Faro's battle for becoming Cultural Capital, a talented young Architect and "Steak Tartare" (Eng.)
Faro's attempt to represent Portugal as the Cultural Capital in 2027 quickly failed. Despite of a great program with a lot of “Modernist Architecture". Even with a tribute to the local 1950s architect Manuel Gomes da Costa, Faro - like Maastricht in 2018 - had to let other cities take precedence. Evora, Braga, Aveiro and Ponta Delgada are still on the run. The effort of Faro with 'Modern Architecture" at least resulted in a nice brochure of the architectural heritage. See the next brochure (in English).
The brochure was in collaboration with the French couple Christophe & Angelique de Oliveira (with Portuguese roots) who run the hotel “The Modernists” in Faro and have made “Modernist Architecture" as their promotional model. Last year they had their first "Modernist Weekend" in Faro with guided tours, a conference, a retro dinner, an exhibition and the opportunity to visit famous buildings, including Manuel Gomes da Costa's "Casa Gago Rosa". Another “Modernist Weekend” is planned for the end of this year and they also recently started offering guided tours through their website: https://www.themodernist.pt
In terms of architecture in the spotlights , Faro does not have to be afraid, because there always is a new chance. The talented young architect Philippe Paixão, who is based in Faro with his office Corpo Atelier, for example, was recently named one of the "20 most talented young architects of 2022 in the world" by ArchDaily magazine. No small burden on the shoulders of a young office with a limited, but surprising production.
Philippe Paixão and Corpo Atelier have already found a way to the architecture magazines with some remarkable “residential houses” in Vilamoura. Such as the “House between two white walls” that impresses with its open space with a swimming pool that seems to be carved out between two habitable walls.
The other project is the “House with the five terraces and a garden” reminiscent of a house with concrete “Hula Hoeps” that provides a varied and transparent transitional space around the building.
A recently completed project is Philippe Paixão's own home at the end of a dead end street, Rua Manuel Penteado against the old fortress wall of Faro. It surprises with its modesty and subtle details. A next step in Philippe's and Faro's careers is the invitation he has received to co-represent Portugal at this year's Venice Architecture Biennale with the theme “O Laboratorio do Futuro”. Faro is highly interested and will certainly pay some special attention to his participation
Philippe Paixão and Corpo Atelier are part of the recently opened Galerie Gama Rama in Faro with a shop and an Art Studios in a beautiful old building in Rua do Prior no.13 that is crossed over by a covered “Bridge" connected to the property opposite it. A gallery you have to visit and,after a challenging monumental staircase, you wil be surprised about the "fresh" art and the affordable prices.
If you visit this part of Faro where the terraces, pubs and restaurants give a new flair to a neighborhood, you should certainly pay a visit to P'tit Bistró at Avenida da República 86. Special for the non-vegetarians among us, there is a dish on the menu that you rarely find on a menu in Portugal: the Steak Tartare in a small and a large version. In Belgium it is a common specialty, of raw beef with a raw egg and accessories. A dish that I mainly know from nightly trips in Liège (B), where this speciality is prepared and served at your table. However, the Steak Tartare is only for non-vegetarian enthusiasts. It is like Modern Architecture: you love it or you hate it.