Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro

Carnaval Interativo, Pimpolhos Samba School

The programme will work to empower samba culture within the decaying port of Rio de Janeiro and in the process counter the real-estate pressures that are threatening to displace Carnival float fabrication from its current location near the Sambodromo. Based at the Pimpolhos Samba School port warehouse, the workshop will collaborate with local float designers and fabricators to invent a new type of interactive Carnival float that will redefine the relationship between performers and spectators. Knowledge and expertise from local artisans will be combined with computational design techniques, such as Grasshopper associative design, processing and Arduino. 

A branch of the Grande Rio Escola de Samba, Pimpolhos is a children’s Carnival School which promotes the building of floats and costumes inspired by contemporary art and the creative use of recycled materials. The Visiting School will produce one of their floats for the 2012 Carnival, combining the theme of little Africa in the Port Area with an appeal to government officials to integrate current float fabrication warehouses into their development proposals as an economically valuable cultural attraction. 

The workshop will incorporate Carnival float fabrication techniques, re-purposed Carnival float pieces and other found objects. At the same time it will be supported by new digital fabrication processes such as CNC and laser-cutting, which will be used to make elements such as moulds for the local builders’ casting techniques. The final phase will be the parading of the float during Carnival!


The deadline for applications is TBC. All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required. After payment of fees, the AA can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.


The AA Visiting School requires a fee of £695 per participant, which includes a £50 Visiting Membership made payable online. If you are already a member, the total fee will be reduced automatically by £50 by the online payment system. Fees do not include flights. Accommodation during the workshop is not provided, but advice can be given for nearby affordable hotels. Fees are non refundable.
Brazilian applicants may pay the fee into a Brazilian bank account. Please contact the Visiting School Coordinator for further details.

The workshop is open to architecture and design students and professionals worldwide.


Sponsor rio de janeiro 1   Sponsor rio de janeiro 2


Programme Directors
Anne Save de Beaurecueil
Franklin Lee

Visiting School Director

Christopher Pierce

T +44 20 7887 4014
F +44 20 7414 0782

Links & Downloads

PDF Application Form

Publicity card

Programme site


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Visiting School Prospectus


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