Aleca Le Blanc is a scholar of modernism, specializing in Brazilian art and architecture of the twentieth century. She is currently at work on a book about that period entitled, Concrete and Steel: Art and Industry in Rio de Janeiro, which examines how an industrial ethos infused Brazilian visual culture on all levels, from the creation of art objects to the burgeoning field of design, as well as in architecture and urbanism. She is also interested in the ways that nationalism and internationalism have been configured across the West, and has written about different moments when Brazilians have constructed a national image for foreign consumption. She is currently developing a multi-year research project entitled The Material of Form: Industrialism and the Latin American Avant-Garde. Sponsored by the Getty, it will contribute to the field of material studies by bringing together art historians and conservation scientists to study artworks made in Latin America with industrial materials during the post-war period. This project will result in two publications as well as an exhibition at the Getty in 2017, timed to coincide with Pacific Standard Time: Los Angeles/Latin America. She was the Managing Editor of the Getty Research Journal from 2012-2014.
Ph.D., University of Southern California
M.A., Columbia University
B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara
Area of Specialization: Modern Latin American art and architecture with a focus on Brazil; global modernisms, architecture and urbanism, visual culture, abstraction, institutional histories, and collecting and display.
“Brazilian modernity and developmentalism: Artists, critics, and institutions at mid-century” in The Arts of Brazil: Reconnecting Traditions, eds. Roberto Conduru and Claudia Mattos (Bilingual compilation of essays on Brazilian art history from the Ancient World to the present) (Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute, 2015).
“The Disorder and Progress of Brazilian Visual Culture in 1959” in Breathless Days, 1959-1960, eds. Serge Guilbaut and John O’Brian, (Duke University Press, 2015).
“Under Construction: Rio de Janeiro in 1959” in Transatlantic Encounters: Avant-Garde Discourses in Spain and Latin America 1920–1970, ed. Paula Barreiro López (Madrid: Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, 2015).
“Traveling through Time and Space: Calder in Brazil” in Calder and Abstraction: From Avant-garde to Iconic, ed. Stephanie Barron. (Los Angeles and New York: Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Prestel Publishing, 2013): 120-135
“Ciudad Universitaria de Caracas,” and “Church of Saint Francis of Assisi,” in Art & Place; Site-specific Art of the Americas (London: Phaidon, 2013); 286-287, 300-301
“’A Democratic Education for the Masses’: Ivan Serpa at the Museu de Arte Moderna,” in Ivan Serpa: Pioneering Abstraction in Brazil Exhibition catalogue. (New York: Dickinson, 2012): 9-21
“Palmeiras and Pilotis: Promoting Brazil with Modern Architecture.” Third Text: Brazil special issue (February 2012): 103-116.
“Building the Tropical World of Tomorrow: The Construction of Brasilidade at the 1939 New York World’s Fair.” Hemisphere: Visual Cultures of the Americas 2 (Summer 2009): 26-45.