Located in the historical center of Rio de Janeiro in an eclectic architecture building designed in 1908 by the architect Adolfo Morales de los Rios to host the National School of Fine Arts, heir of the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts, the National Museum of Fine Arts / Ibram / MinC was built during the urban upgrades carried out by Mayor Pereira Passos in what it was then the Federal Capital of the country.
Created officially in 1937 by the decree of President Getúlio Vargas, it occupies an area of 18,000 m2 and is the most important art museum in the country. It brings together a collection of seventy thousand items among paintings, drawings, engravings, sculptures, objects, documents and books, constituting itself as a radiating center of knowledge and dissemination of Brazilian art. The bicentennial Collection of the National Museum of Fine Arts originated from three distinct sets of works: the paintings brought by Joaquim Lebreton, head of the French Artistic Mission, who arrived in Rio de Janeiro in 1816; the works belonging to or produced here by members of the Mission, among them Nicolas-Antoine Taunay, Jean-Batiste Debret, Grandjean de Montigny, Charles Pradier and the Ferrez brothers; and the pieces of the Collection D. João VI, left by him in Brazil when returning to Portugal in 1821. These collections have been enriched by important donations and acquisitions, such as the bust of Antínoo, a rare marble archaeological piece donated by the Empress D. Teresa Cristina to the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts in 1880.