By Chesney Hearst, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – On Tuesday May 12th, the owner of Daros Latinamerica, Ruth Schmidheiny, announced that the Casa Daros cultural space, located in the Rio de Janeiro neighborhood of Botafogo, would end its current activities in December of this year.
Schmidheiny reportedly stated in a letter addressed to artists; “Daros Latinamerica will explore new horizons,” adding, “We will focus our public activities on the international front, and Casa Daros in Rio de Janeiro will be dedicated to new purposes.”
Casa Daros opened on March 23, 2013 as a site in Rio in which to display the Zurich, Switzerland-based Daros Latinamerica Collection, a collection of contemporary art pieces acquired from various Latin American countries.
With the space’s inauguration following the opening of the Museu de Arte do Rio (MAR) in the city’s Port Zone, Casa Daros was thought by many to be part of a resurgence of cultural centers and activities in Rio.
Casa Daros’ opening was a long time coming, as it followed almost six years of renovations to the site, a two-story mansion located in the neighborhood of Botafogo. O Globo reported that, according to sources close to the organization, the ongoing cost of maintaining the structure was a factor in the decision to terminate activities.
During its little over two-year run, the center hosted exhibitions including “Cantos Cuentos Colombianos,” which featured contemporary works from ten Colombian artists and “Le Parc Lumière – Obras cinéticas de Julio Le Parc” (“Le Parc Lumiere – The kinetic works of Julio Le Parc”), an installation featuring the kinetic art of Argentinian artist Julio Le Parc.
The space has also served as home to Mira!, a cafe created by the owners of the popular Botafogo restaurants Miam Miam and Oui Oui.
The current exhibition showing in Casa Daros is “Made in Brasil.” Featuring works by sixty Brazilian artists, the exhibition will remain open through August 9th. The exhibition “Ficción y fantasiá-Arte de Cuba” (Fiction and Fantasy-Art of Cuba) will follow. Featuring 140 works by fifteen Cuban artists, it will be the final exhibition in the space, closing on December 13th.