Lina Bo Bardi: Habitat is a panoramic exhibition co-organized by the Museu de Arte de São Paulo Assis Chateaubriand (MASP), the Museo Jumex, Mexico City, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA), which casts a look into the life, work and cultural legacy of Italian-Brazilian architect Lina Bo Bardi (1914-1992). As an Italian immigrant in Brazil, Bo Bardi understood that European modernist ideas were not applicable to Latin America without adaptations, cross-pollination and dialogues with the local social and cultural context. This realization allowed her to dive into the context and, in her Brazilian habitat, create a unique and radical language of design, architecture and curatorship.
The exhibition is organized around three axes – Lina’s habitat, Rethinking the museum and From Glass House to hut – and will focus on Bo Bardi’s prodigious production, with her architectural and furniture designs, editorial ventures and pedagogic, expographic and curatorial proposals for museums and cultural centres. The exhibition’s core topics are organized around projects that were fundamental to her career, as well as decisive moments of the architect’s personal history, including when the Bardi couple arrived in Brazil, MASP and her radical exhibition space with glass easels, the Glass House, Habitat magazine, her experience in Salvador, Bahia, the exhibition The Hand of the Brazilian People, the theatre constructions and stagecraft designs, SESC Pompeia and a wide selection of her furniture designs. On opening day a 272-page fully illustrated catalog will be released with eight essays, archived material and translations of Bo Bardi’s writings.
Curatorship: José Esparza Chong Cuy, curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA), Julieta González, artistic director, Museo Jumex, Mexico City, and Tomás Toledo, chief curator, MASP