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Galeria Fortes Vilaca


Alexandre Gabriel is the artistic director of the gallery from the beginning (2001), and is in charge of the management of both spaces of the gallery, one in Rua Fradique Coutinho 1500 (the one the we visited) and another in Rua James Holland 71.


The gallery was opened in 2001 by two women well know in the Brazilian art system. It was the first mover in this neighbourhood of Sao Paulo, leading to the eventual movement of other galleries into the area.

As a contemporary art gallery, Fortes Vilaca has a double purpose: on one side they support and promote Brazilian artists within the international scene, and on the other side, they bring international artists to Brazil. The gallery’s artist portfolio includes: Adriana Varejão, Alejandra Icaza, Beatriz Milhazes,  Carlos Bevilacqua, Cerith Wyn Evans, Damián Ortega, Efrain Almeida, Erika Verzutti, Ernesto Neto, Franz Ackermann, Gerben Mulder, Gil Heitor Cortesão, Gusmão + Paiva, Hiroshi Sugito, Iran do Espírito Santo, Janaina Tschäpe, José Damasceno, Julião Sarmento, Julie Roberts, Leda Catunda, Los Carpinteros, Luiz Zerbini, Marina Rheingantz, Mauro Piva, Mauro Restiffe, Nobuyoshi Araki, Nuno Ramos, osgemeos, Paulo Nenflidio, Rivane, Neuenschwander, Rodrigo Matheus, Sara Ramo, Sergej Jensen, Tiago Carneiro da Cunha, Valeska Soares and Vik Muniz. They organize around 15 exhibitions per years, divided among the two spaces that the gallery owns.

There are two owners and one artistic director, but they also sometimes collaborate with external curators. They are developing a strong network of relations with other galleries, in San Paolo, but also in other cities. Sometimes they also organize exhibitions with artists represented by these other galleries, and viceversa.

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During the period that we visited the gallery, they were exhibiting a group show with the title: “nude”. We met the artistic director Alexandre Gabriel and we had a discussion with him. He explained the exhibition, which he had curated, and also told us something about the gallery’s activities in general.

Mr. Gabriel explained that the exhibition is a group show that the gallery organizes once a year, in order to create the opportunity to invite new artists. It was done in cooperation with another gallery and includes both contemporary and modern art.

Fortes Vilaca is one of the most important galleries in San Paolo and is well known at an international level. The gallery participates in international art fairs in the US and Europe, and is developing partnerships with several galleries abroad.

For Fortes Vilaca, the best way to discover new talents is to follow the exhibitions of FAABI (most important art school), as many talented artists pass through art schools. The gallery constantly monitors artistic activities around the country in order to find new artists.

by Giovanni Saladino

Galeria Fortes Vilaca website

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