Francisco Brennand's Ceramic Workshop – Recife, Brazil - Atlas Obscura

Francisco Brennand's Ceramic Workshop

The massive gardens and office of a Brazilian sculptor. 


Calling Francisco Brennand’s workshop an office is a grave misnomer. Filled with hundreds of his statues, paintings and ceramics, his workshop complex is a vast labor of love and artistic imagining of the world, which harkens lovingly back to a childhood spent in Recife.

Born into a wealthy family in the northern Brazilian city in 1927, Brennand began his love of pottery and art at a young age. While he was just a boy, he was already working in the family pottery studio in Recife, that his father had founded in 1917. As his skill grew, he jetted off to Europe for inspiration, studying the works of Gaudi and Picasso while travelling throughout Spain and Italy.

When he returned to Recife in 1971, his family studio was in ruin and he set his sights on restoring the workshop that had nurtured his young love of ceramics and art. Combining his talents with landscape designer and architect Roberto Brule Marx, Brennand began developing an immense art compound, complete with extensive gardens, temples and reflecting pools.

The area comprising the workshop features massive galleries holding Brennand’s works and most famously feature a lush outdoor promenade. Many of the structures in the sculpture garden are influenced by Brennand’s work with ceramics and the walls of his promenade are lined with statues he composed as well.

The entire complex is a reimagining of his family’s studio, and the great detail and beauty reflect the inspiration he drew from his formative years spent sculpting under the guidance of his father. Along with Francisco Brennand’s Ceramic Workshop, his works can be found in another museum located in Recife as well. The museums and gardens are open to the public throughout the week.

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September 7, 2011

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