Art Seen

This Massive Mural Highlighting The Unity At The Rio Olympics Just Won The Gold Medal In Street Art

"We’re living through a very confusing time with a lot of conflict. I wanted to show that everyone is united, we are all connected."

Every four years, the Olympics bring talented athletes of many ethnicities, nationalities, genders, and backgrounds together. While this unique sense of solidarity is always present in the area, there may be no better place to feel and see this unification than on the streets of Rio de Janeiro.


At least, that's what Eduardo Kobra, a 40-year-old Brazilian graffiti artist, hopes to convey with his new mural titled, "Las Etnias" ("The Ethnicities"). Taking over 30,000 square feet in Rio's port district, the mural bursts with color to create five faces of Indigenous people from five different continents.

"The idea behind it is that we are all one," Kobra told the Rio 2016 Olympics organization. "We're living through a very confusing time with a lot of conflict. I wanted to show that everyone is united, we are all connected." 

Kobra chose the five faces to represent the Olympics' signature rings and an intricate, kaleidoscopic color style to showcase the peaceful coexistence of cultural diversity at this year's games. 

“We’ve all got the same origins, so we have to get along, not only during the Olympic Games, but always,” he added. “We should always stand for world peace.”

It took Kobra 100 gallons of white paint, 400 gallons of colored paint, 3,500 cans of spray paint, and two months to complete his mural. 

The labor of love might even win its own gold medal — by setting a new Guinness World Record for largest mural created by one artist.

If accepted by the Guinness Book of World Records, Kobra's work will nearly double the size of the current record-holding entry by Mexican artist Ernesto Rocha. 

Whether or not "La Etnias" makes world record history, it's already made Olympic history and will continue to do so as an essential piece of Kobra's ongoing project called Olhares da Paz (Visions of Peace). The international street art series features Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King Jr., Gandhi, and others.

(H/T: Bored Panda)


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