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  • Arts & Museums

    »Pernambuco Contemporary Art Museum

    Pernambuco Contemporary Art Museum (MAC-PE) was opened on December, 23rd, 1966, as a donation of part of Ambassador Assis Chateaubriand's collection to the state. Today it offers more than 4,000 works from various techniques, eras and styles. The museum has pieces by Portinari, Burle Marx, Eliseu Visconti and many other artists famous for depicting local history and culture. The building itself was built in 1765, and it is a site of Pernambuco's Historical and Artistic Heritage because it is the former public jail of Olinda.

    Rua 13 de Maio, 157
    Olinda, Pernambuco 53020-170

    »Mamulengo Museum

    Mamulengo is a type of puppet from northeast of Brazil, specially Pernambuco. The origin of the name is controversial, but it is believed it comes from mão molenga which literally means flaccid hands, needed to give movements to the puppet. The museum was opened in 1994 in a building with architecture attributes from the latter 19th century. It offers around 1,200 old and contemporary puppets, and is the first museum of popular dolls from Brazil and Latin America. There are also dedicated rooms with puppets depicting some of the most famous local culture matters.

    Rua de São Bento, 344
    Olinda, Pernambuco 53020-080

    »Gilberto Freyre Foundation

    Gilberto Freyre is a famous writer and sociologist from Pernambuco. His former house is now a museum of his own work and life. It also hosts seasonal expositions. When exploring his house you will be able to see the artist's personal collection of handcrafted items and furniture, as well as the beautiful greenery surrounding the area.

    Rua Dois Irmãos, 320
    Recife, Pernambuco 52071-440

    »Espaço Ciência

    Espaço Ciência mixes indoor exhibitions with hundreds of interactive outdoor experiments. Beyond the high quality museum exhibitions, it offers a planetarium, an auditorium, an amphitheater, six science and computer labs and a beautiful mangrove forest that can be admired, studied and learned from. It also has an astronomic observatory in Alto da Sé, Olinda, which receives more than 50,000 visitors yearly.

    Complexo de Salgadinho, Parque Memorial Arcoverde
    Olinda, Pernambuco 53110-800

    »Joaquim Nabuco Foundation

    Joaquim Nabuco Foundation, formerly known as the Joaquim Nabuco Institute, is a goverment institution for the preservation of Brazil's cultural and historic legacy regarding Joaquim Nabuco's work. Here you will find the Homem do Nordeste Museum, the José Carlos Cavalcanti Borges Movie Theater, the Baobá Gallery, the Vicente do Rego Monteiro Gallery and six other places for cultural and historical subjects. Foundation also offers rental spaces for cultural events, reprints of old documents, and digitalization of texts and pictures, most of which are available at the official website.

    Avenida Dezessete de Agosto, 2187
    Recife, Pernambuco 52061-540

    »Homem do Nordeste Museum

    Homem do Nordeste Museum carries on the cultural heritage of Indian, Portuguese and African people to the new generation of Brazilian people. From the construction material of 18th and 19th centuries to the mocambos, from ex-votos to African cult objects, from moppets and popular toys to Vitalino's ceramic, the place is filled with a huge collection of cultural artifacts. The new long-term exhibition, named "Nordeste: Territórios Plurais, Culturais e Direitos Coletivos," presents a mural of Brazilian everyday behavior.

    Avenida 17 de Agosto, 2187
    Recife, Pernambuco 52061-540

    »Pernambuco State Museum

    Pernambuco State Museum is located in Graças neighborhood, and is set in a beautiful antique mansion where once lived Augusto Frederico, the son of the Beberibe Baron. It hosts a huge collection of more than 14,000 items showing Pernambuco's history regarding Afro-Brazilian culture, Indian culture, furniture, sacred arts, porcelain, crystals, paintings and the local Dutch presence.

    Avenida Rui Barbosa, 960
    Recife, Pernambuco 52011-040

    »Abolição Museum

    Abolição Museum is a center for African and Brazilian culture attached to Brazilian Institute of Museums - IBRAM and to the Ministry of Culture. It is one of the few museums in Brazil to depict the subject of slavery abolition in Brazil. The museum is situated at Sobrado da Madalena, which was home to Councillor João Alfredo, a famous abolitionist who influenced the laws that liberated Brazil from slavery. There is a library and archive with more than 1,900 literary works, a video library/mini auditorium, a music experimentation lab, six exhibition rooms and an outdoor theater.

    Rua Benfica, 1150
    Recife, Pernambuco 50720-001

    »Kahal Zur Israel Synagogue Museum (Sinagoga Kahal Zur Israel)

    The existence of the Jewish community was tolerated in Recife until the Dutch ruled the region. In the later years, however, the Jews had to migrate and the synagogue that they built, the first one in the Americas, was demolished by the later powers. After several excavations near the Bom Jesus street, relics of the ancient synagogue were found. The other archaeological findings near the site included a "bor" and the "Miqve" which are revered as important Jewish religious symbols. In order to enlighten visitors of the ancient Jewish community and the synagogue, a museum was built on its site. This museum, known as the Kahal Zur Israel Synagogue Museum (Sinagoga Kahal Zur Israel), has been segregated into three floors. The ground floors displays the collection of relics, artifacts and other remains found in excavations. On the first floor, there is a synagogue which is actually a reproduction of the earlier synagogue. The third floor is dedicated towards documentaries and guided tours which tell the history of the Jews and the synagogue as well as the process of rebuilding of the site. Call ahead to know more.

    Rua do Bom Jesus 197/203
    Recife, 50030-170

    »Aloisio Magalhães Modern Art Museum

    Named after the artist, designer and cultural activist from Pernambuco, this museum is located in an old mansion from 19th century on the banks of Capibaribe River. The 3-story wood-floored building, offers seven exhibition rooms, a library specialized in modern and contemporary art, a room for educational activities, an auditorium, and a cafe.

    Rua da Aurora, 265
    Recife, Pernambuco 50060-010

    »Giant Dolls Museum

    The local giant dolls are the most representative objects of Brazilian carnival in Pernambuco, one of the biggest street carnival events in the world bringing more than 1,1 million people to the streets of Recife and Olinda. This museum emerged from the need of local tourism to offer a cultural space to receive foreigners and locals who want to contemplate these beautiful dolls not only during the carnival, but through the whole year. There is a permanent exhibition of 50 dolls depicting famous people from Pernambuco, from Brazil and from the whole world. The visit is accompanied by a guide who exposes the origin of this culture and explains the process of creating the dolls.

    Rua do Bom Jesus, 183
    Recife, Pernambuco 50030-170

    »Sculpture Park

    Set on a jetty that separates the open sea from Recife's harbor, this outdoor sculpture exhibition was designed by Francisco Brennand, one of the most famous local artists. Getting there itself is an attraction, as you can get there either by a boat ride from Marco Zero or by car through the jetty (which provides a beautiful view). The sculptures represent animals and humans that look like they are always pointing to or looking at the sky.

    Arrecifes do Porto do Recife
    Recife, Pernambuco 51010-210
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