Architecture and Power: The Palaces of Brasília

OPENING & LECTURE 1/11 2023 18h
Exhibition, 1/11 – 30/11 2023
Prague, Bethlehem Chapel

The exhibition „Architecture and Power: The Palaces of Brasília“ is an initiative of the Embassy of Brazil in the Czech Republic, in collaboration with the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Brazil, the Czech Technical University of Prague and the Czech Chamber of Architects.
It is part of a series of activities aimed at strengthening cultural exchange between Brazil and the Czech Republic, as well as promoting academic collaboration with Brazilian institutions. The planned events will address aspects of modern architecture and urbanism in both countries, with a special focus on the cities of Brasília and Zlin.
In this exhibition, the intention is to present a vision of Brasília’s architecture and its palaces, highlighting them as expressions of power. Power is seen as the capacity and ability to execute, reflected in the construction of the new capital, Brasília. Power is also associated with the essence of the Democratic Rule of Law, materialized in the palaces built for the capital’s relocation, such as the Palácio da Alvorada, the Palácio do Planalto, the Supreme Federal Court, and the National Congress. Finally, power is manifested in actions that influence and represent the culture, values, and principles of the country, as exemplified by the Palácio Itamaraty.
The realization of this exhibition is grounded in extensive research conducted to select graphic elements from various public and private collections, with the aiming to illustrate these aspects of Brasília’s architecture. It is based upon a script that portrays three significant moments in the epic story of Brazil’s capital relocation. These elements include drawings of the original palace designs, photographs from the construction period, and contemporary records of the architecture.
The event will take place in Bethlehem Chapel in the city of Prague from November 1st to December 31st, 2023, and its realization also contributes to the promotion of the importance of Brazil’s artistic and cultural heritage, representative of Brazilian architecture and identity.



Conference, 2/11 2023, 9-18h
Faculty of Civil Engineering, Auditorium C206
Czech Technical University in Prague

The international conference  will be based on the topic the visions of modern cities, documented on the examples of Brasilia and Zlín, but also other newly founded cities in the middle of the twentieth century in both countries. The connecting bridge is the personalities of Tomáš and J.A. Baťa, etc. Kubitschek and their visions about modern setlements. These were implemented through the development of Zlín, the new Brazilian cities as Batatuba, Bataguasso, Batayporã and others, and later on, the establishment of the new capital of Brazil. A modern city, its planning and starting points, comparing of the Czech and Brazilian conditions in contrast between both countries in terms of area, climate and history. The conference will be a open discussion towards assessment of the global significance of the Czech contribution to the field of newly established settlements in the 20th century.




9:00h WELCOME  


9.15h Welcome by Ambassador Sonia Gomes / CVUT




09.30h CZ – Ing. Arch. Jan SapakModern Urbanism – Phenomenon Zlín

10.15h CZ – Doc. Radomíra Sedláková  – Architecture in the name of Bata’s Company

11.00h BR – Arch. Elcio Gomes da SilvaBrasília, the modern city

11.45h BR – Arch. André Araújo AlmeidaModern city in Brazil: a short critical review


12.30h DEBATE / The implementation of the cities & the modern vision: ALL GUESTS


13.00h BREAK




14.00h CZ – Petr Kopcil –  NFJABATA  – VISION: expansion to the world

14.30h CZ – Ing. Arch. Barbora Hejtmánková, Ph.D.Brasilia through the eyes of a visitor

15.00h BR – Arch. Soraya Brixi The Pilot Plan – Perceptual fragments

15.30h CZ – Mgr. Barbora Vacková, Ph.D. – Sociologic aspects of Zlín 

16.00h CZ – Mgr. Lucie Šmardová –  Zlín Architecture Manual (ZAM)

16.30h BR – Ambassador Sonia GomesBrasília, my home


17.00h DEBATE / Round table: ALL GUESTS


18.00h END


Coordination: Anna Maria Černá, Ilona Sochorova, Marco Maio





Elcio Gomes

Lecture : Brasília, the modern city

Background: Elcio Gomes is a Brazilian architect who earned his doctoral degree from the University of Brasília in 2012.

Since 2002, he has been working as an architect in the Brazilian Parliament.

He is also a partner at the GSR Architectural Office in Brasília, specializing in architectural competitions.

Researcher at the University of Brasília, had investigations focusing on Brazilian Modern Architecture, Integration between architecture and engineering and the Conservation of Modern Architecture.

With many productions related to these areas, he is author of books like „The Original Palaces of Brasília“ and „National Congress: The Construction of the Space of Democracy.


André Araújo Almeida

Lecture : Modern city in Brazil: a short critical review

Unifor/Mackenzie/LUH – professor at the University of Fortaleza and a doctoral candidate/researcher at Mackenzie University in partnership with Leibniz Hannover


Soraya Brixi

Lecture : The Pilot Plan – Perceptual fragments

Architect and Urban Planner. Abstract: The lecture aims to bring together Lucio Costa’s  humanist approach and some contemporary perceptual fragments of Brasilia.