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  • Rio´s revitalized artistic neighbourhood pulls in crowds
    The first weekend in September saw thousands of people flocking to the port-side Gamboa neighbourhood of Rio de Janeiro for ArtRio 2013. The art fair featured works from over 100,000 galleries from around the world. Last year´s event pulled in 120,000 to the old revitalized port hangers which will house the works.
    It´s the latest event to be held in the revitalized port area of Rio de Janeiro is quickly developing a reputation as an artistic hang out. The walls of the old abandoned transport companies opposite ArtRio have long been used by street artists and it comes as no surprise that a parallel event Art Rua, was held nearby. 55 panels of graffiti were displayed as well as palestras and music shows.
    Nearby Morro de Conceição with its colourful small colonial houses has a long history of art. Being traditionally a ´cheaper´ area of Rio many artists have their studio´s here. These can now be visited as part of a tourist trail. The area is also playing host to new cafes, bars and bohemian nightlife such as the weekly samba sessions at Pedra do Sal.
    The crowning glory of the new revitalized area however is MAR, or the Museum of Art Of Rio. The multi-million dollar art museum, which opened in March 2013, marks the entrance to the neighbourhood. It’s a stunning building, an eclectic old mansion house, once belonging to Emperor Dom Joao V1 of Brazil, and an old bus station. Both are joined and topped by an undulating white roof by architect Bernardo Jacobson. The museum draws people from around the world and the local community who are able to visit for free. Who knows, as the neighbourhood grows, they may just carry on the areas artistic tradition.
    Art Rio took place from the 5-8th September 2013.
    Photo: © Helen Clegg






  • To have an uninterrupted view of the iconic Sugar Loaf Mountain from their lounge is a dream for many but recently in Brazilian architect Chico Gouveia created just that, at the foot of the mountain! Pao de Acucar, as Cariocas call it, was just one of the unique settings for the project "The House as a postcard" organised by Brazilian newspaper OGlobo.
    http://oglobo.globo.com/imoveis/a-sala-de-estar-de-chico-gouvea-no-aterro-8566429
    Chico designed and created a living room to a backdrop of the mountain. The idea was to put together a contemporary room, which would both sympathise and contrast with the view. " I grew up in Rio and was always in love with the city," says Chico " I chose Sugar Loaf Mountain as the view for my living room because its such an important reference...this beautiful natural monument inspired me to create a room where people would like to read and be in contact with art”.
    He specifically concentrated on designs that reflect the naturalistic aspect of the city and country using pieces from both Brazilian designers and others. One of the principal pieces is by Polish artist Frans Krajeberg and uses wood rescued from the illegal burning of forests in Brazil.
    “ I designed the living room as if it was for me, it’s contemporary, Brazilian, sophisticated…if the sun wasn’t so strong I could relax here right now” joked the architect.
    Chico’s room is one of four being created at specific landmarks across the city of Rio.
    (This piece is based on an article which appeared in OGlobo 02/06/2013, Photo: Guito Moreto for OGlobo)






  • First launched in 1987 by a group of friends who wanted to raise the profile of design in Brazil, Casa Cor is now the largest architecture and design event in the Americas and the second largest in the world, attracting over 620 thousand people every year. Following on from the tradition established in the first event, which saw 25 design professionals stamp their mark on 22 indvidual rooms in a private house São Paulo, Casa Cor Rio will open on the 3rd of October in one of the city´s most historic buildings, a former hotel that dates back to the belle-epoque and lines Flamengo´s charismatic Av. Rui Barbosa. Drawing together Brazil´s top architects, designers and decorators, Casa Cor provides the space for them to set their creative spirits free, working in collaboration to individually style each of the historic rooms, and inject a new lease of life into the former hotel while offering visitors the cutting edge in design trends and ideas spread over 3 levels.



    Intown take to the Casa Cor floor for the first time this year, working in partnership with Casa & Gourmet Shopping, they have designed a space on the comercial floor of the exhibition which will function as a lounge area to host gourmet events, mirroring the concept of recently launched Casa&Gourmet Shopping, which aims to bring together design and culinary art. The space will feature furniture by design legend Sergio Rodrigues, lighting from Lumini and a selection of Brazil´s hottest emerging artists, including a serious contribution from graffiti artists Toz. For a heady shot of talent derived from design inspiration drawn from across the generations, head to Casa Cor from the 3rd of October-



    Details



    When: 03 de Outubro a 19 de Novembro Tuesday to Sunday: from 12h00 to 22h00

    Where: Av. Rui Barbosa nº 762 - Flamengo - Rio de Janeiro - RJ







  • As Olympic fever reaches crescendo as the final week of London 2012 kicks off, organizers, fans and failed athletes have already set their sights towards the next Olympic stage- Rio 2016. The choice of the iconic Somerset House as the home for the Brazilian committee and pop-up CasaBrasil was a very smart move: Not only does it provide a suitably elaborate base to showcase Brazilian creativity and home grown talent in the form of art exhibitions and free concerts lead by samba bands and Bossa Nova legends, it has created a honey-trap to attract big British corporations and investors to a series of meetings and networking events organized by Rio Negocios to promote Rio as the next Olympic city, over-run with business opportunities. While satellite cultural homes (National Hospitality Houses) have sprung up across the city, with a Dutch beer garden at Holland House and an African culture display at Kensington Gardens, these were created purely as cultural hubs to draw nationals and supporters to watch the Games together. With Casa Brasil, the message from London is that Rio means business.

    In the wake of hosting Rio+20 in June, heralded as the primary international conference on the environment and sustainability of the decade, Rio appears to be committed to carrying its green credentials forward and outdoing London when it comes to Olympic sustainability. With the construction of the Olympic Village in East London, much has been made of the revitalization of a formerly destitute waste-land and the lasting effect it will have on local communities, with both the Olympic Park and the Athletes’ Village to be transformed into residential neighborhoods as the second phase, post-Olympics, is rolled out. London is also the first Olympic Games to monitor its Carbon footprint throughout construction, with temporary stadiums such as the Velodrome and Basketball arena set to broken down and almost completely recycled – the aim is that everything that is demolished will be re-used. While London has succeeded in a 98% success rate, Rio is aiming for 100%.

    As well as matching London’s achievements, Rio aims to go one step further in planning a Carbon Neutral Olympic Games, where all carbon omission are neutralized through the reforestation of areas such as Parque de Pedra Blanca near the Olympic Park, alongside using predominantly local rather than imported materials for construction and creating a concrete factory next to the Village to save on transportation of raw materials. And although Rio’s Olympic Park will be located in Barra, an area that is already much better valued than its London equivalent was back at the time of bidding, it will benefit from the considerable investment in eco projects (such as cleaning and maintaining Jacarepagua lake), alongside an over-haul of the transport system, something the city has long been crying out for. Fast bus and tram links set to criss-cross the city, and an extended metro line will see public transport usage rise from 16- 60%. The neighborhoods planned to evolve out of Rio’s Olympic Park will be intelligently designed to create a more hermetic community- something that Barra, with an American style highway as its backbone, has long been lacking. Energy efficiency and reduction of water waste are a few of the sustainable features due to be built into the new developments, each designed under Leed (Green Building Council) specifications that will see these new Olympic neighborhoods become the blueprint for urban development in the region.

    So far, so good: Plans for Rio look set towards the target, the question now is if they can out-do what London has already proved.