São Paulo

São Paulo, Brazil
oil on canvas
67 x 90 cm
Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo
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Tarsila do Amaral’s São Paulo is one painting in a series known as “pau-brasil,” which included characteristically Brazilian landscapes, both rural and urban. In terms of form, Tarsila developed a bold, stylized approach to rendering forms that could capture the dynamism of the country’s rapid rapid modernization. In this painting the artist populates the metropolis with icons of progress: gasoline pumps and an electricity pole stand out in the foreground; in the background, a tram, an iron bridge, a building under construction and a billboard with numbers express modernity’s arrival.