Casa Zuzu


Casa Zuzu Angel

About Instituto Zuzu Angel

Instituto Zuzu Angel, our first fashion NGO, proposed the debate, rekindled Brazilianness and inspired memory

The idea to create a space in memory of Zuzu Angel and her son, Stuart, came in 1976 with her death, when her daughter, Hildegard Angel, began collecting pieces of her fashion.

In 1993, with support from mayor Cesar Maia, the country’s first fashion NGO was founded: The Zuzu Angel Fashion Institute of Rio de Janeiro (Instituto Zuzu Angel de Moda da Cidade do Rio de Janeiro), which was temporarily held at the City Palace, and aimed to spread our fashion, professionals and the memory of the Angels.

Instituto Zuzu Angel - IZA was born under the aegis of the International Advisory Board chaired by American fashion encyclopeditian Eleanor Lambert, whose members include designers such as Valentino, Givenchy, Oscar de la Renta. Its creation boosted fashion in the country, due to its credibility in the industry.

It was responsible for organizing the 1st Fashion Congress of Brazil, founded the Brazilian Fashion Academy, created and coordinated, for 13 years, the 1st Fashion Course in the state of Rio de Janeiro, at Universidade Veiga de Almeida, and later at Universidade Estácio de Sá; it launched the country's 1st Post Graduate Course in Fashion and has always spread the Brazilianness proposed by Zuzu.

It has established agreements for scholarships in France, at Esmod in Paris and at Université de Lyon; in Portugal, at Universidade de Matosinhos. Internships at Atelier Tirelli in Rome.

Casa Zuzu Angel de Memória da Moda do Brasil

Casa Zuzu Angel summarizes the identity of Rio de Janeiro. Starting with its location, at the beginning of the ascent to Alto da Boa Vista where, in the past, the trams would switch tracks and, in the distant past, the donkeys would rest.

In the eclectic residence, architecture styles such as the Manueline coexist harmoniously with the Colonial, Neoclassic, Art Deco and Art Nouveau. Refined craftsmanship produced beautiful stained glass, stucco, ceramic tiles, ceramics, parquets, hardware, fountains, tiled benches, panels and gardens.

So, all of this adds up to a rare beauty that reveals itself to the City. The space serves as scenario and content for the “Memória da Moda do Brasil – Acervo, Restauração e Conservação de Têxteis” (Memory of Brazilian Fashion - Collection, Restoration and Conservation of Textiles) project, a mission arduously defended by Instituto Zuzu Angel de Moda da Cidade do Rio de Janeiro since its foundation in 1993, when it began its activities of keeping the memory of Brazilian fashion alive and raising awareness to its importance as an expression of our identity.

In the mid-1960s, Zuzu began her crusade to create fashion with a Brazilian identity, which led to the acknowledgment of her work abroad during a period in which there were few opportunities to take Brazilian values to the international scenario.

Her historic fashion collection is kept at Casa Zuzu Angel, the iconography and all documentation surrounding her work and her struggle as a willful mother who sought to find her son, Stuart Angel Jones, who had been abducted for his political views.

Other fashion collections make up the house's archive. Among them, important collections such as, Carmen Therezinha Solbiati Mayrink Veiga’s haute couture collection, Casa Canadá’s collection by Mena Fiala, Isabela Capeto’s collection, which has 200 prototypes, Perla Mattison’s collection, Bonita’s collection, children's fashion prototypes, Glorinha Paranaguá's collection with its accessories, and countless others of the same magnitude.

The strong cultural, business and political leadership of Rio de Janeiro is depicted through fashion in the Mosaíco da Vida Brasileira collection, from the 20th and 21st centuries. It is made up of clothes, accessories, objects from characters from several segments of Brazil's society - from the festive elite to work uniforms that belonged to trade union leaders, or intellectuals, politicians, cultural personalities and celebrities in general.

The House is also dedicated to the restoration and conservation of textiles, which is an urgent need in a Brazil that finds itself lacking in terms of heritage. Countless collections of clothing, fabric, tapestry, flags, uniforms are lost due to the lack of technical knowledge on how to preserve them. Training specialized professionals on this craft, who are then able to serve the various institutions in need, will confirm the Carioca’s avant-garde, pioneering and zealous tradition in the national arts.

Welcome to Casa Zuzu Angel!
Hildegard Angel

Mission and values

1 . Disseminate and consolidate, along with the Brazilian public, Zuzu Angel’s memory, be it in life, in work and her struggle, as well as the heroic dimension of the sacrifice of her son, Stuart Angel.

2 . Disseminate, by all means possible, the concept of "fashion with a Brazilian identity" which was advocated by Zuzu Angel, who had as a motto: "Brazilian fashion can only be international if it is legitimate."

3. Value Fashion in the broad scope of its importance to the country.

• As a productive force in our economy, a major employer, especially of female workforce.
• As a traditional autonomous economic activity, ensuring, through dressmaking, that countless Brazilian mothers are able to support their families without being absent from home, educating the children, acting as service providers for the clothing industry and serving “tailor-made” clients.
• As a segment of the visual arts.
• As a record of the Brazilian memory.
• As an expression and behavioral, anthropological and social development record of the people, in all its segments and extracts.

1. Praise and keep the Brazilian fashion creative capacity alive, awake and valued, always preserving the memory and the works of national artists in the industry, and relaying by all possible means and resources, the knowledge and expertise that contribute to this end. 2. Stimulate the freedom to choose, create and actm in fashion art and in the citizenship of the Brazilian people.


Zuzu Angel: “…Brazilian fashion can only reach internacional attention if it is legitimate.”

She was the first to propose the concept of fashion with a Brazilian identity.

Through this very personal work, she paved the way to America. The American fashion encyclopeditian Eleanor Lambert defined her: "She was Christian Lacroix, before Christian Lacroix".

Eugenia Sheppard, Bernardine Morris, June Weir and other important American journalists in the 70s praised her work.

Zuzu Angel created fashion for Hollywood divas such as Joan Crawford and Kim Novak, and was the first to export Brazilian fashion to the US. In 1970, her collection “Fashion and Freedom” took over all the windows of the Bergdorf Goodman department store in 5th Ave.

Among her clients, the first lady of Brazil, before the dictatorship showed its cruelest face. In 1971, after the Air Force killed her son Stuart, whose father, Norman Angel Jones, was American, she presented the "first political protest fashion show", as the world press called it, denouncing the tortures taking place in Brazil.

Today, Zuzu lends her name to schools and streets in several cities of Brazil, and the tunnel where she was killed in Rio de Janeiro in 1976, in an ambush by government agents, a crime that the Brazilian government officially recognized decades after.