The Powerful World of Lina Bo Bardi

For its summer programs, the Museum of Arts and Design dubbed a film series under the title “Midcentury Masters,” which focuses on prominent postwar architects and designers. Last evening, I went to see the film on Italian-Brazilian modernist legend “Precise Poetry” by Belinda Bukschcio. The documentary focuses on Bo Bardi’s iconic buildings which she designed in Brazil from the year she emigrated in 1946 until her death in 1992. Released in 2014, the year of what would have been her 100th birthday, it is based on wonderful shots of her vast and original body of work, combined with a collection of interviews in Portuguese with friends, and associates. Moving from her São Paulo Museum of Art (1947), to her home, known as the Glass House (1951), to the Centro de Lazer Fábrica da Pompéia (1986), to the furniture she designed using local woods, ‘Precise Poetry’  gives a glimpse into her professional life, but lacks to tell about the story of the private life of the woman behind these iconic brutalist buildings. I wish it would highlighted on her work as a woman living in mid-century Brazil, about her family, about combining her heroic role with the private life that she shared with her husband art critic and journalist Pietro Maria Bardi. But to summarize, it is a fresh introduction to Bo Bardi, and I particularly loved the quote “I’m an architect! I can’t go through walls! All I can do with walls is to break them down.”

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