Before Brasília: the Tiradentes Palace

Chamber of Deputies, Brazil

We present in this exhibition some items from Tiradentes Palace, former headquarters of Chamber of Deputies in Rio de Janeiro from 1926 to 1960, when the capital of Brazil was transferred to Brasilia. Tiradentes Palace was specially built to house the Chamber of Deputies, which had been run until then in temporary buildings, unsuited for its proper working. Being aware of the details about the choice of the site, the architectural project, and the way the Palace was built, furnished, and occupied, somehow brings back the process of consolidation of the Brazilian Legislative.

A symbol of the Republic
The Palace was named after the leader of the 18th Century Brazilian revolutionary movement known as Inconfidência Mineira, who was kept prisoner in the Old Jail, the same place that once housed the first Constituent National Assembly and the Chamber of Deputies. The building was going to be demolished so that the Palace could be built in its place.

This canvas was donated to the Chamber of Deputies in 1959 and remained exhibited in the Constitution and Justice Commitee in the Tiradentes Palace. Today the work is in the same Commitee, but at the National Congress Palace in Brasilia.

A Palace built by all and for all
The Chamber of Deputies called on the federation units to collaborate in the construction of the new headquarters with donations that could vary from cash amounts to raw materials and furniture. In this way a synthesis of the Brazilian riches would be in exhibition, emphasizing the national importance of the Palace.

The new palace was richly decorated with ceramics, sculptures, works of art, French mosaic floors, wainscoting and furniture in noble woods and leather of the best quality.

In a true variety of styles, the Tiradentes Palace was decorated with abundant use of Italian velvets, leather and noble woods, such as jacaranda, imbuia and Brazilwood.
Some sections were specially furnished
such as the Presidency and Vice-Presidency in Neo-Manueline style, Noble hall in Francis I style, Gold and Green Halls in Italian Renaissance style, the Secretary in Jacobsen style and the Room of the Committee on Justice with furniture made with 300 years old Brazilwood. 

Detail of the ornamentation that is repeated in the other furniture of the same room.

Credits: Story


Cultural Center of the Chamber of Deputies: Museum Section

Institutional Photography Service
Rui Faquini

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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