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The aesthetics of conversion: the Engenho de Dentro studio and concrete art in Rio de Janeiro (1946-1951)

In this article I argue that the modernist aesthetic program in post-war Rio de Janeiro, geared towards national construction, competed with a new aesthetic project founded on the universalism of concrete forms. Rather than reflecting the influence of foreign or national avant-garde movements, this change arose from the impact a series of social relations and practices that imposed the recognition of new artistic values. To examine this phenomenon, I reconstruct the history of the Engenho de Dentro Studio, the locus of a sui generis sociability that united young artists, an art critic and artists interned in the Pedro II National Psychiatric Centre.

Concrete Art; Virgin Art; Engenho de Dentro Studio; Abraham Palatnik; Almir Mavignier; Ivan Serpa; Mario Pedrosa

Departamento de Sociologia da Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas da Universidade de São Paulo Av. Prof. Luciano Gualberto, 315, 05508-010, São Paulo - SP, Brasil - São Paulo - SP - Brazil