Brazil

Painting the Town, One Wall at a Time

Julia Schweiss is a student at the University of South Carolina and an ISA Photo Blogger. She is currently studying abroad with ISA in Florianopolis, Brazil

After being in Florianópolis for over a month, I can say with great certainty that my favorite thing about Brazil is the expressiveness of its people. From the colorful buildings, to the samba dancing, to the large tattoos that can be seen on the majority of Brazilians, these people know how to express themselves, and they know how to keep things vibrant and colorful.

Even the electric boxes here are painted to blend in with nature.

Even the electric boxes here are painted to blend in with nature.

The most apparent form of expression that I have noticed throughout Brazil, and in Floripa specifically, is the graffiti that covers every highway, open wall, sidewalk, and even lamppost. It doesn’t take an art major to know that these creations are not simply tags on walls or a way for citizens to make their mark—they are expressing themselves and sharing their artistry with the world for all to see and enjoy, adding life and beauty to an already beautiful country.

I walk past this beautiful mermaid every day on my way home, always wondering who the artist is.

I walk past this beautiful mermaid every day on my way home, always wondering who the artist is.

Just on my walk to school each day, I pass a bright blue chameleon, a mermaid, and a sign that says “Força Dilma”, representing Brazilians’ current unrest with their nation’s president, Dilma Rousseff. Many of these works, such as the chameleons, can be seen on different walls and buildings all over the city, adding a sense of unity and begging you to wonder who the artist is, and what the significance of his/her work could possibly be. Not only has the graffiti in Florianópolis given me a greater appreciation for art as a form of expression and beauty; it has also given me a love and understanding of the liveliness and resilience of the Brazilian culture. It has helped me to realize that even in the face of adversity, Brazilians will find a way to add a splash of color.

These chameleons riddle the city, even reviving old abandoned buildings to make them look alive again

These chameleons riddle the city, even reviving old abandoned buildings to make them look alive again

So far, I've counted 23 chameleons scattered around the island

So far, I’ve counted 23 chameleons scattered around the island

The world awaits…discover it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s