Inhotim. Is it worth the trip?

No. Next question.

Wha? You want to know more? Sure, whatever. It’s been a while since I wrote an opionated text about art that would make people angry and pointing the finger at the screen.

Here’s the deal: Inhotim is an open air art gallery. A museum. Stylish, beautiful, full of scenery, but a museum. And one about contemporary art to boot. I personally love that place and want to go back whenever I get the chance, but at the risk of sounding elitist, it’s not for everyone.

And I don’t say that in the sense of thinking I’m intellectually superior to everyone (although… No. Stop. Get a grip, man), but thinking about the whole context. Inhotim is expensive, specially if you’re from Brazil. A can of water is six reais. Their buffet costs around 50 reais, less if you eat almost nothing. The entrance fee is 40 reais for students, 80 if you use internal transport (and believe me, you will want to use internal transport. Unless you’re used to walk up and down hills). Per day. And you won’t be able to see everything in one day, because the place is huge.

Of course, everything there is gorgeous: the modern buildings strategically placed in front of a water mirror, the bridge positioned in the perfect place to take photos, the impeccable landscaping. But all of this is punctuated, or tainted depending on your opinion, by works of contemporary art.

And that’s the thing. If you don’t like contemporary art, if you think it’s silly to see a ceiling full of styrofoam balls, or a wall with half a bus hangin on, or a colorful Volkswagen Beetle posing as a work of art, or if you don’t have the slightest openness to works of contemporary art, or even works of art in general, all of this will bother you and even irritate, ruining what would be a walk in pretty a botanical garden. You will be furious, thinking that you paid 200 reais per person to see a room full of broken glass on the floor.

Look, I’m not saying you need to like it, but you do need to acknowledge it. I myself don’t like several of the works there (the bus on the wall, for example), I love others (Desvio para o vermelho!), and I’m indifferent to some. But I know that’s part of the experience, and that’s why I go there.

Now, spending a lot of money to being pissed off while you walk will ruin your wallet, your mood, and everyone’s trip, just to say that you visited Inhotim. So save your money and go to the beach. You’ll enjoy it much more and you won’t need to complain about that hole in the ground being an art piece.