R & Company is thrilled announce Against The Grain: Jose Zanine Caldas (1919 – 2001), a major retrospective of the pioneering Brazilian modern designer and architect Jose Zanine, opening at the gallery’s 64 White Street location on November 6th. Celebrating Zanine’s prolific career, the exhibition coincides with the one hundred year anniversary of his birthdate in 1919 and is accompanied by the release of the first extensive bilingual Portuguese-English publication José Zanine Caldas published by Editora Olhares and R & Company with a preface by Zesty Meyers and essays by preeminent Brazilian scholars Amanda Beatriz Palma de Carvalho, Lauro Cavalcanti and Maria Cecília Loschiavo dos Santos.
Internationally recognized as one of the most innovative leaders of the Brazilian modern design movement, Zanine left an impressive legacy and global influence. Self-taught, Zanine stood apart from his contemporaries for his freedom in material exploration and his ability to harmoniously balance nature and craft in his forward thinking practice. His multifaceted career ranged from sculpture and furniture to landscape and architectural design for both low income and elite housing throughout Brazil. The exhibition surveys over forty years of his diverse practice by presenting both iconic and never-before seen designs alongside archival drawings, photography and videos that reveal the story behind his unique thought process.
Offering a glimpse into his extraordinary life, the retrospective at R & Company highlights a collection of works made from the 1940s to the 1980s that demonstrate Zanine’s expansive practice. The early designs reveal Zanine’s fascination with craft, structure and dedication to local traditions. His later designs demonstrate an evolution towards a more expressive interest in material and a strong devotion to environmental protection. Zanine often worked with local and recycled Brazilian woods, and as his designs developed over the years his approach became increasingly more raw and energetic. The retrospective celebrates all facets of his life and the great achievements he accomplished through passion, dedication and a devotion to push forward the limits of modern design.
“Zanine’s legacy has taught me that freedom of thought can surpass many obstacles, that what seems basic may actually be very sophisticated, and that one should be brave to work with what is available,” states Zesty Meyers. “The fruits of his labor in design and architecture are stunning as much as they are inspiring, This is what Zanine should be recognized for today, and why his work will matter tomorrow.”
Against The Grain: Jose Zanine Caldas (1919 – 2001) will be on view from November 6 through December 21 on the lower level of R & Company’s 64 White Street location and will coincide with the exhibition LOVE by Pierre Yovanovitch.