I went back to the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil today, for the second time, to see their amazing new exposition REtalhar 2007. I've been wanting to post something about this show for a while but they do not allow pictures in there and I simply couldn't find any good images online until today. I even asked the first time around if I could take some snap shots of the pieces and they said no way. Copyright protection, I was told. But wait a minute, they allow pictures at the MOMA, the Met, the Louvre and even in those snotty Chelsea art galleries for God's sake! But here in Rio I haven't been too camera-happy on any museums or galleries, simply no photographs inside... I must confess that today I even hung my camera around my neck to try to snick a pic there but I was too chicken to break the law.
This is the third edition of REtalhar, the collaboration between artists/designers/creative types and the work of Coopa-Roca , a co-op of 150 inner city seamstresses and artisans of the Rocinha neighborhood in Rio. Their work allows female residents to improve their quality of life, by increasing their income without neglecting their childcare and family duties. In this edition the projects of 20 designers were executed by Coopa-Roca after their original drawings and the results were breathtaking. Fashion designers Alexandre Herchcovitch, Lenny Niemeyer, Oskar Metsavaht, Carlos Miele and artists Luis Zerbini, Pedro Lobo and Sass Brown are among the chosen few. The space is beautifully set out, with soft lighting and cool room dividers made out of thin ribbons, attached floor-to-ceiling. The works are a mix of sculptures, clothing, accessories, video & art installations and photographs. Of my personal favorites I pick jeweler Antonio Bernardo, with his golden crochet gloves adorned with a sewn in ring of semi-precious stones. The gloves are shown inside the building's original pitch black safe vault, atop a black pedestal and lit by a single blade of light. Very dramatic. My other favorite is the work of artist Ernesto Neto, a sculpture of a cube of pipes covered in sheer white net, organic and contemporary at the same time. There are tunnel-like orifices that pierce the work, like entrails or intestines I might say. But the piece is light, ruffly and finished with lingerie edgings, like a pair of panties. Very cool!
REtalhar goes until September 16Th and I highly recommend it to anyone who might be visiting Rio between now and then.