I was amazed to discover so many high-quality examples of street art in Rio de Janeiro, but I have to admit that Sao Paulo is a lot better. The artists can transform the simplest building into a work of art. The city council new how to take advantage of this situation and they started contracting underground artists that soon transformed the city into a sort of urban museum where you can find paintings in the most unexpected places.
This phenomenon convinced the authorities to place the “hot spots” for street art on touristic maps. This is the first city that I’ve seen where the officials promote, encourage and finance underground art. I hope that someday this type of works will be as appreciated as the works of art displayed in museums. Sao Paulo is making steps for transforming this into reality.
The Vila Madalena neighbourhood is probably the best area for admiring graffitti paintings, but there are some examples on Av. Paulista, for example. The “Beco del Rato” is an example of how a common street can be transformed into a place for imagination and inspiration. Here I met one of the artists from the Kobra group working on their latest work. They also made the portrait of Niemeyer on Paulista.
I like the fact that the artists basically transform the city into a canvas for their ideas. Just like in Rio, most of the times the murals send different messages concerning the environment, political issues or social problems. I believe this way of expression make this city unique. I wish Bucharest could follow this example and start colouring the grey atmosphere.