Siza Vieira the Portuguese Architect


Alvaro_Siza_Vieira_ArchitectSiza Vieira is a Portuguese contemporaneous architect that detains a vast and unique acquis of modern buildings. Siza Vieira it is not only recognized and valued in Portugal but also in the entire world. His work it is characterized by its simple lines, but very elegant, that play with light.

Siza Vieira was born in Matosinhos in 25 of June of 1933.

At first he wasn`t interested in architecture but instead he wanted to be a sculptor. However, because his family thought it wasn`t a good life choice (in that time was associated with poverty and misery) he was pressure to study architecture.

So, Siza Vieira goes to the School of Fine Arts of Oporto to study architecture, however because in the first years it had different art disciplines, he intended to surreptitiously shift to sculpture. However, he soon got interested to architecture mainly because of his teachers with stimulating contemporaneous views of architecture.
He wasn`t a very good architect student, but his education in the School of Fine Arts of Oporto broaden his cultural and mental horizons. It was when he was invited to work with his teacher Fernando Távora that all of this changed, because of his great admiration for him.

He attended the School of Fine Arts of Oporto from 1949 to 1955, and his first work was constructed in 1954.

He has several national and international projects among its unique acquis.

Piscina-das-MarésIn Portugal he design “Piscinas de Marés”, in Leça da Palmeira two swimming pools with sea water and seasight with its foundations in the natural rock foundation (finished in  1966). He is the author of the Boa Nova Tea House, also located in Leça da Palmeira, the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Porto, the Library of the University of Aveiro, the Serralves Contemporary Art Museum and the well-known church in Marco de Canaveses .
But its work it isn´t limited to Portugal, it can be seen through all the corners of the world.
In Brazil he created museum for the Iberê Camargo Foundation in Porto Alegre. In the Netherlands he directed the recovery plan of Zone 5, in Schliderswijk.

Meteorology_centre_Alvaro_SizaIn Spain, he sketched the Barcelona Meteorological Centre in Villa Olímpica, the contemporary art museum and the multi-sport pavilion in Galicia, the Faculty of Information Sciences in Santiago de Compostela. In Italy he recovered the Campo di Marte in Venice  and in Autria he restorate the Winkler casino and café.

Nowadays he will finally have a building design by him in Gaia, Portugal (a city right next to Oporto city). “It will be a chapel of small dimensions, suitable to the dimension of Afurada`s population” (says Siza Vieira to the DN).

He received several prizes and awards, nationally and internationally, and in 2005 he was awarded with the keys to Oporto city. But he doesn`t think that the history of architecture depends of awards and prizes. He thinks that the alteration of minds and changing of concepts may turn that awards and prizes irrelevant.

He hopes that his work lingers trough future generations, and that his monuments also endure and won`t be destroyed or became unrecognizable over the course of time.

Because that is what really matters.

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