Monday, December 21, 2009

Brazil's 102-year-old architect spends 'crap' birthday

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazil's most famous architect, Oscar Niemeyer, celebrated his 102nd birthday Tuesday in typical fashion: at work on projects rather than pondering his supercentennial age.

"Turning 102 is crap, and there is nothing to commemorate," he told AFP.

Niemeyer, who was born in 1907 in Rio de Janeiro, where he still lives, is famed for designing some of Brazil's most distinctive buildings, among them Rio's Sambodrome and the nearby Niteroi Contemporary Art Museum, and many of the futuristic edifices of the capital Brasilia.
His inspiration for the domes, curves and sweeping lines that make up his style he has said is "the body of the Brazilian woman."

Even in old age, Niemeyer continues to flaunt his love of life. He still enjoys his cigars -- "an old habit that I cultivate with much gusto." Four years ago, at age 98 and a widower, he married his 60-year-old secretary.



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