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Paulo Werneck, Brazilian Muralist: A Modernist Designer

Join AIA|DC and LA.IDEA for an overview of Brazilian muralist Paulo Werneck's (1907-1987) extensive career and oeuvre. Werneck created and executed over 300 mosaic murals in Brazil from 1942 to the late 1970s, often collaborating with architecture giants like Oscar Niemeyer and the Roberto Brothers.

The audience will learn about Paulo Werneck's legacy spanning different formats and projects, such as:

o            The reconstruction of the IRB Terrace,  Rio de Janeiro

o            Mosaic murals- “Oficina de Mosaicos”, Sao Paulo

o            Mosaic furniture – ETEL, Sao Paulo

o            Rugs- KRAVET – New York

o            Wallpaper – Studio Printworks- New York

o            Coffee Table Book – Publisher TBA, Sao Paulo


Presented by: Gaspar Saldanha

Gaspar Saldanha, Brazilian-born, US-based, is renowned for his textiles. After studying Fine Arts and Industrial Design in Rio de Janeiro, he moved to New York City to specialize in textile design at the Fashion Institute of Technology. In the early nineties, Saldanha established his eponymous fashion brand, producing a line of menswear sold at prestigious stores such as Barneys and Bergdorf Goodman.

In 2008 he joined his sister in reviving the archives of their grandfather, the great Brazilian muralist Paulo Werneck. Since then Werneck’s work has been exhibited in foremost museums, such as: Paço Imperial (Rio de Janeiro), Pinacoteca (São Paulo), the Wolfsonian (Miami), America’s Society (New York) and Blanton Museum (Austin) in the US. Saldanha has presented lectures on Werneck’s work at various design institutions such as AIA New York, Florida University’s Urban Lab and ESDI Escola Superior de Desenho Industrial (Rio de Janeiro). Recently he supervised the reconstruction of Werneck’s first and largest work: seven mosaic murals for the terrace of Instituto de Resseguros do Brasil, a project from 1942 by the Roberto Brothers, with gardens by Burle Marx.

Currently living in Miami, Saldanha works on re-editions and reinterpretations of Werneck’s mosaic oeuvre: http://paulowerneck.org.  He is also planning a coffee table book on Werneck’s acclaimed mosaics.


Organized by: AIA|DC LA.IDEA

Sponsored by:  EYP; Florense; Graphisoft; Porcelanosa


At the completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Explore Brazilian architecture history, though the practice of the artist Paulo Werneck;
  • Discuss the influence of modernist architecture on art and vice-versa;
  • Identify how architectural features affect the display of art; and
  • Explore the legacy of one of Oscar's Niemeyers contributors.