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AD Classics: São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP) / Lina Bo Bardi

22:00 - 28 October, 2018
AD Classics: São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP) / Lina Bo Bardi, © Pedro Kok
© Pedro Kok

This article was originally published on August 14, 2014. To read the stories behind other celebrated architecture projects, visit our AD Classics section.

When Lina Bo Bardi received the commission to build a new museum of art on São Paulo’s Terraço do Trianon, she was given the job under one condition: under no circumstances could the building block the site’s panoramic vistas of the lower-lying parts of the city. This rule, instituted by the local legislature, sought to protect what had become an important urban gathering space along Avenida Paulista, the city’s main financial and cultural artery. Undeterred, Bo Bardi came up with a solution that was simple and powerful. She designed a building with a massive split through its midsection, burying half of it below the terrace and lifting the other half into the sky. As a result, the plaza remained open and unobstructed, and in 1968, the iconic São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP) was born.

© Flickr user Juliana Magro © Pedro Kok © Flickr user Rodrigo_Soldon © Flickr user Carol^-^ + 10

Spotlight: Lina Bo Bardi

10:30 - 5 December, 2017
Sesc Pompéia. Image © Pedro Kok
Sesc Pompéia. Image © Pedro Kok

Lina Bo Bardi (December 4, 1914 – March 20, 1992) was one of the most important and expressive architects of 20th century Brazilian architecture. Born in Italy as Lina Achillina Bo, she studied architecture at the University of Rome, moving to Milan after graduation. In Milan, Bo Bardi collaborated with Gio Ponti, and later become editor of the magazine Quiaderni di Domus.

With her office destroyed in World War II Bo Bardi, along with Bruno Zevi, founded the publication A Cultura della Vita. As a member of the Italian Communist Party, she met the critic and art historian Pietro Maria Bardi, with whom she would move permanently to Brazil.

Sesc Pompéia. Image © Pedro Kok São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP). Image © Pedro Kok São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP). Image © Pedro Kok Sesc Pompéia. Image © Pedro Kok + 9