Travel, Arts, Design, Fashion, Food

BLOG: The View From Brazil

Thursday 10 April 2014

The truth is, while Paulistas may lord their superior sophistication over their provincial sibling Rio de Janeiro, Cariocas just laugh all the way to the beach.

After a whirlwind of serious glamour, highbrow culture and non-stop air kissing in Brazil’s style capital, the fashion crowd went costal for a week of dressing up in the sun.

While it's never going to be Paris or Milan (as Sao Paulo may strive to be), when it comes to note-worthy events, Rio knows how to play to its strong points – Marking the 25th anniversary of Rio Fashion Week, this year’s theme for the show celebrates Rio as a “Tropical Resort, Global Heritage and Cultural Landscape” (it sounds marginally better in Portuguese). The gist of it? Rio inspires.

Tuesday saw Brazilian cult designer Oskar Metsavaht, one of the star acts of the week, launch his 2014/2105 Osklen Praia beach range during a star-studded bash in an art-deco mansion in Rio's Gloria neighbourhood.

Metsavaht designed the collection in collaboration with Italian socialite Bianca Brandolini and Alexia Niedzielski, co-founder of eco-conscious fashion publication Ever Manifesto and the talent behind H&M’s latest environmentally-friendly collection set to launch in the UK on 10 April 2014.

These two quasi-Brazilian muses embody Osklen’s brand ethos and DNA – trailblazing a new global movement towards ‘Brazilian Soul’ (think a 21st century version of the American Dream, yet inspired by a laid-back passion for life rather than capitalist financial gain).

Among the parade of big name Brazilian designers on the catwalk, Thursday sees the unveiling of the World Cup 2014 volunteers’ uniforms, designed by Adidas, showcased by presenter Fernanda Lima and soon to be modeled by 14,000 volunteers.

For while the impending World Cup may have sparked an unprecedented social clamor for change in Brazil, this week has also seen the brighter side of the coin. Kicking off last Sunday at the Maracanã and running for 10 days, the Street Children’s World Cup has seen 230 kids from 19 different countries take part in a tournament as part of a global campaign for street children to receive the protection and opportunities they deserve.

Roll on the era of Brazilian Soul…

Words by Lauren Holmes

Travel, Arts, Design, Fashion, Food

BLOG: The View From Brazil

Thursday 3 April 2014

If Rio de Janeiro is renowned for its raucous five days of non stop hedonism during Carnival, this year, São Paulo is giving it a run for its money.

This week sees the city overrun by a back-to-back series of some of the continent’s most dynamic cultural events. Let’s just say, it’s a good thing Brazilians have stamina.

When São Paulo is taken over by Brazilians super models, it can mean but one thing. SPFW kicked off on Monday with a show from high-luxe Brazilian brand Animale, São Paulo fashion week runs until Friday 4 April and includes highlights such as Gisele walking for Colcci, and Brazilian eco-brand Osklen’s collaboration with contemporary alfresco art gallery Inhotim.

This week also sees the opening of the 10th edition of SP-Arte – Brazil’s international art fair, which has risen on the wave of Brazil’s recent economic boom to one of the world’s most important art events in the world, attracting art power-houses like Gagosian and White Cube Gallery. The three day event takes place across the city’s picturesque Ibirapuera park – with 136 Brazilian and international galleries and a carousel of events, lectures, book launches and magazine parties from the likes of Bazaar and design magazine Bamboo. 

In the world of cinema, the international documentary festival ‘It’s All True’ is screening across São Paulo. Running until the 13 April, this year’s films explore the 50 years since Brazil’s military dictatorship, and the theme of freedom of speech.

Come Friday, Pivó, a non- profit experimental art and cultural centre located in the iconic Niemeyer designed Copan building in downtown São Paulo, launch their latest exhibition on Casa Triangulo. The 25 year retrospective explores the contemporary galleries ground breaking work on opening 25 years ago and its crucial role in consolidating the careers of some of Brazil’s most important artists. Expect a hip alternative crowd and signature cocktails from Brazil’s hippest new cachaça brand, Yaguara. And if you thought the weekend was for sleeping, think again.

In its 3rd edition rock-fest Lollapolooza dominates the weekend with performances from Muse, Arcade Fire, Flume, rising star Lorde and rock veterans New Order.

Keep in mind though, that the hottest ticket in town is amFar, the international gala ball co-chaired by the likes of Sharon Stone and Kate Moss, to raise money for aids. Held in the magnificent private home of Dinho Diniz for a fashion week finale, this year sees perfomances from the likes of Mary J Blige and samba legend Mart’Nalia and more beautiful people that you can shake a stick at.

Words by Lauren Holmes