Sophia's Costumes

Museu Histórico Nacional

Sophia Jobim devoted herself to the study of clothing throughout her life. A highly reputed professor and researcher in the first half of the 20th century, she was an excellent illustrator and produced hundreds of watercolors and drawings, which were used as didactic material in her classes. The National History Museum, holder of the collection bequeathed by Sophia, presents here the allegorical costumes she created.

Maria Sofia Pinheiro Machado Jobim was born in Avaré in São Paulo state on September 19, 1904, daughter of Francisco Antenor Jobim and Quita Pinheiro Machado. She married the engineer Waldemar Magno de Carvalho on September 19, 1927.

She was involved in numerous teaching and artistic activities throughout her life. Through her constant travels around the world, she formed a vast collection of typical costumes, rare pieces, jewelry and shoes, as well as a specialized library with hundreds of rare books on clothing.

In her travels she has attended to many courses and done a lot of research. She attended the Central Art School, the South Kensington Museum and the British Institute in London. She also studied at the Carnavalet in Paris, the Traphagen School of Fashion and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Benaki Museum in Athens, and the Cairo Museum in Egypt.

In the 1940s she began to use the signature Sophia Jobim. The National History Museum also holds postcards, photographs, menus, travel programs, and documents related to her social activities and home life.

Professor, researcher, clothing expert, and museologist, Sophia taught Historical Clothing at the School of Fine Arts of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro between 1949 and 1968.

Sophia's Costumes
The Sophia Jobim collection of the National History Museum has more than 6,000 documents, from which we highlight its iconographic work. Sophia designed costumes for the theater and cinema, for her classes on clothing, and for publications in newspapers and magazines. The allegorical costumes we display here have been subject of several researches. The reason why Sophia has drawn these costumes is still unknown. They could have been used as didactic material or for a play. Or they could have been an exercise for identification of regional clothing attributes. But her ability as an illustrator and her artistic talent is evident in each of the designs and reveals the talented artist she was.

The National History Museum's Sophia Jobim collection is an important source of research for all those interested in clothing. The full collection is available for consultation.

Credits: Story

President of Brazil
Michel Temer

Minister of State for Culture
Roberto Freire

President of Brazilian Museums Institute
Marcelo Mattos Araújo

Director of National History Museum
Paulo Knauss de Mendonça

Administrative Coordinator
Américo David Aurélio

Technical Coordinator
Vania Drummond Bonelli

MHN - 2017

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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