A to Z

português | english

Arco logo


In 1973, the course “Introduction to Sculpture” is part of the so-called Art Department, as are other introductions (Drawing, Painting, Silkscreen Printing). Graça Costa Cabral, Artur Rosa and Waldemar d’Orey teach the subject. At the same time, “3 Dimensions”, taught by Graça Costa Cabral, belongs in the “Basic Training Course”, which is Ar.Co’s more comprehensive and integrated training program in Design. The year of  1979 will be an important turning point for Sculpture (headed by Graça Costa Cabral in the context of the training/learning programs): João Cutileiro holds at Ar.Co an intensive course of sculpture in stone, with  modern technologies and high speed abrasive media, which will promote the creation at the school of a Stone Workshop/Studio (1979/82, directed by Graça Costa Cabral). The actions developed by Ar.Co with Cutileiro and António Pedroso’s Utilpedra between 1978 and 1982 include the organization of group shows and sculpture traineeships in various parts of the country, as well as the groundbreaking “International Stone Sculpture Symposium – Évora 81” (followed, in 1982, by the travelling exhibition “Nova Escultura em Pedra - uma experiência / New Sculpture in Stone – an experiment” with venues at Almancil, Lisbon, Batalha, Oporto, Vila Real and Évora). A second Symposium, the “International Stone Sculpture Symposium – Oporto 85”,  takes place, as its name says, in Oporto in 1985. In the 1988/89 information sheet, Sculpture integrates the Training/Learning program and the Stone Sculpture and Design Centre is set up at the Quinta de S. Miguel em Almada, where the Japanese guest artist Koji Enokura gives a workshop in 1989 and leaves a concrete piece built in the premises (with support from Secil). The staff from that period includes Graça Costa Cabral (Head of department), Maria Felizol, Sérgio Taborda, Jean Campiche and Francisco Rocha, who will soon be joined by Ângela Ferreira and Gilberto Reis. In 1991/92 the department is directed by Ângela ferreira and is located both at Rua de Santiago 18 in Lisbon (for wood and metal) and at the Quinta de S. Miguel. In the training program, concerns about the relevance and efficacy of artistic expression emphasize questions of content over those of form and technique. Besides the names mentioned, there are collaborations by António Campos Rosado, Rui Sanches and Rui Chafes. In 1994/95 the staff will include Fernanda Fragateiro and Luísa Cunha. In the following year Gilberto Reis becomes Head of department and the training orientation becomes more concrete, exploring the plastic and expressive possibilities of the materials and reclaiming the dimension of  installation and the new technologies as part of Sculpture making. From 1999/2000 to 2004/20005 the department is run by Rui Sanches and has teaching collaborations by Sérgio Taborda, Joana Vasconcelos, Francisco Tropa and Leonor Antunes. Due to the chronic low number of students in this area students at different training levels become part of a single work group. The debate about how to integrate technologies in sculpture training continues and it is decided that there should be one person fully dedicated to help with the technical aspects of the students’ projects (Luís Romano). The presence of a studio technician during regular hours is formalized (Teodomiro Carvalho and Luís Filipe Correia) and a space is created for the more commonly used technologies. Group projects and group exhibitions outside of Ar.Co’s installations also become a central feature of the training process. From 2004/2005 to 2007/2008, Francisco Tropa is Head of Sculpture and sets up a very open teaching scheme, based on an ample program of invitations that includes specialized craftsmen/technicians, artists and theoreticians from different areas. Special workshops are organized and the “Conversas no Atelier de Escultura”/”Talks at the Sculpture Studio” cycle is set up, with contributions by Venâncio Neves, João Queiroz, Sancho Silva, André Maranha, Tomás Maia, Nuno Faria, Rui Sanches, André Castro, Sérgio Taborda, António Marques, Ricardo Jacinto, José António Fernandes Dias, Leonor Antunes, Pedro Paiva and João Maria Gusmão, Tomás Viana, António Feijó and Suzanne Themlitz. School exercises are developed in group (and may include, not only the students, but other collaborators as well) and frequently consist in the preparation of exhibitions/presentations to be shown outside the school. Examples of this are  “Exercício - Departamento de Escultura do Ar.Co” (at Galeria Fernando Santos, Oporto and Espaço Bartolomeu de Gusmão, Lisbon, in  2005), the performance/installation “Sim Não” (that begins with the school exercise “Abrigos”, conceived by Francisco Tropa himself, and ends up being presented at the Serralves Museum in Oporto in 2006) and  “Nota de Encomenda” (based on Raymond Roussel’s “New Impressions of Africa” and presented in 2008 at the Assírio & Alvim bookshop gallery, in Lisbon). From 2008/2009 to 2010/2011 Rui Chafes is the new Head of department. He retains the idea of sculptural practice as an expanded field of experience and launches a series of elementary exercises departing from propositions that are not only formal but also poetic and artistic in a wide sense of the terms. Invited artists from different fields - painters, sculptors, poets, musicians, movie directors and theoreticians - guarantee that the students keep contact with creators (Alberto Carneiro, João Miguel Fernandes Jorge, José Pedro Croft, João Queiroz, Francisco Tropa, Fernanda Fragateiro, Pedro Paiva/João Maria Gusmão, Vitor Rua, Pedro Sousa Vieira, Pedro Costa and Sara Antónia Matos). Gustavo Sumpta shares with Chafes the task of orientating and ellaborating the curriculum, Leonor Pêgo ensures the technical support in themed workshops (now and then resorting to other specialized practitioners: Rui Vasquez for the “Casting” workshop in 2011) and there is a constant exchange between the Sculpture department and the Cinema/Movement Image department, directed by Marcelo Costa (Ricardo Guerreiro and Miguel Cardoso’s workshop “Musical Composition” of 2011/2012, for instance, is shared by both departments). Sara Antónia Matos substitutes Rui Chafes in 2011/12 as Head of department and keeps the essential traits of the previous programs by launching exercises that interpret the sculptural tradition  on the basis of practice and certain structural features: weight/lightness, full/empty, volume/surface/line, rigidity/plasticity. The curriculum will integrate a “Theory Course in Sculpture”, allowing students to create their reference map in this specific area. The department invites not only artists but also curators and art theoreticians ((Ricardo Jacinto, Francesca Bertozzi, Carlos Nogueira, Nuno Sousa Vieira, Igor Jesus, Rita Ferreira, Miguel Wandschneider, Liliana Coutinho and Pedro Faro) and some classroom sessions are moved to the spaces where exhibitions take place, in the presence of curators and artists. Classes integrate students enroled in Individual Project and special attention is given to exhibition modes and to the finishing of pieces in space, preparing the students for their first public presentations. The average number of students allows the teachers to follow the students’ work on an individualized basis although group tutorials are also regularly promoted. Gustavo Sumpta keeps seminars and in 2013 Sérgio Reis provides a rigorous technical support for the practical training. Sharing classroom time with other departments, Sculpture will again comprise a significant Drawing component. In 2014 it becomes clear that the basic training course in Sculpture in no longer viable and the department is formally extinct. Sculpture will become a material discipline/expressive practice among others at the level of the Advanced Course in Visual Arts and Individual Projects.

  • Large escultura in c. artur rosa

    "Introduction to Sculpture" with Artur Rosa, Ar.Co, 1973.

  • Large inicia  o a escultura 1973 74 graca costacabral 02

    "Introduction to Sculpture" with Graça Costa Cabral. 1973/74.

  • Large exerc esc 2008 09 img 9509xxxx

    Sculpture Exercise with Rui Chafes and Gustavo Sumpta, Ar.Co, Lisbon, 2008.

  • Large escultura 6 projectos de alunos prof gra a costa cabral 79 80

    "Sculpture" with Graça Costa Cabral. Students Projects. 1979/80.

  • Large estagio escultura pedra a chissano out 81 mar 82 arco lisboa

    Stone sculpture internship at Ar.Co. Alberto Chissano, 1981-82.

  • Large cream dream proj na escultura 2000 joana vasc e vitor rua

    "Cream Dream". Project at the Sculpture Department by Joana Vasconcelos and Vítor Rua, Ar.Co, 2000.

  • Large dscn0025xxxx

    Sculpture department - exercise "Shelters" for rancisco Tropa's project SIM NÃO, 2001. Departamento de Escultura. Exercício "Abrigos" para o projecto SIM NÃO de Francisco Tropa. 2006.

  • Large w koji enoukura 1989

    Concrete Sculpture Workshop with Koji Enokura (support from SECIL). Quinta de S. Miguel, Almada, 1989.

  • Large 1987 cursos fse oficina de pedra almada ii

    European Social Fund Courses - Sculpture. Quinta de S. Miguel, Almada, 1987.

  • Large a workshop aias escultura out 1992

    Sculpture - AIAS Workshops October 1992. Ar.Co, Lisbon.

  • Large a simp evora 1981 jo o cutileiro

    "International Stone Sculpture Symposium - Évora 81". João Cutileiro.

  • Large  mg 1690xxxx

    Plaster Casts Workshop with Venâncio Neves. Ar.Co, Lisbon, 2007.