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Inhotim in Brumadinho, Brazil: Three reasons to visit

Even if you are so ridiculously well travelled, you’re running out of stamp space on your passport, there is no way you’ve ever seen anything like this incredible space where art meets nature…

City: Brumadinho, near Belo Horizonte

What: See

Where: Instituto Inhotim Contemporary Art Centre & Botanical Garden  

Rua B, 20, 35460 000 / 55 31 3571 9700

Three reasons we loved it:

1. The Space: Words cannot describe this amazing place (although obviously I’m going to make them try). One minute visitors can find themselves wandering through lush botanical gardens, the next inside a vast, industrial-esque area being transported elsewhere by fully immersive art installations. If you’re not wowed by the abundant natural wonders residing within Inhotim, be in awe of some seriously thought-provoking work.

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2. The Forty Part Motet: Golf carts take visitors between huge pavilions, each housing the work of one artist. A highlight for me was the “Forty Part Motet” (1957) by Janet Cardiff, where a sound installation of 40 audio speakers represents the male voices of the Salisbury Cathedral Choir. Visitors can walk among the circle of speakers to listen to each of the different voices individually, or sit in the centre of the echoing white space to take in the 14 minute “Spem in Alium” by Thomas Tallis (1575) for an almost spiritual experience.

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3. The Location: There is no doubt the focus of Inhotim is its environment, located amid a forest area that is a remnant of the Atlantic Rainforest and the Brazilian Savanna. These are two of the richest environments in terms of biodiversity, and at the same time, two of the most endangered. Doug Aitken’s “Sonic Pavillion” (2009), is a site-specific piece of work whereby a 200-metre deep well in the ground captures the sound of the earth. Depending on what time visitors go the earth’s voice varies from a light whirring, to a loud, almost unbearable sound.

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