This essay, the most important text ever written on the life and work of sculptor Agnaldo Manoel dos Santos (1926–1962), was based on a series of interviews with the artist by author, historian, and critic Clarival do Prado Valladares shortly before the death of the artist. Like other studies by do Prado Valladares, this one contributes to the construction of a history of art of northeastern Brazil. In all of his writings, the author places emphasis on the mixing of races—a factor he deems decisive to Brazil’s unique culture—identifying syncretism as a key indicator of “Brazility.” On those grounds, he considers Agnaldo Manoel dos Santos a “primitive and truly Brazilian” artist.
Clarival do Prado Valladares (1918–1983) is a pioneering figure in the historical construction of the arts in northeastern Brazil, mainly in places, like his native state of Bahía, where black culture is central.
For other texts by Clarival do Prado Valladares, see “Arte brasileño erudito y arte brasileño popular” (1110759); “Artesanato e criação estética: tapeçaria de Genaro de Carvalho” (1110696); “A defasagem africana ou crônica do I Festival Mundial de Artes Negras” (1110461); “Helio de Oliveira, o gravador de Pegis” (1110464); “O negro brasileiro nas artes plásticas” (1110431); “ “Primitivos, genuínos e arcaicos” (1110439); and “Tenreiro” (1306676).