Burle Marx, who called himself “the poet of his own life” and one of the most influential landscape architects of the twentieth century, is on show at The Jewish Museum, NY.
Organized by the Jewish Museum in New York, and in collaboration with the Sítio Roberto Burle Marx in Rio de Janeiro, “Burle Marx: Brazilian Modernist” is an exhibition on one of the most influential landscape architects of the twentieth century, best known for his iconic seaside pavements on Rio de Janeiro’s Copacabana Beach, and for his abstract, geometric garden designs.
Burle Marx was a painter and sculptor, a designer of textiles, jewelry, theater sets, and costumes, a ceramicist and stained-glass artist. He was an avid art collector, a talented baritone, a consummate cook, and a visionary self-taught botanist and ecologist. For him, all these endeavors were equally important, facets of one another.
The artist embraced modernism in the early 1930s, as the movement was taking hold in Brazil. He revolutionized garden design by using abstraction and grand colorful sweeps of local vegetation, abolishing symmetry and rejecting imported flora and European models. The son of a German Jewish father and a Brazilian Catholic mother, he viewed the role of the landscape architect in ideal terms: to mitigate the loss of the primeval garden and repair the rift between humanity and nature.