Yara Augusto

Panel 6C: Avant-garde and Artist’s Books
Session 6 – July 3, 15:30 – 17:30

The Playful Creation Process of O perfeito cozinheiro das almas deste mundo, Diary of Oswald de Andrade’s Garçonnière

With its verbal signs, free drawings and integration of different materials and techniques, O perfeito cozinheiro das almas deste mundo (The perfect cook of the souls of this world, 1918) was composed as a collective notebook, kind of memory diary that registers the stimulating friendship among goers who attended the garçonnière maintained by the Brazilian writer and poet Oswald de Andrade (1890-1954). It draws on a collaborative creative process, guided by the combination of registration, marking, cutting, collage and assembly operations. In this artist’s book, which articulates language manipulation, intermedial contact and aesthetic experimentalism, we inquire the practice of a creative process that interweaves play and writing, using play as a motor to expand the possibilities of expression and meaning. Considered a central figure of Brazilian Modernism, Oswald de Andrade was the mentor of Anthropophagic movement, which proposed that the critical devouring of foreign cultural values, digested and recombined with local references, could lead to an authentic and provocative art. Accordingly to this concept, during the pre-modernism period, the mentioned work makes use of different expressive features and free experimentalism, in a preview of what would hatch during the Modern Art Week, in 1922, mark of modernity in Brazilian art and Latin American culture. In this sense, this study investigates how the instance of play between arts and medias animates the production of the avant-garde work O perfeito cozinheiro das almas deste mundo, convivial album of Oswald de Andrade’s garçonnière. We analyze how the formal and semantic implications of the playful writing, emerged from an original creative process, culminates in the  invention of new representative regimes. In order to do that, we employ a transdisciplinary theoretical approach, based on contributions of Comparative Literature Studies, Aesthetics, Semiotics, Inter-art and Intermedial Studies.


Yara Augusto is a PHD in Comparative Literature and Theory of Literature Studies at Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), with doctoral interniship at Université Paris Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3 and Centre de Recherches Interuniversitaire sur les champs culturels en Amérique Latine (CRICCAL). Rewarded as the author of the best doctoral thesis of the year 2016 and best doctoral thesis of  2014/ 2015/ 2016 by Post-graduation program of Literary Studies (Pos-lit UFMG). Master in Theory of Literature Studies at UFMG (2011) and graduated in Letters: Portuguese and Spanish. Profesor and researcher of Literature, Arts and Interarts/ Intermedial Studies at Federal Center of Tecnologogical Education since 2016. Coordinator of Art and culture commission at this institution. Invited professor at Universidad de Buenos Aires (AUMG Program), in 2013.