Didem Doğan

Paulista Avenue: Japan House, Casa das Rosas, SESC, Itaú Cultural

A couple of public culture and art spaces on Paulista Avenue. We start by the Japan Houses located on Paulista 52, an art space to promote the Japanese culture (the second biggest Japanese community outside Japan lives in São Paulo). The exterior front is covered with a wooden platform, the building just behind it is covered with a graffiti of Niemeyer’s face. During our visit the exhibition of ‘Aromas and Tastes’ includes Japanese plastic artist Maki Ueda’s work where she hangs little glass tubes inside of which four different sakura smells (cherry blossom trees) are kept. As you walk along the tubes you differentiate these four different smells.As we cross the avenue right across the Japanese House is located Casa das Rosas, the Flower House was the former residence of the architect Ramos de Acevedo in classical French style. Today it is a public space in order to honour the poet Harold de Campos (there’s an exhibition about the poet at the entrance hall). The top floor can be visited to see the furniture from that time (early twentieth century), the garden is filled with roses, a cafeteria. The house is mainly used for literary gatherings, book promotions and seminars.We then walk again along the Paulista and about a hundred meters away we find the SESC building. SESC is a private institution promoting the culture and social events with its twenty four spaces in the state of Sao Paulo. This one on the Paulista avenue has a roof top terrace where you can have a view of the metropole’s silhouette full of skyscrapers.Right after SESC is the Itaú Cultural Center. There’s an exhibition named ‘Occupation’, it is about the Brazilian architecture Paulo Mendes da Rocha; the Pritzker prize winner architect designed many buildings such as SESC 24 May, Sao Paulo Athletics Club, Brazilian Sculpture Museum, Pinocateca. Further on the Paulista Avenue we arrive at the MASP museum and Conjunto Nacional.