124º Anniversary of birth of Salvador Barata Feyo

5 de December, 2023

Born on 5 December 1899 in Angola, Salvador Barata Feyo stood out as a major figure in the second generation of Portuguese modernist sculptors, the author of a vast and diverse body of work.


Salvador Barata Feyo was director of the Soares dos Reis National Museum from 1950 to 1961 and was recognised for his dynamic policy of acquiring works of art. Salvador Barata Feyo’s direction was responsible for the acquisition of works by contemporary artists, who favoured artistic trends that were still being defined.


Salvador Barata Feyo creates a room dedicated to Contemporary Art, reissues the Museum’s summary itinerary, launches the catalogue of the Lapidary collection and the guide to the collection of the Soares dos Reis National Museum.

Sculptor, essayist and pedagogue, it was as a statuary that he became most famous. He entered the Lisbon School of Fine Arts in 1923, studying Painting and Architecture, before studying Sculpture, a course he completed in 1929.


In 1933 he won a scholarship from the Institute of High Culture and travelled to Italy. He took part in the Portuguese World Exhibition in 1940 (statue of King João I) and, in 1949, began teaching at the Porto School of Fine Arts, settling in the city.


Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, his work gained notoriety and recognition, receiving numerous awards, such as the Mestre Manuel Pereira Sculpture Prize (1945 and 1951), the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation’s Grand Prize for Sculpture (1957) or first place in the competition for the monument to Prince Henry the Navigator (Sagres, 1958). He was the author, for example, of the bust of Silva Porto, inaugurated in 1950 in Porto’s S. Lázaro Garden (in the image).


Between 1950 and 1960, Barata Feyo accumulated his artistic and teaching activities with the direction of the Soares dos Reis National Museum, later taking on the post of Assistant Conservator of National Museums and Palaces.


He also devoted himself to drawing and writing, authoring the books A Escultura de Alcobaça (1945) and José Tagarro (1960), and numerous articles on artists in the newspaper O Comércio do Porto. (from a text by Joana Baião)