“I am not attracted to straight angles or to the straight line, hard and inflexible, created by man. I am attracted to free-flowing, sensual curves. The curves that I find in the mountains of my country, in the sinuousness of its rivers, in the waves of the ocean, and on the body of the beloved woman. Curves make up the entire Universe, the curved Universe of Einstein. ” (Oscar Niemeyer)
I love this quote, and it sums up the architecture of the capital of Brasilia. Brasília was planned and developed by architects Lúcio Costa and Oscar Niemeyer in 1956 in order to move the capital from Rio de Janeiro to a more central location. This move was completed in 1960. The centers of all three branches of the federal government of Brazil are in Brasília, including the Congress, President, and Supreme Court. The city also hosts 124 foreign embassies. Considered one of the greatest works of the 20th century, the city of Brasilia was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 1987. It is a true symbol of modernism.
The Cathedral of Brasília
“It was designed by Oscar Niemeyer, and was completed and dedicated on May 31, 1970. The cathedral is a hyperboloid structure constructed from 16 concrete columns, weighing 90 tons each.”
The capital of Brasilia was designed on a “pilot plan” where the layout of the city was similar to a plane or dragonfly. This plan separates the city into quadrants and the divides the city into sectors with their respective characteristics and end uses. With large open air spaces planted between the artworks of Oscar Niemeyer, It was a truly an innovative plan.
Initially, when Ludmilla told me we were going to Brasilia, the seat of government, I thought…”BORING”, but I was sooo wrong!! I was so struck by the amazing architecture. I felt as though I had gone back in time to the 1960’s, the time when this city was realized. Amazingly, it still works today! It was one of the most beautiful and interesting cities in regards to modern architecture that I have ever experienced. The main sites are easily walkable and at night the city is even more amazing. This is a must see on any trip to Brazil.
The Juscelino Kubitschek Bridge, also known as the President JK Bridge is a steel and concrete bridge that crosses Lake Paranoá in Brasília.
Brasilia at night!
Beijos e Tchau!