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Handwritten letter from Emiliano Di Cavalcanti (1941)

Handwritten letter from Emiliano Di Cavalcanti (1941)

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"I'm very neurasthenic and nervous I think / it's ailments of age."

Handwritten letter from Emiliano Di Cavalcanti to Gildo. A leaf. In Portuguese. 14 cm x 20 cm. São Paulo July 23, 1941. Perfect condition. Single piece.


Blue headed paper. Inside a rectangle with the image of a twin-engine plane the words: “BY AVIÃO VIA VASP”

São Paulo July 23, 1941

Avenida Ypiranga 480
Box 906

My dear Gildo

The day before yesterday, I called you in response / urgently to your letter. I already tried to send / fetch my things as my grandmother / OLD Mother used to say, mother of a Pae who was from the northeast of Brazil. I wanted you to tell me how much / the possible boxing or other additional expenses cost you. It is not necessary to add that I am free of charge and I would like you to come and spend a few days with me here in São Paulo. / I'm very neurasthenic and nervous, I think / it's ailments of age. How are you? Write to me whenever you can. / A big hug from yours

Di Cavalcanti (signed)
Remembrance to Ignez

Di Cavalcanti (1897 - 1976) was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1897, but his family's Northeastern roots were always present in his work. However, his artistic life would take off with his move to São Paulo, where he idealized and organized the Modern Art Week of 1922, at the Teatro Municipal in the city of São Paulo. This event inaugurated Modernism in Brazil, a movement that became a cultural reference in the 20th century.

Di Cavalcanti took advantage of the artistic freedom of this new way of thinking to build, above all, Brazilian art. He traveled through several countries in Europe, having a strong influence of German expressionism and Cubism, however, with these references he portrayed characteristic Brazilian themes, such as carnivals, workers, favelas, and even the miscegenation of typical Brazilian races, that until then was hidden behind an attempt to Europeanize the country.

Undoubtedly, Di Cavalcanti is an inspiring figure, but he also lived through his difficult times. He was persecuted and imprisoned for his political convictions in a Brazil convulsed by the totalitarian advance of Getúlio Vargas' Estado Novo. Freed, he fled to Paris, from where he had to escape once again due to World War II. All these events, far beyond historical facts, had a profound impact on the artist's spirit, who suffered from the incidents around him.

In 1941, Cavalcanti wrote this letter dedicated to his friend Gildo, in which he reveals himself to be very neurasthenic and nervous, which he himself believed to be “ailments of age” . It is engaging and intriguing to discover, through the writings of these great personalities, confessions of their intimacy that demonstrate that they are more fragile and human than recorded in the history books. Finally, these collectibles have the power to connect us with the past in a way that official biographies are incapable of, as they bring us closer to that informality of everyday life, in which we see ourselves mirrored.

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