Celebrate BRAZIL! Experience Brazilian Culture @ the Library

Brazil FlagThe entire community is invited to discover the diversity of Brazilian culture, languages and people during the "Celebrate BRAZIL!" programming initiative continuing through May at The Indianapolis Public Library. A variety of free programs will be presented to celebrate the Indianapolis Sister City relationship with Campinas, Brazil.

Events kick off with the "Celebrate BRAZIL Opening Reception and Exhibit" on Wednesday, April 9 beginning at 6 p.m. at Central Library, 40 E. St. Clair Street. Individuals of all ages are invited as Indy Library and other civic representatives will open a special exhibit that includes items relating to several Brazilian themes, including the upcoming World Cup, art, food, music, literature, Carnivale, sports/games/toys, costumes/clothing, and flags of Brazil. A 6 p.m. reception in the Riley Room will feature Brazilian music provided by Kyle Long of Cultural Cannibals along with samples of Brazilian food. At 7 p.m. in the Atrium, representatives will offer welcoming remarks followed by a performance of Brazilian Capoeira, a martial art that combines acrobatics and dance with music. In addition, there also will be performances by pianist Paulo Castro and dancer Raquel Ward.

Throughout the months of April and May, the Library will present a number of free programs at various locations highlighting Brazilian culture. These include:

Discovering Brazil Through Hip-Hop

Brazil was one of the first nations to embrace hip-hop during the music's emergence from the United States in the late 1970s. Brazilians added their own unique twist to the form, adapting the rhythms and language of hip-hop to fit regional cultural traditions. A brief survey of Brazilian hip-hop reveals important lessons of Brazilian society, from social issues to geography to the nation's rich musical history. Join Kyle Long of Cultural Cannibals as he explores the roots of Brazilian hip-hop and examine key figures in the scene.

Expressions of the City: Street Art Discussion

As part of the Library's "Celebrate Brazil" series, adults and teens are invited as local street artists share their stories and explain the importance of street art and graffiti writing are important to the Indy art scene. Panelists include renowned graffiti writer Samuel E. Vazquez, Artur Silva from Cultural Cannibals, BRIDGE Collective's Dan Thompson, and Dave and Holly Combs from the You Art Beautiful campaign. In addition, the documentary "Wrinkles of the City - La Havana" will be presented by the Heartland Film Festival. This documentary produced by street artist JR showcases the street art culture in Cuba. This program will be held in Central Library's Clowes Auditorium.

EARTH & ART: Exploring the Indiana – Brazil Connection

More than 20 years have passed since the Earth Summit of 1992, where leaders from around the world gathered in Rio de Janeiro for a first of its kind conversation about the state of the environment. Local artist Carol Tharp–Perrin will take us on a visual journey to discover our kinship with Brazil through the arts. Explore the arts and environmental concerns for the present and future preservation of earth as our home.

Muraquitã Amulets

Muraquitãs come in many shapes and varieties, but the most well-known is the frog-shaped amulet. These were carved by Tapajos women, a group native to the Amazon River in Brazil. Legends and folklore suggest they were given as gifts or worn as charms that would bring good luck. They became highly prized objects and are now mostly found in museum collections. In this workshop, students will learn about the Amazon, the indigenous people of Brazil, discuss good luck charms, and create their own frog-shaped muraquitãs amulet out of clay.

Contemporary Collage

Beatriz Milhazes is a contemporary Brazilian artist born in Rio De Janeiro in 1960. In her modernist screen prints and paintings she uses bold colors, geometric and organic shapes and repetition to express aspects of Brazilian culture that inspire here such as Carnival, the Rainforest and Bossa Nova music. In this activity, students will learn about color theory, Brazilian culture, and take inspiration from their own lives to create Beatriz Milhazes-inspired collages using colorful translucent vellum, patterned paper, doilies/lace, compasses and stencils.

Folk Art Prints

José Borges is one of Brazil's most beloved folk artists. He is both printmaker and poet. He creates his art by carving wood blocks which are inked and printed onto paper. His Xilogravura woodblock style has become one of Brazil's most loved folk arts and has spawned a tradition in Northeastern Brazil that now involves scores of artists. In this workshop students will create their own printing block and prints inspired by both legend and imagination.

Brazilian Dance

Families are invited to learn about the Samba and other traditional Brazilian dances at this interactive workshop.

Portuguese-English Bilingual Storytime

Families are invited for an interactive storytime in Portuguese and English featuring Brazilian crafts and games.

"Celebrate BRAZIL!" is presented in cooperation with the Campinas, Brazil Sister City Committee and the Office of International & Cultural Affairs - City of Indianapolis, and is sponsored by The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation.

For more information about upcoming free programming, call 275-4099.