Povoado brasileiro em várzea, Sec XVII, Frans Post. Foto: Edouard Fraipont


The collector's dream

It was in 1969 that, driven by a desire to bring together Brazil's historical and artistic records, Olavo Setubal, one of the founders of Itaú, began to collect works of art, documents, objets d'art and books. His first purchase was Povoado numa Planície Arborizada, [Settlement on a woody plain] a painting by Frans Post [part of the Dutch Brazil - Brasil Holandês] module.


Now under the aegis of Itaú Cultural, this collection holds more than twelve thousand pieces and is thought to be the largest Latin American corporate collection.


The pieces on display in the Espaço Olavo Setubal bring together two specific collections from this universe – Brasiliana Itaú and Itaú Numismática – and span five centuries of Brazilian history.

 A team at Itaú Cultural has specially chosen a selection to pay tribute to Setubal, who was crucially responsible for making Itaú Cultural a driving force in bringing Brazilian culture and art to a mass audience in the country.


Walking around such rare artistic and scientific artifacts is an inspiring, educational and pleasant experience: it reveals our past, casts light on our present, and projects our future. You are our guest: get to know this legacy, and help make true Olavo Setubal's dream of allowing anyone interested in art to enjoy the experience of exploring his collection.


Milú Villela