Category Archives: Brazil

Club tropicalia: the mesmerising power of Brazilian art

Live parrots, rainbow hammocks, exploding bricks … Britain is on the verge of a Brazilian art invasion – and it all started with a wartime gift for embattled airmen

In the autumn of 1943, the Brazilian art world decided it wanted to do something to cheer up wartime Britain and raise money for its embattled airmen. Seventy artists – including several stars of the country’s emerging art scene – clubbed together and 168 pictures were sent to the UK for exhibition and sale.

“As artists,” they wrote, “this was the best way we could find to express to the English our admiration and solidarity.” Britain’s ambassador in Rio de Janeiro wrote to foreign secretary Anthony Eden, asking for £25 to cover transport costs, pointing out that the Brazilians had framed the paintings themselves so “that we should be spared the difficulties [of doing so] in wartime”.

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Source: gad

Kaiser: The Greatest Footballer Never to Play Football review – meet the Brazilian Mr Ripley

This gripping documentary tells an almost unbelievable tale about a man who conned club after club into funding his lifestyle as a football star in Rio

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This is a fascinating documentary from British film-maker Louis Myles about someone who in the 80s and 90s became a legend in the world of Brazilian football. Someone whose pure outrageousness was hiding in plain sight. His rackety career tells you a lot about human nature and people’s willingness to be fooled; about a media that saw its job simply as cheerleading; and about the Enronised nature of celebrity. It reminded me weirdly of The Talented Mr Ripley, or Bart Layton’s classic The Imposter, in that it’s about a sociopath and parasite. It is by turns bizarre, funny and desperately sad. It’s also about something too poignant to be toxic masculinity – more like rancid masculinity; masculinity that has gone off, like old milk left out of the fridge.

Our antihero is Carlos “Kaiser” Henrique Raposo, now in his mid-50s, a former footballer from Brazil. He says his nickname is a respectful tribute to his playing resemblance to the German football star Franz “Der Kaiser” Beckenbauer, but it seems more likely that it’s because Kaiser was a brand of beer. For approximately 20 years, in the 1980s and 90s, Kaiser was employed as a footballer by a number of top Rio de Janeiro clubs. But he never actually played a match, never so much as kicked a ball. For all those years, he lived the life: he was a party animal and nightclub king. He was good-looking, a great dancer, a notorious womaniser and an inveterate wearer of tiny Speedos. He did everything footballers were supposed to do – except play football. The one time he was actually forced on to the field during a match, he pretended to have heard an opposing fan shout insults at the chairman, leapt into the crowd to start a fight and was duly sent off.

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Source: gad

Trump of the tropics: the 'dangerous' candidate leading Brazil's presidential race

Jair Bolsonaro has openly cheered dictatorship and publicly insulted women. Now he’s deploying Trump-like tactics in his race for the presidency

Jair Bolsonaro’s disciples had packed the arrivals hall of this far-flung Amazonian airport, united by their contempt for the left and an unbreakable determination to score a selfie with the man they call “the Myth”.

“He’s Brazil’s hope! A light at the end of the tunnel! A new horizon!” gushed Fernando Vieira, one of hundreds of fans there to greet a far-right firebrand who cheerleads for dictatorship but could soon become leader of the world’s fourth-largest democracy.

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Source: gad

Police operation in Rio favela leaves at least eight people dead

Allegations that some of the victims were innocent residents executed in a revenge mission after a police officer was killed there

A police operation in a Rio favela has left at least eight people dead amid allegations that some of the victims were innocent residents executed in a revenge mission after a police officer was killed there this week. Police said they were attacked by drug gangsters.

The bloody operation in the Rocinha favela, located near postcard beaches like Leblon, came six months after the army briefly occupied the favela following a week of gun battles between rival drug gangs, and five weeks after president Michel Temer put the military in charge of Rio security .

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Source: gad

Pollution, illness, threats and murder: is this Amazon factory the link?

The death of a Brazilian community leader followed concerns about contaminated water around the aluminium plant but its Norwegian owners deny responsibility

For years, the small communities near an industrial park in Barcarena, in the Brazilian Amazon state of Pará, complained that a Norwegian-owned aluminium plant and other factories were contaminating their water, causing diarrhoea and vomiting and poisoning fish and local produce.

In November they launched a $154m legal claim for environmental and moral damages against the Pará state government, the Hydro Alunorte alumina refinery and the Albras aluminium factory. The Norwegian company Norsk Hydro owns 92% of Hydro Alunorte and 51% of Albras.

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Source: gad

Protests held across Brazil after Rio councillor shot dead

Marielle Franco, known for criticism of police tactics, was killed in apparent assassination

Protests were held across Brazil after a popular Rio city councillor and her driver were shot dead by two men in what appears to have been a targeted assassination.

Marielle Franco, 38, was a groundbreaking politician who had become a voice for disadvantaged people in the teeming favelas that are home to almost one-quarter of Rio de Janeiro’s population, where grinding poverty, police brutality and shootouts with drug gangs are routine.

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Source: gad

'There are a lot of unknowns': British scientists set to work on Zika vaccine

Research begins on £4.7m project with scientific community still puzzled by concentrated but intense spate of birth defects in Brazil

Scientists in the UK have started work on developing a vaccine to protect women against the Zika virus.

The £4.7m project, involving the universities of Manchester and Liverpool, and Public Health England, aims to have trials on humans up and running within the next three years.

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Source: gad

At least 7.7m Brazilians forced to leave homes since 2000, study finds

Georeferencing helps reveal the scale of impact from natural disasters and dam building

At least 7.7 million Brazilians, or one every minute, have been forced to leave their homes since 2000, a pioneering study has found.

Of those, 6.4 million moved after large-scale flooding, droughts and other natural disasters, while 1.2 million were forced out by large-scale construction projects like dams.

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Source: gad

We must honour lost land defenders by fighting the system which killed them

Two more defenders in Latin America have lost their lives challenging their country’s economic growth model which prizes profit at all cost

As the Guardian and Global Witness revealed that almost four environmental defenders were murdered every week in 2017, War on Want learned of two more killings through our Latin American partner organisations.

On 24 January, Márcio “Marcinho” Matos, involved in the fight for rights of landless peasants in Bahia in north-east Brazil, was shot in front of his son. Three days later, Temístocles “don Temis” Machado, a prominent figure in the struggle of Afro-Colombian communities across the Colombian Pacific, was murdered in his home in the Isla de Paz community.

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Source: gad

Neymar facing up to three months out, warns Brazil team doctor

  • PSG and Brazil forward could miss rest of club season
  • Doctor: Neymar is sad, but know he has no alternative

The Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar is expected to be out of action for up to three months after he undergoes surgery on his broken metatarsal, according to Brazil’s team doctor.

Rodrigo Lasmar, quoted on the website of the Brazilian newspaper O Globo, said the world’s most expensive footballer was resigned to the lengthy lay-off. The 26-year-old was carried off nine minutes from the end of his side’s 3-0 win over Marseille on Sunday.

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Source: gad