Casa das Histórias Paula Rego, Cascais
The Casa das Histórias Paula Rego is an art museum in Cascais, Portugal. The iconic building of the museum was designed by Portuguese architect Eduardo Souto de Moura.
Opened in 2009 in Cascais, a seaside municipality in the Lisbon District area, the museum was built primarily to showcase the work of Portuguese-born British artist and women’s rights activist Paula Rego (b. 1935 in Lisbon).
Above: exterior view of the Casa das Histórias Paula Rego in Cascais, photo © Luís Ferreira Alves.
Souto de Moura’s building
The building designed by Souto de Moura consists of several red-colored concrete volumes, including two iconic 17-meter / 58-foot high pyramids that flank the main entrance on the southeast corner of the Casa das Histórias Paula Rego and contain the museum’s cafe and shop.
The building sits in the middle of a beautiful park, framed by large Eucalyptus trees. A marble-paved path cuts diagonally across the site reaching the museum’s entrance from the south.
Inside, the Casa das Histórias Paula Rego houses a foyer, a temporary exhibition hall, and six galleries for the permanent exhibition, four of which arranged around a central courtyard, together with administration offices dock, workshops, storerooms, and a 200-seat auditorium.
Contrasting with the intense earthy deep-red color of the exterior, the museum’s interiors are almost completely white, thus creating a neutral and intimate background for the intense works of Paula Rego.
Ground-floor plan, elevations, and sections.
The two “chimneys” contain the cafe and book shop of the museum.
Views of one of the permanent exhibition rooms and of the temporary exhibition hall. Photos © Luís Ferreira Alves.
Collection, permanent exhibition, and program of activities
The collection of the Casa das Histórias Paula Rego comprises works – paintings, drawings, pastels, and etchings – made by renowned Portuguese artist and women’s rights activist Paula Rego from the early 1960s to the present day, as well as work by her husband, British painter Victor Willing (1928-1988).
Born in Lisbon, Paula Rego moved to London when she was sixteen and has lived and worked in Britain since.
Rego’s works have evolved over time from being strongly influenced by Surrealism and, later, by semi-abstract painting, to very personal works, mostly pastels, that, since the early 1990s, combine disquieting figures and socially conscious themes with a masterful technique openly influenced by South-European old masters like Diego Velasquez, such as in Rego’s famous Dog Women series.
A selection of works from the collection, which consists of about 600 pieces, is displayed in the museum’s permanent exhibition.
The program of activities and events of the Casa das Histórias Paula Rego includes special exhibitions, guided tours, workshops, talks, and conferences.
Paula Rego, Order has been Established…, 1960, oil on paper.
Paula Rego, Rigoletto, 1983, acrylic on paper.
Paula Rego, The Company of Women, 1997, pastel on paper.
Images courtesy of Casa das Histórias Paula Rego, and Souto de Moura Arquitectos.
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copyright Inexhibit 2021 - ISSN: 2283-5474