Nhô Caboclo [Manoel Fontoura]

1910, Águas Belas | PE - Brazil 

1976, Refice | PE - Brazil

Born around the first decade of the 20th century, Nhô Caboclo is an artist of extraordinary importance, whose work urgently requires a monographic treatment. Perhaps he was part of the Fulniô community, acculturated Indians of Águas Belas, Pernambuco, but he always made a big mystery about his origins and affiliation: “I didn't know anyone, I was born alone.” Mestizo, with a cafuza appearance, he grew up on a farm in Garanhuns. Since he was a boy, he made objects of clay and the of most unusual materials, such as goat-beard and linheira manioc. Years later he reports about himself in Caruaru “producing clay pieces with Vitalino”. But his great production was made on the basis of wood and tinplate.

He declared his clay pieces as “dead” because as he stated, “one does not make a sword fighter out of clay, one does not make a steam gear to work with in the wind. I like the brave pieces, the tough ones. The hand-made ones”. Nhô Caboclo began to make manual pieces, that is, the ones with movement, when he dreamed with a gear or went to the movies”. Successively a tinker, a shoemaker, a carpenter, a blacksmith, Nhô Caboclo, according to his own words, populated his pieces from the caboclo Urubu ("a caboclo who was never dominated"), from the black Tuim (“There's this brand only in Pedra do Buíque of Delmiro Gouveia ”), of the Jabu chiefs (” from the jungles ”), of second lieutenants, corporal, sergeants, captains, of four-armed caboclos (” there are some of them in the forest, abroad, it does not matter to run standing or in four feet ”).

"Everything I do has a history.”

Source: Small Dictionary of the Brazilian People, 20th century | Lélia Coelho Frota - Airplane, 2005


Collective Exhibitions:

2013 Janete Costa “A look”, Janete Costa Museum, Niterói, RJ, Brazil

2011 Poetic Machines, Casa do Pontal Museum, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

2010 Casa Cor - Ugo di Pace, Joquey Clube, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

2008 Brazilian People's Imaginary, Antiquarius Restaurant, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

2006 Viva Cultura Viva do Povo Brasileiro, Afro Brazil Museum, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

2006 SOMOS - the popular Brazilian creation, Santander Cultural Center, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil

2004-2005 Form, Color and Expression: a collection of Brazilian art, Galeria Estação, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

2002 Pop Brasil: popular art and the popular in the art, Banco do Brasil Cultural Center, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

1995 The Heirs of the Night: fragments of the black imaginary, Belo Horizonte Cultural Center, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

1995 The Heirs of the Night: fragments of the black imaginary, Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

1994 The Heirs of the Night: fragments of the imaginary, Espaço Cultural SOS Sul, Brasília, DF, Brazil

1992 Brasilien: Entdeckung und Selbstentdeckung (Brazil: Discovery and Self-cover), Kunsthaus Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland


Selected Publications:

 2012 Janete Costa “A look”, Mario Santos, Lis Gráfica, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

2010 Soraya Cals Catalog, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

2006 Viva Cultura Viva do Povo Brasileiro, Emanoel Araujo, Museo Afro, São Paulo, SP, Brazil


são paulo

Janete Costa: A Glance

16.12.2012 - 31.03.2013