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Celý september prebiehal na viacerých miestach v Bratislave prvý festival Brazilslava. Áno, na prvé počutie môže názov zvádzať na mierne pochybnú (komerčnú) dramaturgickú kvalitu, no Veľvyslanectvo Brazílie svoj testovací prvý ročník obstálo výborne. Počas mesiaca mohla široká verejnosť hlavného mesta navštíviť široké spektrum kultúrnych udalostí, výstav či koncertov.

Medzi naše highlighty určite patrila výstava súčasnej brazílskej umelkyne Carmely Gross v Kunsthalle Bratislava alebo výstava celoživotnej práce architektonickej legendy menom Paulo Mendes da Rocha (na Fakulte architektúry STU). Práve s kurátorkou výstavy – profesorkou a architektkou zo São Paula Catherine Otondo – sme sa rozprávali o príprave výstavy a odkaze tohto brazílskeho majstra.



School in Alto de Pinheiros / Architect in Charge: Catherine Otondo + Marina Grinover (Base Urbana), Jorge Pessoa (Pessoa Arquitetos)

1) Hello, please can you introduce yourself to our readers?

My name is Catherine Otondo. I am an architect from São Paulo Brasil. In 2013 I received the title of doctor with the thesis: „Design and built space; relations between thinking and doing the work of Paulo Mendes da Rocha „.

On the architect’s work I’ve published several articles and books, and directed the short 29 minutes film with PMR. I am currently a partner in the architectural firm named Base Urbana along with Marina Grinover. We develop projects at several scales of the discipline, from small interventions to urban design projects. Since 2015 I’ve been a University professor.

2) What do you think about Bratislava and it’s overall atmosphere and architecture? 

I enjoyed the city a lot. For it’s size and the way it is sited on the territory: the mountains, the river, and the several layers of history that we can read in its buildings.

3) You are curating a big exhibition of incredible architect Paulo Mendes da Rocha. It’s undeniably a difficult and complex task. What was your original and first idea how to show his work?

Our idea was to do a presentation of the extension of his work that started in 1958 till our days. Paulo has a number of projects that are very different in use and shape but you can also, look at the exhibition and understand his way of thinking and his creative process.


Concrete fireplace view

Paulo Mendes da Rocha

4) Was it a difficult process? How long have you been working on this?

It was a challenging process because there is a big responsibility in how to present such body of work. Also I had never been in Bratislava before so I didn’t now the space which was a little complicated to imagine. But we had a great support from the Brazilian Embassy and the University.

5) Did you have some advisor/co-curator from Slovakia or Europe? Do you think, the overall result is readable and available for Slovak people? Is it mainly aimed for professionals or for everyone?

I mainly had the support of Minister Marco Antonio Nakata from the Brazilian Embassy who has a good eye for esthetics and knows Paulo Mendes’s work. The exhibition is for everyone interested in architecture, art and cities.

6) Despite the enormous work by Paulo Mendes da Rocha, we can think about global architecture and how to treat space well in the big cities. What are you trying to say by the exhibition, what is the main legacy for visitors?

Well I don’t think we can have one single message, but Paulo believes that architecture is a type of knowledge that is universal and a city is the place where mankind progresses. The challenge today is to understand that cities can’t grow indefinitely, that the planet has limited resources, and architecture is a proper tool seeked for this most wanted balance.


da Rocha vo svojom slávnom kresle „paulistano“

Questions: Krištof Budke Editing: Denisa Funtíková

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