Image of paulo mendes da rocha praca do patriarca pmrpa 16 ©Nelson Kon in C-Guide tributes to Paulo Mendes da Rocha by including São Paulo in its network of cities - Cosentino

C-Guide tributes to Paulo Mendes da Rocha by including São Paulo in its network of cities

The world of architecture has been shaken this week by the sad news of the death of renowned Brazilian architect Paulo Mendes da Rocha.

As a special tribute from the Foundation for Contemporary Architecture and the Cosentino Group, which collaborate in the development of C-Guide, São Paulo has been incorporated into its platform as of this Wednesday, making its most outstanding architecture developed from 1979 to the present day available completely free of charge.

São Paulo thus becomes the first Latin American city to be included in C-Guide. A metropolis of 12 million inhabitants known for its dynamism and contrasts that find expression in its contemporary architecture The selected works range from exquisite suburban family homes located in luxury housing estates (e.g. Boaçava House by MMBB Arquitetos) to commendable regeneration projects in favela neighbourhoods such as the Favela do Sapé housing development project by Pessoa Arquitetos and Base Urbana.

The city’s contemporary architecture responds to an urban fabric that alternates skyscrapers –with very interesting examples of high-rise buildings such as the Itaim Tower by the Spaniards b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos–, with low-rise urban housing, such as the C. J. House by Andrade Morettin Arquitetos.

Image of paulo mendes da rocha sesc 24 de maio 3MG 0277 ©Nelson Kon in C-Guide tributes to Paulo Mendes da Rocha by including São Paulo in its network of cities - Cosentino

São Paulo thus becomes the first Latin American city to be included in C-Guide. A metropolis of 12 million inhabitants known for its dynamism and contrasts that find expression in its contemporary architecture The selected works range from exquisite suburban family homes located in luxury housing estates (e.g. Boaçava House by MMBB Arquitetos) to commendable regeneration projects in favela neighbourhoods such as the Favela do Sapé housing development project by Pessoa Arquitetos and Base Urbana.

The city’s contemporary architecture responds to an urban fabric that alternates skyscrapers –with very interesting examples of high-rise buildings such as the Itaim Tower by the Spaniards b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos–, with low-rise urban housing, such as the C. J. House by Andrade Morettin Arquitetos.

Image of paulo mendes da rocha mube pmrmu 07 ©Nelson Kon in C-Guide tributes to Paulo Mendes da Rocha by including São Paulo in its network of cities - Cosentino

Contemporary architecture in São Paulo takes its roots in the Brazilian modern tradition, which is characterised by a particular interpretation of the language of the ‘international style’. This tradition can be seen in the Niemeyer’s Ibirapuera Auditorium or the extensive work of the Pritzker Prize winner Mendes da Rocha, with remarkable examples like the MuBE Sculpture Museum or the Chapel of St. Peter, both of which have been awarded the guide’s highest score -CCC-.  The next generation of this great architectural tradition is represented by studios like Brasil Arquitetura, with projects as impressive as the recent Praça das Artes.

Finally, it is worth mentioning what is perhaps the greatest contribution of contemporary architecture to the city: the excellent civic and meeting spaces represented by works such as the SESC 24 de Maio or the Jabaquara Cultural Centre and, of course, the SESC Pompéia, by the brilliant architect Lina Bo Bardi, a pioneering work in the reuse of industrial buildings for civic and cultural purposes, and which has had a major impact on the best architecture of recent years around the world.

Image of paulo mendes da rocha pinacoteca do estado pmrpi 09 ©Nelson Kon in C-Guide tributes to Paulo Mendes da Rocha by including São Paulo in its network of cities - Cosentino

The presentation event

The presentation event, which was held at the Higher Technical School of Architecture of Seville (ETSAS), on the occasion of the closing cultural day of the academic year, organised by the Aula de Cultura of the School, included a live demonstration of the use of the guide, whose interface has also just been extensively updated to improve the user experience.

This was followed by a debate chaired by Ramón Pico –recently appointed as elected Director of the School–, in which Sol89Hombre de Piedra and Francisco Daroca, all Board Members of the Foundation for Contemporary Architecture and professors at the School, reflected on the potential of such a virtual tool and the frictions between the way architecture is made on a local and global scale, which is of particular interest to the guide’s editorial team.

Córdoba (Spain)

The Foundation’s activities coordinator, Carlos Anaya, announced that the next city to join C-Guide will be Córdoba (Spain), thanks to the interest shown by the city’s Municipal Institute for Economic Development and Employment (IMDEEC, in Spanish), which considers C-Guide to be an effective tool for the international positioning of its city-brand in a global network of excellent contemporary architectural heritage. In addition, a participatory process has been launched, in which any user can propose the incorporation of works in this Andalusian city.

According to Santiago Alfonso, Vice-President of Communication and Corporate Reputation at Cosentino Group, ‘it is a great satisfaction for us that C-Guide now incorporates to its growing list a great city like São Paulo, where Cosentino has extraordinary commercial facilities. The C-Guide is an initiative that we are committed to because of its high contribution to the knowledge of architecture and urban planning, generating conversations and debates among its users’.

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