JAMES on the QUADRADO BRAZIL

January 21, 2017 by Laura Gomez


 

MODERN DESIGN
JORGE ZALSZUPIN
JOSE ZANINE CALDAS
SERGIO RODRIGUES
JOAQUIM TENREIRO
MARTIN EISLER & CARLO HAUNER
LINA BO BARDI
BRANCO&PRETO

CONTEMPORARY DESIGN
HUGO FRANÇA
ZANINI DE ZANINE
DOMINGOS TÓTORA
BRUNNO JAHARA
ESTUDIO RAIN

CONTEMPORARY ART
JORGE RODRIGUEZ-AGUILAR
CARLOS VERGARA
RITA LESSA
SANTACOSTA


 
JOAQUIM TENREIRO
1906-1992
IN 1928, A YOUNG PORTUGUESE CABINETMAKER FROM THE REGION OF MELO, JOAQUIM TENREIRO, SETTLES PERMANENTLY IN BRAZIL. AFTER YEARS OF LABORIOUS WORK IN LOCAL WORKSHOPS, WHERE HE WORKS ON EVERYTHING FROM LOUIS XV COPIES TO CHIPPENDALE FURNITURE, TENREIRO SEES HIS CAREER TAKE AN UNEXPECTED TURN IN 1943, WHILE WORKING AT RIO DE JANEIRO’S LAUBITSCH & HIRTH. WHILE THE DESIGN DIRECTOR OF HIS WORKSHOP IS AWAY, HE RECEIVES AN ASSIGNMENT FOR THE COMPLETE FURNISHING OF A HOUSE OSCAR NIEMEYER IS BUILDING IN CATAGUASES, MINAS GERAIS. HE PRESENTS A RESOLUTELY MODERN PROJECT, FREE OF ANY OLD-FASHIONED ORNAMENTS. THE ARCHITECT AND THE CLIENT ARE THRILLED, AND TENREIRO’S PROJECT IS CHOSEN FOR THE FURNISHING OF THE HOUSE. A YEAR LATER, TENREIRO DECIDES TO BREAK FREE AND OPEN HIS OWN WORKSHOP. TOGETHER WITH A FORMER SALES PERSON OF LAUBITSCH & HIRTH, THEY CREATE “LANGENBACH & TENREIRO” AND OPEN A WORKSHOP ON RUA DA CONCEIÇÃO. THE PARTNERSHIP WOULD ONLY LAST A COUPLE YEARS AND BY THE EARLY 1950’S, TENREIRO CREATES “TENREIRO MOVÉIS E DECORAÇOES” ON HIS OWN. IN THE EARLY 1950’S, TENREIRO IS ALREADY CONSIDERED AS THE GREATEST FURNITURE MAKER IN BRAZIL AND THE LEADER OF THE MODERNIST MOVEMENT. USING HIS EXPERIENCE AND HIS MASTERY OF TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS, HE WOULD QUICKLY BECOME RESPONSIBLE FOR CREATING THE VOCABULARY OF BRAZILIAN MODERN FURNITURE.AS MANY OF HIS CONTEMPORARIES AND FOLLOWERS PARTICIPATING IN THE DEFINITION OF POST-COLONIAL BRAZIL’S IDENTITY AND AESTHETICS, TENREIRO WOULD TRY AND CREATE FURNITURE WHICH HAS TO BE FORMALLY LIGHT – A LIGHTNESS IN SPACE, THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH WEIGHT. USING THE STUNNING NATURAL MATERIALS OF THE COUNTRY, PARTICULARLY JACARANDA (BAHIA ROSEWOOD) AND TRADITIONAL WOVEN CANE, TENREIRO CREATED EXTREMELY MODERN FURNITURE, WITH PERFECT PROPORTIONS, OF AN UNPARALLELED QUALITY.IN 1968, TIRED AND AFRAID OF NOT BEING ABLE TO RENEW HIMSELF IN A BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT THAT HAS SEEN MANY NEW CHALLENGERS ARRIVE IN THE LAST YEARS, TENREIRO CLOSES HIS BUSINESS TO DEVOTE HIMSELF TO PAINTING. 1968 MARKS THE END OF THE BRAZILIAN MODERN FURNITURE GOLDEN AGE, THAT TENREIRO’S PREMATURE RETIREMENT SYMBOLIZES. THE 1964 MILITARY COUP HAS SLOWLY LED THE COUNTRY TO AN ECONOMIC CRISIS, WOOD RESOURCES ARE RUNNING OUT AND JACARANDA IS DECLARED UNEXPORTABLE. BAD-TEMPERED AND RECLUSIVE, TENREIRO WOULD BE FORGOTTEN IN THE 1970’S, AND IT WAS ONLY A FEW MONTHS BEFORE HIS DEATH ON JUNE 21ST, 1992, THAT TENREIRO WOULD BE HONORED WITH A RETROSPECTIVE AT RIO DE JANEIRO’S DESIGN CENTER.


 

JORGE ZALSZUPIN
BORN 1922, WARSAW, POLAND. LIVES IN SAO PAULO, BRAZIL
IN 1949, RIGHT IN THE HEAT OF THE CARNIVAL, JERZY ZALSZUPIN, A YOUNG ARCHITECT BORN IN POLAND, DISEMBARKED THE SHIP HE HAD BOARDED IN FRANCE A COUPLE WEEKS EARLIER. LEAVING THE RUINS OF THE OLD WORLD, HE RANG UPON ARRIVAL LUCIANO KORNGOLD, A FELLOW POLISH ARCHITECT WHO HAD AN OFFICE IN SAO PAULO AND IMMEDIATELY OFFERED HIM A POSITION. THE REST IS HISTORY : JERZY MARRIED A CLERK AT A FRENCH BOOKSHOP NAMED ANNETTE, AND AFTER ACQUIRING CITIZENSHIP AND BECOMING JORGE, FOUNDED L’ATELIER IN 1959, WHICH WOULD BECOME ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT FURNITURE COMPANIES IN BRAZIL. STARTING AS A SMALL WORKSHOP WHERE JORGE HAD BROUGHT TOGETHER A TEAM OF HIGHLY-SKILLED CRAFTSMEN, L’ATELIER SOON TURNED INTO A POWER HOUSE, A DIRECT COMPETITOR TO SERGIO RODRIGUES’ OCA, WITH 300 EMPLOYEES AT THE END OF THE 1960’S AND OUTLETS ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY – AND EVEN IN THE US. ZALSZUPIN’S PIONEERING USE OF PLYWOOD AND CHROMED METAL BECAME THE SIGNATURE OF L’ATELIER FURNITURE, BUT THE COMPANY ALSO HAD AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE INTRODUCTION ON THE BRAZILIAN MARKET OF INJECTION-MOLDED PLASTIC OBJECTS – L’ATELIER WAS THE LICENSEE FOR ROBIN DAY’S HILLE CHAIR. IN THE EARLY 1980’S, ZALSZUPIN LEFT L’ATELIER IN ORDER TO DEVOTE HIMSELF TO ARCHITECTURE. AFTER RELOCATING IN THE 1990’S IN PARIS, HE NOW LIVES PEACEFUL DAYS IN HIS HOUSE OF JARDIM AMERICA IN SAO PAULO. IN 2012, HE RETURNED TO POLAND FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 60 YEARS.

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