This volume is a reprint in book form of the out-of-print number of the magazine 2G devoted to Lina Bo Bardi and is the only publication currently on the market that presents all the built work of the genial Brazilian architect of Italian origin.
Lina Bo Bardi was born in Rome in 1914 and graduated from the Architecture Faculty of Rome University in 1940. After working for Gio Ponti and editing the magazine Domus, she left postwar Italy in 1946 and emigrated to Brazil -the nationality of which she would later adopt- her entire professional career being undertaken in that country. With its radical, modern approach, all her work is redolent with the ambition to get closer to popular lifestyles and local traditions by doing away with the distance between 'elite' and 'popular' culture. Her designs have a conceptual, material and ethical expressiveness that have brought her international renown, and it is in her built work, all of which is included in this volume, where this way of understanding architecture is especially apparent.
Through the 19 works created by Lina Bo Bardi, among which, due to their popularity, it is probably inevitable to cite the House of Glass (the Bardis' home), the MASP (São Paulo Art Museum) and the SESC Pompéia Factory, this books provides the keys to understanding her architectural legacy. Using the texts of each project Olivia de Oliveira, the guest editor, composes a multifaceted discourse about the work of Lina Bo Bardi that enables us to contextualize and understand it in all its architectonic, cultural, political and social complexity.
Likewise, in the introduction Oliveira casts a critical and incisive eye over the different, relatively recent, interventions that have been made on a number of Bo Bardi's buildings. The book closes with the section nexus, which includes three texts written by Bo Bardi herself, images of some of her industrial designs and, lastly, an interview the author did with Bo Bardi in 1991. As is usual in the magazine 2G, all the buildings were revisited and especially photographed for this publication, this time by Nelson Kon.
Notwithstanding the indubitable personality of Bo Bardi's oeuvre and of the major influence it has had on later architectural practice, this volume of 2G is still the only available bibliographical reference in which to find a compilation of all the information about her built work.