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The United States in the São Paulo art Biennial: a plot of the Cold War?

Grant number: 17/08562-9
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research
Effective date (Start): December 28, 2017
Effective date (End): June 27, 2018
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Arts - Art Fundamentals and Criticism
Principal Investigator:Dária Gorete Jaremtchuk
Grantee:Dária Gorete Jaremtchuk
Host Investigator: Bryan McCann
Host Institution: Escola de Artes, Ciências e Humanidades (EACH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: Georgetown University, United States  


The objective of this project is to analyze the participation of the United States in the São Paulo Biennial during the years 1959 to 1979, period corresponding to the Cold Cultural War in Latin America. The argument considered here is that these artistic representations were related to the official political perspective of the US government, which was to prevent the Cuban Revolution from proliferating across the continent. Specific strategies of approximation and action were then drawn to, it was believed, prevent the repetition of the communist experience. In this sense, the Biennials of Venice and São Paulo can be considered showcases in the scenario of the Cold War, considering the constant comparisons with the participation of the countries of the Soviet Block in both spaces. Therefore, this research intends to locate documents related to the shows that were prepared and sent to Brazil to better identify the interference of sectors of the US government in the organization of these exhibitions. The hypothesis is that they were used as instruments in political-ideological disputes, or, more specifically saying, as tools for the building of the image of the United States as the locus par excellence of international contemporary art and free creation. As a result of the research, one hopes to understand how the cultural and artistic field and the spaces of art and culture have come to operate more directly as indispensable reception environments in the political, diplomatic and commercial activities. (AU)

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