Grosso irrigated by the basin of the River Paraguay. The vegetation is essentially tropical, with rainforests in the north, pine forests in the south, caatinga (brushwood) in the arid northeast interior, and savanna grasslands in the center and south. Although its area of c. 8,512,000 sq. km takes up almost half the continent (...

Article

Felipe Chaimovich and Roberto Conduru

Brazilian art after 1980 developed a growing dialogue with international contemporary art, sometimes challenging the latter’s hegemony. The revision of constructive modernism and its criticism in Brazilian art since the 1960s were at stake when young artists faced the globalization of the art world during the 1990s. During the 2000s, a more political concern reinforced collective alliances.

In the early 1980s, Brazil experienced the euphoria of the waning moments of dictatorship, which lasted from 1964 to 1985, and the beginning of a new democratic regime. Dictatorship had compromised the collective project of the avant-garde of the 1960s, as advocated by Hélio Oiticica in the catalog text of the group exhibition Nova Objetividade Brasileira (Brazilian New Objectivity) at the Museu de Arte Moderna of Rio de Janeiro in 1967. Brazilian New Objectivity aimed at a transformation of the national culture by means of experimental art, but dictatorship had prohibited group meetings since ...

Article

Roberto Pontual

(b São Paulo, Feb 22, 1894; d São Paulo, Dec 18, 1955).

Brazilian sculptor. He first studied at the São Paulo Liceu de Artes e Ofícios and in 1913 left for Rome, where he stayed for six years and completed his studies with Arturo Dazzi (1881–1966). During this period he fell under the influence of Emile-Antoine Bourdelle and especially of the Symbolist sculpture of Ivan Meštrović. On his return to São Paulo in 1919 the innovative force of his work immediately caught the interest of the young intellectuals and artists who shortly afterwards brought Modernism into being in Brazil with the Semana de Arte Moderna in 1922 in São Paulo. Although he returned to Europe in 1921, before this took place, Brecheret contributed several works to the event, including some on a religious theme such as Head of Christ (bronze, 1920; U. São Paulo, Inst. Estud. Bras.), characterized by an extreme simplification of the figure and by a geometric stylization that prefigured Art Deco. In ...

Article

Erika Billeter

(b Eisenach, 1882; d Mexico City, 1954).

German photographer, active in Mexico. As a young man he travelled through Africa, taking photographs; an archive of some of these glass plates survives. He reached Mexico by way of Panama, Costa Rica, El Salvador and Guatemala, and took his first Mexican photographs in the Yucatán peninsula. He then opened a studio in Mexico City and, together with Augustín Victor Casasola, became one of the most important photographers of the Revolution (1910–17). What he loved most, however, was the beauty of the Mexican landscape. His book Malerisches Mexico was published by Ernst Wachsmuth in Germany in 1923, the same year in which he collaborated with Manuel Alvarez Bravo, later to become Mexico’s leading photographer. Brehme’s photography was not merely reportage. He sought to capture the spirit of the country rather than isolated events as, for example, in his photograph of Pancho Villa’s horsemen, each in direct eye-contact with the photographer. In this he was inspired by José Guadalupe Posada, who was one of the first artists to capture the Mexican temperament in his woodcuts. Occasionally, indeed, Posada worked from photographs by Brehme and by Casasola. More than most foreigners, Brehme was able to feel real empathy with Mexico, and he became an impressive interpreter not only of its customs and traditions, but also of its historical monuments and festivals....

Article

Roberto Pontual

revised by Gillian Sneed

(b Recife, Jun 11, 1927).

Brazilian painter and ceramicist. Brennand began his training in 1942 under sculptor and ceramicist Abelardo da Hora (1924–2014), and later studied painting with Murilo Lagreca (1899–1985) and Álvaro Amorim, founder of the Pernambuco Escola das Belas Artes. Brennand’s early paintings depicted flowers and fruit with simple lines and bright colors. In 1947 he won the first prize at the Salon of the Museu do Estado de Pernambuco, Recife. He made an extended visit to Europe from 1949 to 1952, living mainly in Paris, where he studied with the Cubo-Purists André Lhote and Fernand Léger, whose tumescent forms had a lasting influence on his work. During this period, he also became familiar with the work of Pablo Picasso and Joan Miró, which inspired him to focus on pottery and ceramics. He was also inspired by the eccentric architecture of Antoni Gaudí, which he observed on a trip to Barcelona in the 1950s. On his return to Recife, where his family had long been responsible for a vast output of industrial ceramics, he dedicated himself increasingly to his work with art pottery. In 1954 he completed his first large-scale ceramic panel. Beginning in 1958 and throughout his career he carried out ceramic murals in several Brazilian cities and abroad, the most outstanding being the ...

Article

Monica E. Kupfer

[Beatrix ; Beatriz]

(b London, Sept 16, 1911; d Sun City, AZ, Nov 4, 1985).

Panamanian painter of English birth. She was one of the first women to make an important contribution to art in Panama, where she arrived in the 1950s. She began her studies in Panama under Juan Manuel Cedeño and continued in Brazil from 1958 to 1960. Her naive style, characterized by a strong sense of geometry and flat, bright colors, was unique in Panamanian art. Giving free rein to her imagination, she painted magical and humorous compositions that bordered on Surrealism, such as Adam’s Fruit Shop (1977; Panama City, Mus. A. Contemp.), at times showing the influence of European artists such as Paul Klee, Joan Miró, and René Magritte.

Gómez Sicre, J. Beatriz Briceño of Panama. Washington, DC, Pan Amer. Un., 1969. Exhibition catalog. Dutary, A. Homenaje a Trixie Briceño. Panama City, Mus. A. Contemp., 1982. Exhibition catalog. Wolfschoon, E. Las manifestaciones artísticas en Panamá. Panama City, 1983, pp. 87, 322–333, 481–484....

Article

Brian Austen

(Hicks)

(b ?Sheffield, 1785; d Port of Spain, Trinidad, Nov 1846).

English sculptor, designer and architect. In 1810 he exhibited at the first Liverpool Academy Exhibition and showed models and drawings there in 1811, 1812 and 1814. These included designs for the restoration of the screen in Sefton church, Merseyside, and for a chimney-piece for Speke Hall, Liverpool, and two drawings of Joseph Ridgway’s house at Ridgmont, Horwich, Lancs. Bridgens designed furniture and furnishings in Gothic and Elizabethan styles for George Bullock. In 1814 he moved to London with Bullock, using his address at 4 Tenterden Street, Hanover Square, and prepared designs for Sir Godfrey Vassal Webster (1789–1836) for improvements to Battle Abbey, E. Sussex, and similarly for Sir Walter Scott’s home, Abbotsford House, at Melrose on the Borders. Two chair designs for Battle Abbey were published in Rudolph Ackermann’s Repository of Arts in September 1817, and Bridgens was also involved in the design of chairs supplied to Abbotsford House in ...

Article

Cruz Barceló Cedeño

(b Río, Sucre, March 20, 1945).

Venezuelan photographer. He took courses in cinema at the Ateneo in Caracas, where his interest in photography began. After winning second prize in the National Salon of Photography, he went to Rome on a scholarship to study at the Centro de Adiestramiento Profesional ‘Don Orione’. His black-and-white photographic work is distinctive in its capturing of physical details and gestures of people in the street, such as their hands, feet and faces, obliging the spectator to complete the figure with his imagination; examples include ...

Article

Ricardo Pau-Llosa

(b Havana, Oct 10, 1947).

Cuban sculptor, active in the USA. She arrived in the USA during the 1960s and in 1979 obtained an MFA at the University of Miami. She worked primarily in three formats: wall-hanging constructions, free-standing sculpture, and installations situated in corners like stage props. Using mixed media, often wood and found objects, she focused on the objective representation of personal dreamed images, reminiscent of the assemblages of Joseph Cornell and Marisol (e.g. Next Room (Homage to R.B.), mixed media, 1986; see 1987–1988 exh. cat., p. 259). Brito exhibited widely throughout the USA, in both one-woman and group exhibitions.

Plagens, P. “Report from Florida: Miami Slice.” Art in America [cont. as A. America & Elsewhere; A. America] 74, no. 11 (Nov 1986): 26–39.Pau-Llosa, R. “The Dreamt Objectivities of María Brito Avellana.” Dreamworks 5, no. 2 (1986–1987): 98–104.Fuentes-Pérez, I., Cruz-Taura, G., and Pau-Llosa, R. Outside Cuba. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1987. Published in conjunction with the exhibition of the same name, shown at New Brunswick, NJ, Rutgers U., Zimmerli A. Mus. New York, Mus. Contemp. Hisp. A.; Oxford, OH, Miami U., A. Mus.; and elsewhere; 1987–1989, pp. 258–261....

Article

Nelly Perazzo

(b Avellaneda, nr. Buenos Aires, May 11, 1930).

Argentine painter and sculptor. He studied in Buenos Aires at the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes Manuel Belgrano and at the Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes Ernesto de la Cárcova, leaving in 1951, and then worked as a researcher for the Centro de Investigaciones de Comunicación Masiva, Arte, y Tecnología in Buenos Aires. He played a leading role in the second wave of artists using geometric abstraction in Argentina, painting asymmetric compositions from 1957 and later making reliefs of plastic, painted wood, and aluminum. As a sculptor he often worked with repeated elements, such as plastic or metal rods with which he created a continuous rhythm describing an apparently curved space. He also used sheets of transparent acrylic to make monumental parallelepipeds and boxes, over which he placed bands of color to create superpositions, coincidences, and dissonances that produce an effect of criss-crossing forces in movement as the observer changes his or her position, as in ...

Article

Veerle Poupeye

(b St Ann, 1917).

Jamaican painter and sculptor. A self-taught mystic and visionary, unknown until the late 1960s, he drew his artistic inspiration from a very personal interpretation of two Afro-Christian Jamaican cults, Rastafarianism and Revivalism. His imagery developed through meditation and techniques similar to the automatism of the Surrealists. The curious limestone formations found in Jamaica frequently served as a source of inspiration, as in Bush Have Ears (1976; Kingston, N.G.). He also made ritual objects, such as carved wooden staffs and decorated musical instruments. During the 1970s he worked in close collaboration with his son Clinton Brown (b 1954), who also received substantial critical acclaim.

V. Poupeye-Rammelaere: ‘The Rainbow Valley: The Life and Work of Brother Everald Brown’, Jamaica Journal, 21/2 (May–June 1988), pp. 2–14G. Mosquera: ‘Everald Brown’, Ante América (exh. cat. by G. Mosquera and others, Bogotá, Banco de la República, 1992), pp. 25–30V. Poupeye: Caribbean Art...

Article

Isobel Whitelegg

(b Havana, 1968).

Cuban installation and performance artist, active also in the USA. In Havana Bruguera attended the Escuela de Artes Plasticas San Alejandro (1983–7) and completed her first degree at the Instituto Superior de Arte (1987–92). Bruguera is part of a generation of artists who emerged during Cuba’s ‘special period’ (1989–94), the period of extreme economic hardship brought about by the country’s sudden isolation from trade and aid following the collapse of the Soviet Bloc. In 1993 and 1994 she published two issues of an underground newspaper entitled Memoria de la postguerra (‘Memory of the Post-war Era’), containing texts by Cuban artists, both those still in Cuba and those in exile. The paper displayed an interest in the affective power of information as it is circulated and withheld, a common theme of her later work.

Bruguera’s use of performance from the mid-1990s onwards brought her work to wider critical attention. In an early piece, ...

Article

Irene V. Small

(Roberto Barbosa )

(b Recife, March 21, 1949).

Irene V. Small

Brazilian multimedia and correspondence artist, film maker, and poet.

His early work of the mid- to late 1960s consisted of drawing, painting, and printmaking as well as poetry influenced by the Brazilian Poesia Concreta and Poema Processo movements. In 1969, the year his drawing O Guerrilheiro was censored by military police, he began to explore experimental practices associated with happenings, conceptual strategies, and new technologies. Beginning in 1970, he teamed up with the artist Daniel Santiago (b 1939), who taught at the Escola de Belas Artes of the Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, to form ‘Equipe Bruscky–Santiago’. In collaborations that continued for another two decades, the pair realized witty, yet politically subversive actions ranging from environmental and urban interventions and performative events to propositions disseminated by way of telegrams, classified advertisements, and the mail. Bruscky developed independent works as well, often harnessing dark humour and linguistic puns to provoke and defamiliarize perceptions about art and institutionality. In ...

Article

Cecilia Suárez

(b Quito, Sept 8, 1939).

Ecuadorean painter, graphic designer, sculptor, installation artist, architect and teacher. He studied architecture at the Universidad Nacional de Bogotá, Colombia. He worked for the Graham Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, DC, and received a grant to attend the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, where he worked with György Kepes. Later he became a professor at the arts faculty of the Universidad Central, Quito. Bueno worked first in graphic design before going on to experiment with the incorporation of technology into art, using laser beams, mechanical pumps, plastic, glass and such elements as water, fire and air, for example in 49 Tubes, exhibited at the Bienal de Arte Coltejer in Medellín in 1972. He also combined visual art with music in such works as Flame Orchards, with music by Paul Earls, which won joint first prize with Kepes in the same exhibition. Exploration into ecological and environmental art led him to experiment with the idea of an aerial view of the urban landscape incorporating military camouflage sheets....

Article

Ann McKeighan Lee

Capital and largest city of Argentina. Located on the south-western bank of the River Plate estuary, it has a metropolitan population of 11 million, almost entirely of European (especially Italian) descent; indeed, the cultural development of the city was largely influenced by the wave of Italian immigrants who arrived in the 1870s. Buenos Aires was first founded by Spanish colonizers in 1536, but it was not until 1580 that a lasting settlement was established. During the first two centuries of colonial occupation, the city of Córdoba was of greater importance, but in 1776 Buenos Aires became the centre of the new Viceroyalty of the River Plate, and since then it has grown continually in size and importance. The few remaining buildings from the colonial period display a range of influences, including Spanish Baroque, Portuguese Manueline style and the Rococo style of Lima (see also Argentina, Republic of §II 1....

Article

Carlos Lastarria Hermosilla

(b Santiago, 1875; d Santiago, 1964).

Chilean painter. He studied at the Escuela de Bellas Artes in Santiago under Pedro Lira and Miguel Campos (1844–99) and under the influence of Juan Francisco González developed an Impressionistic approach to painting that was rational in its emphasis on technique and precise drawing, but also romantic in the poetry animating his landscapes and in its delicate range of enveloping colour. His approach was one of humility, befitting his personality, and it took shape, mainly from the example of Cézanne, in clear patches of colour: light, evocative and with their own unique poetic spirit. Nevertheless, his tendency to synthesize different elements placed him in the avant-garde as a young man, and he had a profound influence on the Grupo Montparnasse a short time later (see Mori, Camilo). Rightly considered one of the founders of modern Chilean art, he influenced later generations both through his teaching at the Escuela de Bellas Artes (of which he was director from ...

Article

Paulo J. V. Bruna

(b São Paulo, Aug 4, 1909; d nr Rio de Janeiro, June 4, 1994).

Brazilian landscape architect, painter and designer. He studied painting at a private school in Berlin from 1928 to 1929, and during this time he frequently went to the Botanical Gardens at Dahlem to study the collections of plants that were arranged in geographical groupings, providing useful lessons in botany and ecology. He thus learnt to appreciate many examples of Brazilian flora that were rarely used in Brazilian gardens, an experience that had a lasting effect on him. In 1930 he entered the Escola Nacional de Belas Artes in Rio de Janeiro to study painting; he also took a course in ecology at the Botanical Gardens in Rio. From 1934 to 1937 he was Director of Parks and Gardens at Recife, leaving when he established his own practice as a landscape architect in Rio de Janeiro. To this period belong the gardens of the Casa do Forte, where aquatic plants predominate, and the gardens he designed for the Praça Euclides da Cunha, where his studies of the ...

Article

Frederick J. Dockstader

(b Pine Springs, AZ, c. 1910; d New Mexico, 1957).

Native American Navajo silversmith. He learnt the art as a young man from his half-brother John and an older Navajo, Left Handed Red, then branched out on his own. He became a successful silversmith, and with his wife Mabel was one of the most active craftsmen in the area, not far from the Hubbell Trading Post, AZ. During the fieldwork of ethnographer John Adair (b 1913) they became well acquainted, and Burnsides was a primary source for most of Adair’s study; Adair’s subsequent publication (1944) gave Burnsides a status that caused collectors to prize his work. Tom and Mabel were frequently called upon to tour and demonstrate their silversmithing and weaving skills, and they made several world trips under the auspices of the US Government Office of Information and of the State Department. Both were killed in a car accident.

J. Adair: The Navajo and Pueblo Silversmiths...

Article

Manuel Rojas Sotelo

(b Bogotá, Sept 8, 1933; d Paris, Jan 8, 1982).

Colombian sculptor. One of the first modern female sculptors in Colombia, Bursztyn introduced industrial materials and an anti-aesthetic language into a conservative art scene. Bursztyn, a descendent of Polish Jewish migrants who settled in the Colombia before the outbreak of World War II, lived in the country during the advent of the so-called violencia política (political violence) that began in 1948 in Colombia and continues to this day. Bursztyn studied at the Art Students League in New York City (1952–4), and later in Paris in the studio of Belorussian sculptor Ossip Zadkine at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière (1956–8). During these years, Bursztyn had a romantic relationship with Jorge Gaitán Durán, a leftist poet and critic living in Paris, and the founder of the journal Mito, who would also influence the magazine Les Temps modernes established by Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, and Maurice Merlau-Ponty. In the early 1960s Marta Traba, the Argentine Colombian critic, described Bursztyn’s formal and conceptual approach as anarchist, though it might better be characterized as anarcho-feminist, highlighting the struggle against the patriarchy as a key component in anarchist opposition to state oppression. Between ...

Article

Jorge Glusberg

(b Paraná, Entre Ríos, Dec 28, 1942).

Argentine painter, draughtsman and collagist. She studied at the Escuela Provincial de Artes Visuales in Paraná and at the Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes ‘Ernesto de la Cárcova’ in Buenos Aires. Taking the cue for her well-crafted works from Surrealism but concentrating her attention on fortuitous encounters in everyday life, she fluctuated between a meticulously detailed photographic realism and an artificial imagery of old porcelain dolls and turn-of-the-century postcards, posters and advertising handbills. Generally working in series, she combined the sinister and the humorous, sometimes in a single work, as in Sublime Portrait of my Mother (1978; see Glusberg, p. 455), a frontal view of a masked woman with a vacant and enigmatic smile. An early triptych, the Family of the Condemned (1974), is in the national collection in Buenos Aires (Mus. N. B.A.).

J. Glusberg: Del Pop-art a la Nueva Imagen (Buenos Aires, 1985), pp. 455–8...