Baroque in Brazil

The baroque in Brazil was introduced at the beginning of the seventeenth century by Catholic missionaries, especially Jesuits, who brought the new style as an instrument of Christian indoctrination. The epic poem Prosopopeia (1601), by Bento Teixeira, is one of its initial milestones. The baroque reached its apogee in literature with the poet Gregório de Matos and the holy orator Father António Vieira. The greatest artists of the era were Aleijadinho in sculpture and Master Ataíde in painting. Baroque architecture flourished remarkably in the Northeast; important examples also exist in the center of the country, in Minas Gerais, Goiás, and Rio de Janeiro. In music, unlike the other arts, few documents survive, and only from the late baroque. With the development of neoclassicism starting in the first decades of the eighteenth century, the Baroque tradition, which had a history of massive strength in Brazil and was considered the national style of excellence, gradually fell into disuse, but traces of it were found in various forms of art until the early years of the twentieth century.

Altar-mor da Basílica de Nossa Senhora do Carmo, Recife, Pernambuco, Brasil
Altar of the Basilica of Our Lady of Carmel in Recife, one of the masterpieces of the Brazilian Baroque

The Baroque (UK: , US: ) is a highly ornate and often extravagant style of architecture, music, painting, sculpture and other arts that flourished in Europe from the early 17th until the mid-18th century. It followed the Renaissance style and preceded the Rococo (in the past often referred to as "late Baroque") and Neoclassical styles. It was encouraged by the Catholic Church as a means to counter the simplicity and austerity of Protestant architecture, art and music, though Lutheran Baroque art developed in parts of Europe as well. The Baroque style used contrast, movement, exuberant detail, deep colour, grandeur and surprise to achieve a sense of awe. The style began at the start of the 17th century in Rome, then spread rapidly to France, northern Italy, Spain and Portugal, then to Austria and southern Germany. By the 1730s, it had evolved into an even more flamboyant style, called rocaille or Rococo, which appeared in France and central Europe until the mid to late 18th century.

Culture of Brazil

The culture of Brazil is primarily Western, but presents a very diverse nature showing that an ethnic and cultural mixing occurred in the colonial period involving mostly Indigenous peoples of the coastal and most accessible riverine areas, Portuguese people and African people. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, together with further waves of Portuguese colonization, Italians, Spaniards, Germans, Austrians, Levantine Arabs (Syrians and Lebanese), Armenian, Japanese, Chinese, Poles, Helvetians,

Ukrainians and Russians

settled in Brazil, playing an important role in its culture as it started to shape a multicultural and multiethnic society.

As consequence of three centuries of colonization by the Portuguese empire, the core of Brazilian culture is derived from the culture of Portugal. The numerous Portuguese inheritances include the language, cuisine items such as rice and beans and feijoada, the predominant religion and the colonial architectural styles. These aspects, however, were influenced by African and Indigenous American traditions, as well as those from other Western European countries. Some aspects of Brazilian culture are contributions of Italian, Spaniard, German, Japanese and other European immigrants. Amerindian people and Africans played a large role in the formation of Brazilian language, cuisine, music, dance and religion.This diverse cultural background has helped boast many celebrations and festivals that have become known around the world, such as the Brazilian Carnival and the Bumba Meu Boi. The colourful culture creates an environment that makes Brazil a popular destination for many tourists each year, around over 1 million.

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