Latin American contemporary art well represented at Casa Daros Rio

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Casa Daros Rio, an institution of Daros Latinamerica, is a new venue located in Botafogo for contemporary art exhibition and education.  After six years of great work of remodeling and restoration, the building was reopened to the public with rooms for exhibitions, art and education, library, auditorium, restaurant/café and shop.

I visited the 19th century building in neoclassical style, designed by architect Francisco Joaquim Bethencourt da Silva (1831–1912) – who also conceived the Real Gabinete Português and the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, in downtown Rio – and I was very impressed with the grandeur of the place, with the architectural beauty, and of course with the quality of the works exhibited there. In the first month of opening, the house has received 18000 visitors.

If you have time, you should consider visiting the open exhibition Cantos Cuentos Colombianos, a panoramic view of excellence in contemporary Colombian art. The curator Hans-Michael Herzog has assembled a grouping of emblematic works by the artists Doris Salcedo, Fernando Arias, José Alejandro Restrepo, Juan Manuel Echavarría, María Fernanda Cardoso, Miguel Ángel Rojas, Nadín Ospina, Oscar Muñoz, Oswaldo Macià and Rosemberg Sandoval.

You will also see the exhibition Para (Saber) Escutar (To know how to listen), under the curatorship of Eugenio Valdés Figueroa, director of art and education of Casa Daros. Nossa Senhora das Graças (2008), by Vik Muniz, a photograph of the work made from rubble, within the series Pictures of Junk, is one of the featured works that impress the visitors.

My suggestion is to visit first the Documentation Space, where you can learn more about the artists and its works, and have an overview of Colombian contemporary art production. I guess it is worth, so you can understand better its concepts and artistic concerns.

To close your visit with a flourish, you can take a coffee or have a lunch in the Mira! Restaurant, headed up by the trio consisting of chef Roberta Ciasca, Danni Camilo and Steph Quinquis, the owners of Miam Miam and Oui Oui, two other good restaurants also located in Botafogo.

Some pictures for you have a taste!

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Nadín Ospina *1960 – Hermaphrodite, 2001

José Alejandro Restrepo *1959  - Muse of Paradise, 1996

José Alejandro Restrepo *1959 – Muse of Paradise, 1996

SERVICE

*** Exhibition “Cantos Cuentos Colombianos”: until September 8th, 2013

*** Exhibition Para (Saber) Escutar (To know how to listen): until July 28th, 2013

Time >>> Wednesday to Saturday – 12pm to 8pm / Sundays and holidays – 12pm to 6pm. The ticket office closes half hour before the end of the visiting hours.

Rates >>> Adults – BRL 12.00; Children under 12 years of age – Free; Students and seniors – BRL 6.00, with ID. Free on Wednesdays.

Payment >>> Cash payment R$(real) only.

Map >>> http://goo.gl/maps/ypeXp

How to arrive >>> The Botafogo Subway Station, on Rua Nelson Mandela, is about 10 minutes on foot from Casa Daros.  

Casa Daros Website >>> http://www.casadaros.net

Don’t like tourist programs? Visit Sugar Loaf anyways!

Golden Gate, San Francisco. Empire State Building, NYC. Eiffel Tower, Paris. Pão de Açúcar or Sugar Loaf, Rio de Janeiro.  I know there are some of you – like me! – that just don’t like to do only tourist programs.  I don’t even like knowing a place in a group tour… haha… But visit Sugar Loaf is an obligation in any situation, alone or in a group, if you like or not being a gringo! BTW, there are many tourists from all over the country. The view is soooo beautiful that leaves us breathless. Take a beautiful sunny day to make the most amazing photos of your trip!

WEBSITE

To get more information about the history, tour hours, prices and services, go to http://www.bondinho.com.br/en/.

Bondinho is how we call a glass-walled cable car that runs every 20 minutes between the peaks of Morro da Urca (first stop) and Pão de Açúcar (second stop), with capacity to hold 65 passengers. Each round trip takes 3 minutes and I guess you will want more to appreciate the 360º view of the city, including the Leme, Copacabana, Ipanema, Flamengo and Leblon beaches; the Pedra da Gávea, Maciço da Tijuca and Corcovado mountains, the Christ statue; the Guanabara Bay; the downtown area; the Santos Dumont Airport; Governador island; the neighboring city of Niterói; the Rio-Niterói bridge; and the Serra do Mar mountain backdrop with the famous Dedo de Deus (God’s Finger) peak.

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ABOUT URCA

The Sugar Loaf is in Praia Vermelha, at Urca neighborhood, one of the most calm and charming area of the city. You can explore it walking by its wooded streets, with beautiful and expensive houses.  One of the things that makes Urca the safest neighborhood of Rio is due to its military base and lack of favelas. You will find much more in the area: the campus of the State University of Rio de Janeiro (UNIRIO), the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), the Engineering Military Institute (IME), the General Staff Army Command School (ECEME), the War Navy School (EGN) and the Benjamim Constant Institute for the visually impaired.

Urca has been home to some famous residents (not more than Leblon). One of the most famous and beloved singers of Brazil, Roberto Carlos, live there. And you can see Carmem Miranda’s house at Av. São Sebastião #131.

Urca is close to Botafogo – where is Rio Sul Shopping Mall -, Leme and Copacabana.

TO EAT

Just beside the Sugar Loaf entrance, I recommend Zozô Restaurant, contemporary cuisine. Beautiful décor with a huge tree in the middle of the salon and a deck covered in glass where you can see the landscape. During the lunch (Tue-Sun, noon-4pm), there is a nice antipasti buffet with fixed price per person. At night (only on Fri and Sat, 8pm-midnight), you will find an intimist atmosphere with candle lights. After midnight the kitchen closes and it starts the dance floor. Go well dressed at night.

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SERVICE

Time >>>The ticket office opens at 8am and closes at 7:50pm. The Park always closes one hour after the ticket office.

Rates >>> Adults – BRL 53.00; Children 6-12 years of age – BRL 26.00; Children under 6 – Free. The tickets are valid for only one visit on the day they are purchased.

Payment >>> Cash payment R$(real) only. Credit cards and debit cards: Redeshop, MasterCard, Diners, Visa and  American Express. Check not accepted.

Map >>> http://goo.gl/maps/J7Zcu (Av. Pasteur, 520 – Urca)

Zozô Restaurant >>> http://www.zozorio.com.br