Born: 01 September 1886; Capivari, Brazil
Died: 17 January 1973; São Paulo, Brazil
Art Movement: Modernismo
School or Group: Grupo dos Cinco
Influences Cloud: Fernand Leger
Tarsila do Amaral, also known simply as Tarsila, is considered to be one of the leading Latin American modernist artists, described as "the Brazilian painter who best achieved Brazilian aspirations for nationalistic expression in a modern style." She was a member of the Grupo dos Cinco (Group of Five), which included Anita Malfatti, Menotti Del Picchia, Mário de Andrade, and Oswald de Andrade.
Tarsila was born in the city of Capivari, part of the interior of São Paulo, Brazil, to a wealthy family who were coffee growers and landowners. Her family's position provided her a life of privilege. Although women of privilege were not expected to seek higher education, her parents supported her educational and artistic pursuits. During her teens, Tarsila and her family traveled to Barcelona, where she attended school and first exhibited her interest in art by copying images seen in the school's collections.
Beginning in 1916, Tarsila studied sculpture, drawing and painting. The Brazilian art world was conservative, and travels to Europe provided students with a broader education in the areas of art, culture, and society. At this time, her influences and art remained conservative.