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Fundação de São Vicente, by Benedito Calixto: composition, musealization and appropriation (1900-1932)

Grant number: 16/14582-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2016
Effective date (End): October 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Museology
Principal Investigator:Paulo César Garcez Marins
Grantee:Eduardo Polidori Villa Nova de Oliveira
Home Institution: Museu de Arqueologia e Etnologia (MAE). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo, SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):18/00194-3 - History painting in Brazil and France in the end of XIX century: Benedito Calixto experience at Académie Julian, BE.EP.MS

Abstract

Historical paintings are a key theme in the debates on the role of history museums in creating visual narratives about the past. In this sense, Fundação de São Vicente, by Benedito Calixto, offers a privileged opportunity for reflection on this issue, since it is one of the largest paintings of this genre produced in Brazil. Commissioned for the official celebrations of the fourth centennial of the discovery of Brazil and made in large format, the painting was incorporated into Museu Paulista's art collection still in 1900, the same year it was finished. The painting, which refers itself to an event occurred in 1532, was paradoxically commissioned for an event actually occurred in 1500, in the current coast of Bahia state. It was since then mobilized as an important collection item in the construction of a museum narrative that provides the people of São Paulo leadership and protagonism in the brazilian national constitution. This project attempts to understand the debate around its musealization, as well as its social appropriation until the celebration of São Vicente foundation's fourth centennial, in 1932. This project is part, therefore, of the discussions on the historicity of musealization processes of art in museums of history and the imaginary dimensions resulting from this process.