The International Association of Art Critics, based in Paris, was founded in 1948 as an NGO, linked to UNESCO. Reynaldo dos Santos was left in charge of the Portuguese Section, and he invited Luís Reis Santos to organise it. These two historians invited sculptor Diogo de Macedo, Armando Vieira and Adriano de Gusmão to join the Portuguese Section.

In March 1967, José Augusto França and Rui Mário Gonçalves organised the First Congress of Portuguese Art Critics. At this congress, having researched the Portuguese context, they proposed a restructuring of the Portuguese Section to the dozens of people who attended it, and this restructuring was approved. From 1968 onwards, the Portuguese Section was presided by (in some cases, for more than one term): José Augusto França, Rui Mário Gonçalves, Salette Tavares, Carlos Duarte, Fernando Pernes, Sílvia Chicó, Fernando de Azevedo, Pedro Vieira de Almeida, João Pinharanda, Manuel Graça Dias and Delfim Sardo. The current president is João Silvério.

AICA’s Portuguese Section organised two very prestigious international congresses in 1976 and 1986. The purpose of AICA is to support and promote art criticism as a discipline. Among other applications, AICA is present as a jury in selecting and awarding art in various ways. From 1968 to 1972, in partnership with the company SOQUIL, AICA awarded the best exhibitions held in Lisbon. From 1981, AICA began considering the entire country, and once a year it selects a visual artist and an architect worthy of a national award, funded by the Ministry of Culture. The awarded artists must have a substantial portfolio at the time when they are issued the award, and they will usually have completed some form of cultural event in the previous year, whether it be holding an exhibition, or completing a work in a public space, for instance. Thus, as well as benefitting and recognising the artist, the AICA/MC Award encourages the best artists to exhibit their work publicly, and it helps to make their work accessible the greater public.

In 2009, AICA’s Portuguese Section created an Art Criticism award in partnership with Parque Expo: the AICA/Parque EXPO Award for art criticism, with a monetary value similar to the AICA/MC Award. This award aims to promote visual art criticism and theory.

Rui Mário Gonçalves Lisbon, 28 March 2006 Revised on 19 march 2015


Ana Tostões – president Architect, architecture critic and historian. President of Docomomo International and Editor of the Docomomo Journal (www.docomomo.com). Full Professor at IST-University of Lisbon, where she coordinates the Architectural Area. She has a degree in Architecture (ESBAL, 1982), a master’s degree in History of Art (UNL, 1994), with a thesis entitled Os Verdes Anos na Arquitectura Portuguesa dos Anos 50 (FAUP Edições, 1997) and a holds a PhD (IST-UL, 2003) on culture and technology in Modern Architecture (Idade Maior, FAUP Edições, 2015), awarded with the X Bienal Ibero-Americana de Arquitectura y Urbanismo Prize 2016.

She has been invited professor at multiple universities worldwide, her research field is the Critical History and Theory of Modern Movement Architecture, focusing on the relationship between European, Asian, African and American cultures. She has published 15 books and 95 essays, curated 10 exhibitions, participated in juries, scientific committees and gave lectures in universities worldwide. She coordinated the research project Exchanging World Visions focused on the Sub-Sahara African architecture during the Modern Movement period which publication was awarded with the Gulbenkian Prize 2014. As principal researcher for the “Heal and Care” project focused on the study of health equipment built in Portugal in the 20th century, she edited the book Cure & Care, architecture and health (2020).

Sandra Vieira Jürgens – vice-president Art critic and curator, with a PhD in Art History. She currently teaches and coordinates the Postgraduate Programme in Curatorship at the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities [NOVA FCSH] and the BA in Photography and Visual Culture at IADE – Faculty of Design, Technology and Communication [Universidade Europeia]. Research Fellow at Instituto de História da Arte [IHA, NOVA FCSH], her research projects, essays and articles cover topics related to artists-curators, practices of exhibition-making, independent spaces, and cultural and art criticism. She is initiator and artistic director of Wrong Wrong Magazine (www.wrongwrong.net) and of RAUM: online artist residencies project (www.raum.pt). More information: www.sandravieirajurgens.com

Pedro Baia – secretary João Belo Rodeia – treasurer Catarina Rosendo – member of the board

Presidents of PS/AICA:

  • 1955-1968 – Luís Reis Santos
  • 1969-1971 – José-Augusto França
  • 1971-1973 – Rui Mário Gonçalves
  • 1974-1976 – Salette Tavares
  • 1977-1980 – Carlos Duarte
  • 1980-1980 – Pedro Vieira de Almeida
  • 1981-1983 – Fernando Pernes
  • 1984-1988 – Silvia Chicó
  • 1988-1995 – Fernando de Azevedo
  • 1995-1998 – Silvia Chicó
  • 1998-2001 – Rui Mário Gonçalves
  • 2002-2004 – Carlos Duarte
  • 2004-2007 – João Pinharanda
  • 2008-2012 – Manuel Graça Dias
  • 2012-2015 – Delfim Sardo
  • 2015-João Silvério
  • 2015-2018 – Paulo Pires do Vale
  • 2018-2021 – Ricardo Carvalho
  • 2021-Ana Tostões


  1. The Portuguese Section of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) is based on the following statutes, determined in accordance with AICA’s head office, an international non-governmental association based in Paris.
  2. As a National Section of this International Association, the Portuguese Section has a set of statutes which reflect those of the head office. These statutes are reviewed and updated according to the International AICA Statutes. Any amendment needs to be formally approved by AICA’s Administrative Council.
  3. The Portuguese Section is formed by art critics whose profession is art review in any of the media, teaching, or curating exhibitions. The Section members – who are either of Portuguese nationality and/or resident in Portugal and working in the country – are selected according to the requirements listed in Article II of this document.
  4. The aims of the Portuguese Section are:
    1. To promote art criticism as a subject and to contribute to its methodology
    2. To promote the Members’ ethical and professional interests and to defend their rights
    3. To maintain an active national and international network using existing means of communication and to promote face-to-face meetings between its members
    4. To contribute to the cross-cultural understanding of visual and aesthetic arts
    5. To promote professional relationships that transcend political, geographical, ethnic, economic and religious boundaries
    6. To defend impartially freedom of speech and thought, and to oppose all forms of arbitrary censorship.


  1. The Section comprises Individual Members, and is open to receiving new members. There is no limit to the number of members.
  2. To be eligible, candidates must produce evidence of sustained activity over the previous three years, in the following areas: – Daily/periodical press, or broadcasting on radio, TV or video, or in the electronic media – Publication of works of art history, aesthetics or criticism – Teaching of art criticism, art history, aesthetics, curating, or art – Curatorial work and analysis for educational or scholarly ends, including the production of scholarly or critical texts for museums or galleries, whose principal aim is not essentially commercial
  3. Candidates are elected by secret ballot. There needs to be an absolute majority for a candidate to be elected. The status of Associate Member is provisional, until it can be ratified by AICA’s General Assembly, acting on behalf of the Association’s Electoral and Membership Commission and Administrative Council.
  4. Membership status is forfeited in the following cases: – by resignation – by non-payment of the membership fee for two consecutive years – by expulsion at a General Assembly of AICA, if so recommended by the Administrative Council, on grounds of gross misconduct.


  1. The Portuguese Section is headed by the Executive Board, comprising: – a President – one or more Vice-Presidents – a Secretary, who is in charge of administrative functions and takes the minutes of meetings – a Treasurer, who collects dues and is responsible for remittances to the Association’s Head Office – other officials, with or without titles, as required by the Section
  2. The members of the Executive Board are elected annually by secret ballot at the General Assembly, by an absolute majority of votes of the members present.
  3. No member of the Section can serve as President, Secretary-General or Treasurer for more than nine years, either consecutively or intermittently, whether s/he has been re-elected at regular intervals (e.g. 3 + 3 + 3 years), or re-elected by annual voting.
  4. The President of the Section convenes the Meetings, and the President of the General Assembly presides over the Meetings and is responsible for the Acts of the Association. The President of the Section must play a dynamic part in the Section and ensure its smooth functioning.


  1. All Members of the Association will be summoned to an Annual General Meeting.
  2. An Extraordinary General Meeting may be held at the request of the President, the majority of the Executive Board, or a quarter of the paid-up members of the Association.
  3. The members of the Executive Board are elected by the Members present at the Annual General Meeting. At this meeting, the President delivers his/her report on the Association’s activity over the three years of presidency. The members responsible for other specific activities will also deliver their reports.
  4. New members are elected by secret ballot, by the Members present at the Annual General Meeting.
  5. The Members present at the Annual General Meeting set the amount of the following year’s dues. This includes the amount payable by the Section Members to the International Association.
  6. Outside the Annual General Meeting and the Extraordinary General Meetings, the Association might hold additional meetings to which all Members are invited.


  1. The Section’s financial resources can be made up of: – The fees paid by the Associate Members – Legally authorised income generated from the Section’s initiatives – Any given subsidies conferred to the Section
  2. The payment of the membership fees set at the Annual General Meeting is compulsory.


  1. The Executive Board can propose modifications to the National Regulations. All such proposals must be forwarded, in writing, to all members of the Board at least one month prior to the Annual General Meeting, at which they are to be discussed and voted upon. All modifications to the Statutes must be approved by a two thirds majority of the meeting attendants who are eligible to vote.
  2. The Members of the Section may initiate proposals themselves to modify the Statutes. In order to succeed, any such proposal must receive the support of two thirds of the Members who are present and eligible to vote, on two successive occasions.


  1. The Section may be dissolved, following a motion presented by the Executive Board or by other Associate Members at the Annual General Meeting and a vote in favour of this by at least three quarters of the Members present at that meeting.
  2. In case of dissolution, the assets of the Section will be distributed, in accordance with the law, to an organisation whose aims are allied to, or compatible with, those of the Association.


In accordance with the Portuguese legislation which the Associations abide by, AICA’s Portuguese Section comprises an Executive Board, an Audit Committee, a General Meeting Committee and a General Meeting.

Updated on 23 April 2006.



approved at the General Assembly meeting of 15th February 2005

I – Member Admission

  1. The number of society members and affiliates is unlimited.
  2. Any authors who fulfil the pre-requisites established at the meeting of 8th October 1969, and compliant with minute number 8, transcribed below, are eligible for admission:”Any authors who devote an important part of their professional activity to contemporary art criticism or history, who can demonstrate having had adequate and sufficient cultural instruction under commonly accepted ethical principles, and falling into one or more of the following categories: a) authors of books or monographs on contemporary art aesthetics, sociology or history, published at least two years ago; b) regular contributors in the media, having published articles or essays on contemporary art at least two years ago; c) regular exhibition commentators on written or spoken media, at least two years ago; d) people responsible for cultural institutions who organise artistic activities on contemporary art, and who have published works; e) Art History teachers who regularly organise courses on contemporary art, and who have published works. - Admission takes place at the General Assembly at the beginning of each year, after approval by majority of votes by the Application Committee. The Assembly will decide each time whether it is convenient to conduct the voting by secret ballot or by show of hands. - The Application Committee will consist of the current Executive Board and another two people elected at the Assembly.
  3. Admission is conducted by processing the applications presented to the Board during the previous year.
  4. In addition, occasionally board members may suggest the admission of certain authors. The Application Committee will then vote on their admission, and contact these authors that the Portuguese Section would like to count amongst its members.
  5. New members are admitted at General Assembly. The statutory rule which states that any new admission must be approved by an absolute majority of votes, while desirable, will not always be able to be strictly observed.The transition to society member is decided by the board responsible for presenting the list of names, along with their respective biographical notes, to the Bureau International.The first payment due by society members refers to the year following that of their admission, as stated in point 4 of article X of the current International AICA regulations. However, this payment may be made in the year of admission if the national section so decides. AICA’s Portuguese Section opted for the latter alternative.
  6. Members are required to pay the fee determined by AICA’s general regulations. Their rights as members (use of membership card, attending board meetings, voting, etc.) are dependent on this payment. Membership status will cease in the event of failure to pay the fee for two consecutive years. Readmission will require a new application.

II – General Assembly

The General Assembly consists of all members of the Section. The General Assembly meets once a year, during the first quarter, with the following agenda: a) reading, discussing and deliberating on the report and accounts of the previous Executive Board; b) admission of new members; c) election of the Executive Board; d) any other business. An Extraordinary General Assembly Meeting may be requested within 15 days by a number of associated members equivalent to an absolute majority.

III – Directorate

  • The Directorate consists of the General Assembly Table and the Executive Board.
  • The General Assembly Table consists of a President and a Secretary.
  • The appointed President will be the eldest among the attending members, and the Secretary will be the youngest.
  • The Executive Board consists of a President, a Vice-President, a Secretary and a Treasurer.
  • The role of Treasurer can be combined with any of the other roles.
  • The Portuguese Section contains a Finance Council that ensures the Treasury responsibilities.
  • The election of the Executive Board takes place once a year at the General Assembly, by absolute majority of votes. The Assembly will decide each time whether it is necessary to use secret ballot.
  • The vote is conducted separately for each role in the order outlined above.
  • The elected President may subsequently put to vote the names of the remaining members of the board.
  • The vote is conducted by secret ballot.
  • In special cases, postal voting may be allowed.
  • These roles may only be held by society members.
  • In exceptional cases, the secretary role may be held by an associate member.
  • The members of the Executive Board may be re-elected to the same roles up to nine consecutive years.
  • The structure of the Directorate may change according to the development of the Portuguese Section, by absolute majority, whenever the General Assembly deems necessary to do so.
  • At the end of his/her term, both the Executive President and the Treasurer are required to present a report of his/her performance.

IV – Executive Board meetings

  • The Executive Board holds regular meetings whenever they are deemed necessary.
  • All members are entitled to participate in these meetings.
  • The meetings are held at the Sociedade Nacional de Belas Artes.

V – Sources of Revenue

  1. The Portuguese Section’s sources of revenue consist of:
  • subsidies obtained by the Executive Board;
  • a 10% commission on any income generated by the members for functions performed when representing the Portuguese Section (eg. when forming part of a jury);
  • any other income resulting from activities promoted by the Portuguese Section.
  1. Travel subsidies are exempt from the commission mentioned in b) in the previous paragraph.

VI – General comments

In general terms, and on any aspect not mentioned in these internal regulations, the Portuguese Section follows the International AICA’s statutes and its regulations.