The Colors of São Paulo: Street Art in Brazil

Graffiti first appeared in Brazil in the streets of São Paulo in the 1970s. After resettling in the (then) poor Paulistano neighborhood of Vila Madalena, students, artists and intellectuals used street art to openly denounce the newly empowered military regime. While Brazil is now proudly democratic – and Vila Madalena is currently one of the trendiest, most sought after neighborhoods in São Paulo – a new generation of street artists paint vibrant critiques of politics, love and society. Walk through some of Vila Madalena’s famous street art in photos.

 

 

Beco do Aprendiz

Named after an organization that once provided educational activities for disadvantaged children, the abandoned Beco do Aprendiz (Learner’s Alley) was rehabilitated in the early 2000s with help from the community (Familia Beco), local artists and the Brazilian government.

 

Street art along Beco do Aprendiz in São Paulo.

 

 

Beco do Batman

The most famous graffiti alley in Brazil, Beco do Batman (Batman’s Alley) was named in the 80s by a group of art students who found a cartoon of the comic book superhero in the alley. A painting by the renowned Brazilian artist Rui Amaral popularized the alley and today Beco do Batman thrives as a haven for artists, student and street art aficionados alike.

 

Street art along Beco do Batman in São Paulo.

 

… And more São Paulo street art

Located near Beco do Batman, A7MA Galeria (pronounced A-sétima) holds free exhibitions of local artists from Vila Madalena. SP Free Walking Tour and Around SP offer guided walking tours of Vila Madalena and the street art scene, while Urban Bike explores the area by cycle. Tours will cover the highlights like Beco do Batman or Escadaria do Patápio (Patápio’s Staircase), but art installations are everywhere in São Paulo. All you have to do is look up.

 

A mural by Brazilian artist Eduardo Kobra in Vila Madalena.