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    Sater, Katharine
    Brazilian Bombshell : Candido Portinari's work is best of Latin-Americans / By Katharine Sater
    Citzen Magazine (Estados Unidos). --- Sept. 15, 1940
    Newspaper article – notes
    Sater, Katharine. "Brazilian Bombshell: Candido Portinari's work is best of Latin-Americans." Citzen Magazine (Estados Unidos), September 15, 1940.

In this magazine article, Katharine Sater introduces the Brazilian painter Candido Portinari to the North American public as “a real bombshell.” She is referring to the works presented at the Riverside Museum at an exhibition during the 1939 New York World’s Fair. She explains that with the exception of the Mexican painters—specifically, Orozco, Rivera, and Siqueiros—the Brazilian artist has, without doubt, produced some of the best art in Latin America. Sater mentions that Fortune magazine had published reproductions of Portinari’s work in the June issue of that same year, which had created a good impression at MoMA (Museum of Modern Art); however, that institution had shown the painting Rio de Janeiro at the exhibition, calling it Art in Our Time. Sater refers to the Carnegie Institute prize (1935) for his painting Café, and includes Portinari’s biography as she reviews the works that illustrate the article. She ends her article by announcing Portinari’s forthcoming exhibitions, at the Detroit Institute of Arts and at MoMA in New York in October of that year. 

Leia esta sinopse em português

Apresenta Portinari, fazendo referência aos trabalhos apresentados no Riverside Museum, em exposição patrocinada pela Feira Mundial de Nova York. Diz que, com exceção dos mexicanos - Orozco, Rivera e Siqueiros -, Portinari é o melhor dos artistas latino-americanos. Comenta que a revista "Fortune", de junho de 1939, apresentou várias reproduções de obras do pintor brasileiro que impressionaram até o Museu de Arte Moderna de Nova York que, em consequência, exibiu o "Rio de Janeiro", na exposição Art in Our Time. Lembra a premiação de "Café" pelo Carnegie Institute, em 1935. Fornece dados biográficos de Portinari. Descreve e analisa as obras que ilustram o artigo. Conclui noticiando a exposição de Portinari no Detroit Institute of Arts e a do MoMA, em outubro, formada em grande parte por trabalhos apresentados em Detroit. (resumo extraído da ficha do documento catalogada pelo Projeto Portinari)

Revert to English synopsis

This article is about the movement of intellectual artists and works between Brazil, the United States, and Europe in the heyday of modernism. The article also testifies to the fame in international circles of Brazilian painter, Candido Portinari, in those days. Like Diego Rivera (to whom he is compared in this article), Portinari’s range and output are vast. Portinari’s favorite subjects are rural scenes and urban subjects, refugees fleeing from difficult conditions in northeastern Brazil, key events in Brazilian history (since the arrival of the Portuguese in 1500), portraits of his own family, and book illustrations.  


Candido Portinari (1903–1962), in addition to Emiliano Di Cavalcanti (1897–1976), would become Brazil’s official painter from the late 1930s to the mid-1950s. He was a controversial figure in academic circles and among Brazilian supporters of abstract art. The poet and art critic Mário de Andrade wrote about Portinari’s work during that period [see “Portinari” in ICAA digital archive, doc. no. 781236]. Portinari’s relationship with Lucio Costa led to the former’s involvement in the MES project (Ministério de Educação e Saúde, 1936–1942), the signature building in Brazilian modern architecture. To understand his tile mural for the façade of the building’s auditorium, see “A pintura mural de autoria de Cândido Portinari” (doc. no. 1110857). The sociologist Gilberto Freyre’s version of these narratives in Portinari’s work introduces the idea of “lusotropicalismo” [Portuguese Tropicalism], a theory that posits miscegenation as a positive force in Brazil’s development; see “Portinari” (doc. no. 1075292). His political leanings prompted him to join the PCB (Partido Comunista Brasileño) during the following decade, and in 1947, he ran for a senate seat. Persecuted by Eurico Gaspar Dutra’s anticommunist government, he went into exile in Uruguay.


The North American writer [Mary] Katherine Sater worked in Columbus, Ohio, and then moved to Washington, DC. There is another article from the same period, written on the occasion of the 1939 New York World’s Fair by the journalist Milton Brown; see “O instrumento do fotógrafo ou o fotógrafo-instrumento?”(doc. no. 1110899); and another, by Gladwin Hill, entitled: “Portrait of Portinari, the Brazilian artist” (doc. no. 1110890).

Leia este comentário crítico em português

Cândido Portinari, junto com Di Cavalcanti, se tornará entre o final dos anos 1930 até meados dos anos 1950 o pintor modernista oficial da arte brasileira. Sua presença será alvo de polêmicas tanto entre correntes acadêmicas quanto, futuramente contra os defensores da arte abstrata no país.


b- Circulação de artistas, intelectuais e obras entre Brasil, Europa e EUA

e- Tendências políticas da arte moderna: expressionismo, realismo social, pintura mural

Revert to English annotations
Guilherme Bueno
FAPESP, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Projeto Portinari