Vila Itororó is an architectural ensemble created by Francisco de Castro, encompassing more than ten buildings erected in the course of the twentieth-century, for the purposes of residence and leisure. Vila Itororó is located on the banks of the Itororó Valley, on the border between the Liberdade and Bela Vista neighbourhoods, downtown São Paulo. It occupies an area of 6,000 meters square, right in the middle of a block. Vila Itororó became a listed site, by an act of CONPRESP (at municipal level) in 2002, and of CONDEPHAAT (at state level) in 2005. In 2006, it was declared an area of public interest, expropriated and converted into public usage by São Paulo State government and by the City Hall, for cultural purposes. The restoration of Vila Itororó, started in 2013, is carried out by means of a partnership between São Paulo Culture Municipal Secretary and Instituto Pedra.
Temporary Cultural Center
What goes on behind the partitions of a restoration worksite? When is the work really finished? Who defines the future usages of a place that is being restored? Who is the audience who will come to frequent this place? With what resources are public works funded? The opening of Vila Itororó’s restoration worksite is a way of responding to such questions and of pointing to other issues, rendering visible the many decisions that add value to the place being restored and that validate it as heritage.
Visits and Spontaneous Usages
A visit to the patio of houses allows the visitor to share in the state of the restoration process. The tour also describes the development of Vila Itororó, which contains a little of the formation of the city of São Paulo itself. The visitor has access to the many histories that compose the ensemble: its conception as a “house-monument” surrounded by houses for rent, the issue of water as a structuring element in Vila Itororó’s life, the Eden Liberdade Club and the resistance of the families who have lived in the last decades in the site. The public is stimulated to imagine, debate and take part in the discussions regarding the future usages of Vila Itororó, so that the meaning of the preservation of a public heritage site is appropriated collectively.