Officially registered in 1978, Ema Gordon Klabin Cultural Foundation is a nonprofit organization that is declared a federal public resource and has the objective of promoting and divulging activities of a cultural, artistic and scientific nature, in addition to transforming the residence of Ema Gordon Klabin into a museum open to the public.
Work on cataloging the collection began in 1997 – three years after Ema Klabin passed – and allowed for a deep comprehension of the items and her history. To promote this collection, in addition to the visits by the general public, the Ema Gordon Klabin Cultural Foundation has loaned its works to a wide variety of exhibitions, in Brazil and in Europe.
The building that houses the Foundation is located on rua Portugal, in the city of São Paulo. The grounds, measuring almost 4,000 m², is part of the Jardim Europa luxury allotment designed by architect and engineer Hipólito Pujol Jr at the end of the 1920s, in the same mold as that of British garden cities, of which the neighboring Jardim América, designed by British master planner Barry Parker, is also an example. Nearby are two other cultural institutions, MUBE (the Brazilian Museum of Sculpture) and MIS (the Museum of Sound and Image).
The house, with a built area of approximately 900 m², was painstakingly designed and built by Alfredo Ernesto Becker, and architect and engineer, in the middle of the 1950s, to house the collection carefully gathered by Ema Klabin. There is no defined style, as was common with other residences at the time, with classical elements – such as the full arches over the external doors and windows – blending with modern ones, most notably in the materials used for the finishes. Décor was the responsibility of Terri Della Stuffa, as was the distribution and adaptation of the pieces throughout the spaces in the house.