Sculpture is considered the third of the classical arts. It arose in prehistory and underwent many technical and language movements throughout the history of mankind. Classical Greece is the cradle of the sculpture, which emerged in sec. 10 BC, being copied forth by the Romans.

The initial intention was the imitation of nature and the human body through three-dimensional objects. From this, it evolved like art, adding other aspects as the abstract attention, philosophical questions and usefulness furniture.

In ancient times, the most used materials were stone, wood and bronze. Today, many materials have been created and incorporated, such as plastic, resins and steel, enabling more versatility in artistic expression.

In the 8th episode of the series “What would the world be without?” we invited the brazilian sculptor Hugo França to talk about sculpture as an artistic expression and its importance for humanity.


Hugo França

From Porto Alegre (RS), he was born in 1954. He moved to Trancoso (BA) in the early 80’s, where he lived for 15 years, looking for a closer approach to nature. There he discovered a huge waste of material from the extraction and use of wood, which motivated his work as a designer.

Since the late 1980s, Hugo has devoted himself to creating “furniture sculptures” – an expression first used by the critic Ethel Leon and adopted by the designer for his precision in describing the production he performs – not only decorative but functional for use for everyday. The pieces are created respecting to the maximum the original and organic forms of the wood, transforming each matter into a unique work.


I use a specific type of wood called Pequi. The Pequi’s usefulness was to make the canoes. And the beginning of my work was using the canoes that the fishermen no longer used, and taking advantage of this form and adapting them to a furniture.


The main differential of Hugo França’s work is the look he gives to forest and urban waste from the moment they are found – a search that requires constant work by him and his team through the woods and fields of Trancoso. Everything is taken advantage of: roots unearthed, hollow logs, massive logs. The first cuts are made in the forest itself, due to the gigantic sizes of some trees found.

Several works of the artist are part of the permanent collection of Inhotim.


Get to know Hugo’s work through the official website.

Here you can follow a little of the process of creating the works.

And for you, what would the world be without sculpture? Tell us in the comments bellow.


Learn more about this unprecedented On•Z project

‘What would the world be without?’ is a documentary series about the eleven most present arts nowadays.

On•Z and Weedoo Studio of Arts and Films have developed this project, which counts on the participation of artists of different nationalities, so that we can understand the importance of the arts, not only in Brazil but worldwide. This series is born with the intention of making us reflect on the influence caused by each art, both in the development of humanity throughout the ages and their impact on the life of each human being, and in the transformation of the world and society as a whole , leaving the question in the air so that each one tries to answer individually: “WHAT WOULD THE WORLD BE WITHOUT?” [the arts].

Produtor, Ator e Diretor (nem sempre nesta ordem). Carinho especial pela arte da gastronomia. :)

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