JOAQUIM TENREIRO (1906 – 1992)
Sofa model “Manta”
Manufactured by Tenreiro Moveis e Decoraçoes
Peroba wood, upholstery
177,8 cm x 73 cm x 64,8h cm
70 in x 28,75 in x 25,3h in
Soraia Cals, Tenreiro, Rio de Janeiro, 2000, p. 105
Joaquim Tenreiro (1906-1992) was among leading furniture designers and visual artists in modernist Brazilian furniture making in the mid-20th century.
A forerunner in the use of rediscovered raw materials as well as the creator of a new formal language in 20th century Brazilian furniture design, he drew on the lessons of past furniture making as a vital source, not only in the mastery of technical and constructive solutions, but also in the aesthetic experience, craftsmanship, and the cultural meaning of his production. His exquisitely crafted pieces evoke a refined coexistence of traditional values and modern aesthetics, strongly bound to the Brazilian cultural milieu.
Born in Portugal to a family with a great tradition in furniture making, he moved to Brazil at the age of 22 and embraced a career as a designer by working at various furniture manufacturers such as Leandro Martins, Francisco Gomes and Laubisch & Hirth.
Tenreiro proposed a contemporary language and advocated the idea that Brazilian furniture should be “formally light…A lightness which has nothing to do with weight itself, but with graciousness, and the functionality of spaces.