Pinacoteca, São Paulo
A world-class museum, Pinacoteca do Estado exhibits a stunning collection of 19th and 20th century Brazilian paintings and sculpture (see attached photos for examples of the sculptures). The interesting edifice itself - Neoclassical style, built entirely in red bricks, was designed by Ramos de Azevedo in 1896 as an educational institution. It wasn't until the 1990s that the building was converted into a museum. In addition to Brazilian art, there are some pieces by European artists and sculptors, such as Rodin. Pinacoteca do Estado is located opposite Estação da Luz. When in São Paulo, this museum is NOT to be missed.
The red brick Neoclassical Estação Pinacoteca was designed by the Paulistano architect/engineer, Ramos de Azevedo in 1914. It served as a warehouse for the Estrada de Ferro Sorocabana (EFS), the company that was responsible for transporting coffee beans to coastal ports. The building later served as a ministry until 2003 when it was taken over by the Sao Paulo Art Museum. As an extension of Pinacoteca de São Paulo, the Estação Pinacoteca now holds temporary art exhibitions.
While MASP was definitely a high point of my sight seeing trip -- the art of Pinacoteca is a MUST to do if you want to feel and see what Sao Paulo's art is really about. Built in a former train station, the building itself is remarkable with wide open spaces and unique use of the building to display several floors of local paintings, sculptures and photographs. While unfortunately most everything is written in Portuqese, the eye candy of art is almost so beautiful that it's self explainatory. I almost feel like after being there that suddenly you grasp better where Sao Paulo's leanings towards beautiful and colorful architecture and design come from.