Lina’s World

with Manasi Punde & Kay Yang

Tasked with analyzing Lina Bo Bardi’s Casa de Vidro through the mediums of drawing and animation, we appropriated the architect’s famous method of collage to reposition her legacy in the context of modern architectural history.

The project began with a sectional examination of the building and its transition from a floating volume on pilotis to a grounded form with an accessible courtyard. The dichotomy of Bo Bardi’s house relates to the contrast of served and servant spaces, the privileging of a removed view of the tropical surrounds, and the fact of an extremely sloped ground plane. The following drawings present the initial explorations of the group project.

Working individually, I chose to create visualizations of the Casa de Vidro in an ode to Bo Bardi’s whimsical representational style. These collages allude to the architect’s imaginative capacity and attitude towards the relationship between landscape and architecture. The following drawings position the glass house as a modernist space craft of sorts, with the light touch of its pilotis suggesting its potential takeoff from a Brazil that was becoming increasingly hostile to Lina’s politics.

The group project culiminated in an animated sequence that borrows from the style of Street Fighter, a popular 1987 video game, in order to question Lina’s legacy in a male-dominated history of modern architecture. Alluding to the vandalism of Eileen Gray’s E-1027 by Le Corbusier, the animation presents the Casa de Vidro under threat by a slew of male modernists, and finally blown up by the 1964 Brazilian military coup.

The video was imagined as a tongue-in-cheek take on the biases within architectural historiography. Keeping in mind the systematic exclusion of women from the history of architecture, the group project concluded with a charred page from A Concise History of Modern Architecture, depicting an anonymous Casa de Vidro in ruins.