WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Several pieces of priceless artwork were destroyed when rioters invaded Brazil’s three government buildings.
- Among the destroyed artworks are the statue called “Justice,” the painting “Mulattoes,” a Louis XIV clock, and a historic table.
- The presidential palace, the Supreme Court, and Congress are also considered treasures of modern architecture.
The supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro stormed their capital city’s government buildings and destroyed everything they could, including priceless artwork.
The rioters ransacked the Supreme Court, Congress, and the presidential palace known as the Planalto, which are all considered treasures of modern architecture designed by Oscar Niemeyer. Brazilians credit the architecture for its classification as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1987.
The mob smashed in most of the windows and damaged several of the rare furnishings and artworks.
The Institute of National Artistic Historical Heritage (Iphan) “deeply deplored the damage caused.”
Among the priceless masterpieces destroyed were:
A clock made by Louis XIV’s clock-maker
Balthazar Martinot, clock-maker to France’s King Louis XIV, made an exquisite clock that was eventually gifted from the Sun King to the Portuguese crown and brought by King Joao VI to Brazil in 1808, when he fled Lisbon as Napoleonic troops approached.
Martinot made only two clocks of this type. The other one, half in size, is displayed at the Chateau de Versailles.
The clock in Brasilia was knocked to the ground on the third floor of the presidential palace. It had a gaping hole in place of the dial and extensive damage to its gold and brown casing.
Rogerio Carvalho, who is responsible for the heritage of the presidential palaces, remarked that the restoration will be “very difficult.”
A historic table
Former Brazilian president Juscelino Kubitschek was the visionary behind Brasilia’s construction in the middle of the savannah, as well as its inauguration in 1960.
His historic work table, designed by Oscar Niemeyer and his only daughter Anna Maria, was knocked over by rioters who used it as a barricade against police.
A statue called “Justice”
Brazilian Alfredo Ceschiatti sculpted a monumental granite statue called “Justice,” in 1961. It was situated on The Square of the Three Powers, in front of the Supreme Court and opposite the presidential palace.
The statue, which is over three meters (10 feet), shows a blindfolded woman sitting with a sword on her lap.
Rioters spray-painted the statue on Sunday with the words “Perdeu, mane,” (“You lost, poor fool”), on her chest.
Those were reportedly the words of Supreme Court Justice Luis Roberto Barroso to a Bolsonaro supporter who questioned the reliability of electronic ballot boxes used in November’s elections.
A Brazilian modernist masterpiece
A master of Brazilian modernism, Di Cavalcanti, completed the painting “Mulattoes” in 1962.
The masterpiece, which shows four women, was exhibited in the Noble Hall on the third floor of the Presidential Palace. Rioters stabbed the canvas seven times, seriously damaging it.
The president’s office estimated its value at “eight million reais (about $1.5 million), but this kind of work is usually sold for five times more at auction.”
Source: Yahoo! News