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Aurelia de Souza Exhibition - "From what I see..."

Opening on June 9, at 6:30 pm, at the Quinta de Santiago Museum

The Quinta de Santiago Museum, in Leça da Palmeira, will host the exhibition “Aurélia de Souza. From what I see…”, one of the events that is part of the evocative program of the 1st centenary of the artist’s death, which involves seven partner entities, and which will culminate with the launch of the long-awaited Raisonné Catalog next year 2023.

The municipalities of Matosinhos, Porto, the Soares dos Reis National Museum, the University of Porto, the Catholic University, the Institute of Art History of the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences of the Nova University of Lisbon, joined forces and prepared a vast program to celebrate one of the most outstanding women in the artistic life of the country and especially of the North, at the turn of the 19th century to the 20th century.

At the Quinta de Santiago Museum, 21 works by Aurélia de Souza will be on display until the 4th of September, from both private and public collections, covering the various themes developed during her activity.

Curated by Cláudia Almeida, coordinator of the Soares dos Reis National Museum, and Filipa Lowndes Vicente, researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lisbon, the exhibition is developed in four nuclei, four rooms of a house that is now transformed into a museum:

- Face to face, dedicated to portraiture, a genre that the artist cultivated throughout her career;

- House Diaries, exploring the interiors and exteriors of the House – Quinta da China – a place of intimacy and markedly feminine;

- Painting near and far from Home, where painted plans are combined, not only of pure landscapes, but also of inhabited landscapes, everyday scenes, rural or urban;

- On the table, the still lifes that Aurelia astutely valued and knew how to execute, well adapted to the conditions of female life, without threatening the expectations of femininity, as a source of professional income.

The participation of the Municipality of Matosinhos in these celebrations includes not only the exhibition that opens tomorrow, but also educational programs, special guided tours, organization of the International Congress “Women Artists of 1900” and collaboration in the Raisonné Catalogue.

It should be remembered that, born in the city of Valparaíso (Chile), where she was born on June 13, 1866, Maria Aurélia Martins de Souza settled in Porto at the age of three. Author of one of the reference works of Portuguese art – "Autorretrato" (1900), from the collection of the Soares dos Reis National Museum, she began her artistic apprenticeship with private lessons in drawing and painting by Caetano Moreira da Costa Lima. At just 27 years old, she entered the Porto Academy of Fine Arts (1893/1898). In 1899 she left for Paris where she studied for three years, then traveled to various countries such as Belgium, Germany, Italy and Spain.

She returned to Porto, where she developed a reserved career, a little removed from the artistic milieu, but regularly participating in group exhibitions. She died in Porto on May 26, 1922, a few days short of her 56th birthday.

Aurelia was a 'visual', and in addition to painted, drawn or illustrated records, she also used photography to express herself; she used the latest technology at her disposal to, together with her extraordinary powers of observation, enrich her knowledge of the world around her and create her works of art. The approach to this exhibition also uses the latest technologies to provide the visitor with a more enriching experience of the life and work of this artist who decisively marks the history of art in Portugal, despite being forgotten for many years.


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