The Congresso Internacional Extraordinário de Críticos de Arte (CIECA) took place in Brasilia, São Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro from September 17 to September 25, 1959. The theme of the event—“A cidade nova, síntese das artes”—was proposed by critic Mário Pedrosa who presided over its inauguration and closing. The lectures of the foreign critics and architects who participated in the congress generated important debates on the production of art and architecture in Brazil.
Writer and journalist Vera Pacheco Jordão (1910-80) was in charge of the visual arts column for Rio de Janeiro-based newspaper O Globo. This article on the CIECA was, by chance, the first text she wrote for that column; she would dedicate a total of seven articles to the event and its organizers, establishing, with her remarks and criticism, an antagonistic polemic in response to the congress’s “positive” vision. This first text in the series sums up the topics she would address in the following articles.
For further reading on the CIECA, see Werner Haftmann’s “As artes maiores na cidade” (doc. no.1110405); Mário Pedrosa’s “A cidade nova, síntese das artes” (1086503) and “Lições do congresso internacional dos críticos” (1086667); and Lucio Costa’s “A crise da arte contemporânea” (1110342).