Living - - English Text -

This is no job for sen­ti­men­tal saps. An­dré and Vi­vian scour SÜo Pau­lo’s mar­ke­ts for ra­re finds to de­co­ra­te their li­ving room. And then put a pri­ce tag on eve­ry la­st pie­ce. The cou­ple li­ves in their sho­w­room. Not bad when it’s a 1940s vil­la, a ma­ster­pie­ce of ra­tio­na­li­sm wi­th a tro­pi­cal gar­den. The on­ly room clo­sed to cu­sto­mers is the be­droom. For their pri­va­cy has no pri­ce

«All the fur­ni­tu­re is for sa­le, ex­cept for one pie­ce», said Vi­vian, who wi­th her com­pa­nion, An­drè, li­ves in the gal­le­ry that dou­bles as their ho­me. «The de­cor con­ti­nual­ly chan­ges, the pie­ces co­me and go». The young, thir­ty­so­me­thing cou­ple flings open the doors, wel­co­ming col­lec­tors in­to this unu­sual ho­me-gal­le­ry in São Pau­lo’s Jar­dim Amé­ri­ca nei­gh­bou­rhood, well kno­wn for its ex­clu­si­ve bou­ti­ques and top-end ho­tels. An­drè is a gra­phic ar­ti­st who has a thing for re­sto­ra­tion; Vi­vian is a jour­na­li­st who ado­res art and on­ce wor­ked for the Fun­dação Bie­nal de São Pau­lo, the con­tem­po­ra­ry art in­sti­tu­tion. Bo­th are se­rial col­lec­tors, al­ways on the hunt for trea­su­res in the ci­ty. «But on­ly Vi­vian can find pe­riod pie­ces in gar­ba­ge bins», An­drè ad­mit­ted. The li­ving room may fea­tu­re a Li­na Bo Bar­di arm­chair to­day and a Hans We­gner chair or a Giot­to Stop­pi­no ta­ble to­mor­row. De­si­gn pie­ces mo­ve in and out for an ever-chan­ging li­ving room. For An­drè and Vi­vian, the ty­pi­cal Bra­zi­lian or no­stal­gic lon­ging, ne­ver sur­fa­ces. They don’t let them­sel­ves get at­ta­ched to even a lamp­sha­de. «We al­ways ha­ve new fur­ni­shings. Mi­xing and mat­ching them is qui­te the chal­len­ge. This is al­so an ex­cel­lent way to learn to li­ve wi­th few things sin­ce in rea­li­ty we own prac­ti­cal­ly no­thing». They’ve main­tai­ned the vil­la as it on­ce was – whi­te, un­clut­te­red and wi­th re­spect for the ori­gi­nal ar­chi­tec­tu­re. Vic­tor Bre­che­ret de­si­gned the ho­me in 1939. Among his ma­ny works, the sculp­tor crea­ted a São Pau­lo land­mark, the Ban­dei­ras Mo­nu­ment in ho­nour of the Por­tu­gue­se and Bra­zi­lian co­lo­nial ex­plo­rers. «He had a small work­shop in the back», Vi­vian said. «The two ovens that he built are still the­re». He had re­tur­ned to Bra­zil af­ter a long pe­riod in Fran­ce du­ring whi­ch he was hea­vi­ly in­fluen­ced by mo­der­ni­st ma­sters su­ch as Le Cor­bu­sier and Lud­wig Mies van der Ro­he. «But he wa­sn’t an ar­chi­tect as was the ca­se wi­th Ri­no Le­vi, ‘the ra­tio­na­li­st of the tro­pics’, who in the ’60s re­mo­del­led the ho­me at the re­que­st of Bre­che­ret’s wi­dow, who li­ved he­re un­til 2015». A pio­neer of the Bra­zi­lian mo­der­ni­st mo­ve­ment, Le­vi chan­ged the lay­out of the rooms, ad­ded sli­ding doors and win­do­ws and de­si­gned the mo­va­ble par­ti­tion whi­ch is still in the cen­tre of the li­ving room. «It’s not for sa­le», Vi­vian em­pha­si­zed.


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