ABCC member, Unik Vision, organises trade missions and special events to showcase the excellence on offer in Brazil. In September 2019, Unik Vision is coordinating a Brazilian Modernism Architecture Tour aimed at architects, engineers, designers and anyone interested in Modernism and the work of Oscar Niemeyer.
Unik Vision has appointed Brazilian architect, Simone Bigoto, to be the Ambassador for this upcoming tour. Simone recently caught up with the ABCC to explain her experience working with the famous Australian architect Harry Seidler in Australia and her connection with Oscar Niemeyer in Brazil which gives her a unique perspective on Modernism architecture across the two countries.
Left to right: Val Oscroft, Monica Rodrigues Sweeney, Penelope Seidler, Simone Bigoto, Dani Oliver, Richardo Bigoto
Australia and Brazil have a long history of connecting across different sectors, including architecture. It is an honour to be chosen as the Ambassador of the Unik Architecture Tour.
My relationship with both countries began 17 years ago when I first lived in Australia. I came to Sydney at the start of 2002 after having completed a Bachelor in Architecture at Mackenzie University – Sao Paulo. I came to Sydney to study a Post Graduate Course in Stage Design, because dance and architecture are two arts that have been part of my life since I was 14 years old.
During this time, I was preparing myself for a Business and English course at UNSW to get into the Scenography course I had planned and I applied for a job as an Architect which started my work with one of my mentors: Harry Seidler. It was a wonderful experience for me to have worked with Harry Seidler and all his team on my journey. After months working closely with him and his team, at the end of 2002 I decided to come back to Brazil to get married. As soon as Harry knew that, he kindly tried to convince me the opposite and asked me to stay in Sydney to continue working at his office but at that moment the better decision for me was to return to my country.
Before I left his office, Harry introduced me to his great friend Oscar Niemeyer. It was the most wonderful surprise that a young Brazilian architect like me could have! In 2003 just a couple of weeks before I get married I had the honour of meeting the genius Oscar at his own practice in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro.
The connection between me and both genius architects never stopped even after I started my own architecture office in Sao Paulo in 2003... and here I am again, back in Sydney with my husband, Ricardo and my 2 children, Gustavo an eleven year old boy and Isadora, a ten year old girl. We all moved in February last year and I have been working in the architecture field in Sydney since April 2018.