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Volume 54 / Humanities


JOSE M. NEISTEIN, Executive Director, Brazilian-American Cultural Institute, Washington

ONE THIRD OF ALL WORKS ANNOTATED for this volume cover 20th-century Brazilian art, a fact which attests both to the overwhelming number of authors and publishers attuned to modern and contemporary creativity as well as to the cultural vitality of the country. Scholars also contributed interesting and valuable publications to the criticism and history of Brazilian art. On the other hand, publications about cartoons, comic strips, and Afro-Brazilian and Indian traditions have declined to such an extent that there are no annotations on these topics in this volume.

Insofar as important inventories of the Brazilian patrimony are concerned, two items should be singled out, one for Pernambuco (item bi 94003007) and the other on Espírito Santo (item bi 94016034). On the colonial period, we welcome an in-depth study of Albert Eckhout (item bi 93021538); a monograph on Sao Paulo's Luz Monastery and its Sacred Art Museum (item bi 93021534), and a Brazilian edition of some of English art historian John Bernard Bury's best essays on colonial Brazil (item bi 94002988). There are two publications of special interest for the 19th century: Jorge Getulio Veiga's Chinese export porcelain in private Brazilian collections (item bi 93021539) and José Roberto Teixeira Leite's Pintores negros do oitocentos (item bi 94003000).

Among the many worthwhile publications on the 20th century, one should mention the comparative study of Sao Paulo's Week of Modern Art and New York's Armory Show (item bi 94003021) and the political appraisal of Portinari's work (item bi 94003019), both long overdue publications. The role played by the Brazilian upper classes in the development of modern art is sharply examined by Durand (item bi 94003020), while the encompassing study by Walter Zanini of The Santa Helena Group is another relevant contribution (item bi 94003011), as is Ronaldo Brito's monograph on Sérgio Camargo (item bi 94002772).

Arquitetura moderna no Rio de Janeiro is an outstanding research source (item bi 94003014); Pierre Verger's Centro Histórico de Salvador: 1946-1952 is the best photography book on the subject to date (item bi 94002766); and Minas dos Inconfidentes (item bi 94002989) may well be the most beautiful book of photography on colonial Minas in many years. Fontes e chafarizes do Brasil also gathers exceptionally beautiful photographs (item bi 93021536). Last but not least, Retratos do Brasil is an outstanding contribution to the history of political caricature in Brazil (item bi 94003004).

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