Friday, May 22, 2009

Friday's Favorites-Butterfly Tray

I bought this butterfly tray three years ago from my step-brother's wife's antique store. As you can see by the label above, there are some partial or indecipherable words, but there's no info as far as date. The inlay around the edge sets everything off so beautifully, but it's the butterflies that spark my imagination. Look at all those colors and patterns! The wonders of nature are just beyond belief, but there it is right before our eyes.

The butterfly or moth in the top left corner is almost disintegrated, but the rest are in remarkable shape. The big blue one in the middle is my favorite. Oh, wait a minute, I think the blue one with the black edges, or maybe the white one in the bottom right corner. Well, I guess it's impossible to pick a favorite. I just love the whole package, and take great delight in cleaning the glass so that I can look at it up close. Even far away, like sitting on the couch or coming in the door, the colors will immediately draw your eye to it.

I googled the few words that I could make out, namely Carlos Z, Rio De Janeiro and Brasil, and many entries on two men came up. Either one of them could fit the bill, but then again not really. There were a lot of entries in Spanish which I couldn't understand, but basically it was down to these two. I suppose they could have done it in their earlier days or as a hobby as opposed to their public works. If you have any ideas, or can read Spanish or know how to do research on stuff like this better than I do, please feel free to give me some advice or direction!

Here are the two names that came up. It makes for interesting reading if you're into this kind of thing. I didn't include photos of their work because they didn't resemble the tray at all.

Zéfiro, Carlos (1921 - 1992)
Critical commentary: One of the most popular authors of pornographic comic strips of the end of the 1950s and 1960s in Brazil, the name of Carlos Zéfiro was transformed into a myth due, among other reasons, to the mystery surrounding the man behind the pseudonym, a secret maintained until recently. Alcides de Aguiar Caminha, a native of the Rio de Janeiro neighbourhood of Anchieta and retired civil servant, only admitted to the pseudonym of Carlos Zéfiro in 1991, in an interview with the magazine Playboy. He died in the following year at the age of 70.

Zilio, Carlos (1921 -1944)
Biography: Carlos Augusto da Silva Zilio (Rio de Janeiro, 1944- ). Painter, lecturer. From 1963 onwards, studied at the Institute of Fine Arts of Rio de Janeiro, where he was a pupil of Iberê Camargo (1914 - 1994). Graduated in psychology from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) in 1973. In 1975, he became one of the editors of the magazine Malasartes. His output during the 1960s and 1970s revealed a broad sense of social criticism, as was the case in Lute [Fight!](1967) or in Para um Jovem de Brilhante Futuro [For a Young Man with a Brilliant Future](1973). In 1976, as a result of political persecution, he went to Paris, completing a doctorate there in 1980 at the University of Paris VIII. He devoted himself exclusively to painting, beginning to execute abstract works from 1978 onwards. After his return to Brazil, he created an advanced course in the History of Art and Architecture in Brazil on which he lectured, also teaching on the Masters Degree Course in the Social History of Culture at the History Department of the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC/RJ). He was one of the founders of the magazine Gávea, of which he was the editor from 1984 to 1986. He pursued post-doctoral studies with Hubert Damisch, at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, in Paris, in 1992. Two years later, he lectured at the School of Fine Arts of the UFRJ (EBA/UFRJ). Among other books, he has published A Querela do Brasil: a questão de identidade na arte brasileira [The Brazilian Quarrel: the question of identity in Brazilian art ], which appeared for the first time in 1982.


Ginger said...

I don't read spanish either. But I am with you, the blue butterflies are beautiful. They really stand out. There's no date anywhere on it?

Anonymous said...
His name is Carlos Zipperer there is more of his art at this site :)

Tony said...

I was in the Merchant Navy and we used to buy these beautiful trays as souveniers whilst in Brazil. I bought several in Santos back in 1974. They all had the startling blue butterflies. They were fairly common in those days and only cost a few pounds. You want to keep it away from sunlight or it will fade.

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