Dutch artists Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn

Painting a Favela: The Kickstarter Aiming for a Million Dollars

With the approach of the Brazil World Cup and associated television coverage, barely a day goes by without a documentary or magazine feature on the Favela’s. Ramshackle buildings built with corrugated metal and rock-hard resolve. Sprawling, real life houses of cards balanced precariously and domino-like in and around the urban parts of many of Brazil’s major cities. Eleven million people (6%) of Brazil’s population live in these slums – that’s more than the entire population of Denmark. With large areas controlled by gangs, poverty rife and clean water difficult to come by, the Favela communities are certainly deserving of a little colour in their lives.

This is where the ‘Painting a Favela’ project comes in.  Started in 2005 by Dutch duo Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn they describe the project as:

“The main idea is for the project to function as a means of urban beautification and to act as a catalyst for positive social change, whilst offering the inhabitants an opportunity to earn an education and income. “

Kickstarter Project

Using Kickstarter, they reached their minimum target of $100,000 dollars in October 2013, allowing them to return to the Favelas in Rio de Janeiro to paint more areas. Their ultimate aim, they say, is to raise $1 million in order to paint every home in every Favela in Rio. A huge target but they are 10% of the way there and with the eyes of the world on Rio during the 2014 World Cup, awareness of this fantastic idea can only grow.

Santa Teresa with Christ the Redeemer in the background

Santa Teresa neighbourhood and favela with Christ The Redeemer in background

Rio’s Santa Teresa neighbourhood and favela with Christ The Redeemer in background

 Rocinha – the largest hill Favela in Rio

Rocinha - the largest hill Favela in Rio

Rocinha – the largest hill Favela in Rio

 Previous Projects

 Boy with Kite in 2006

The design for the first project was chosen together with local people. It depicts a boy playing with a kite, a symbol for every child in Brazil’s favela’s.

Boy with Kite - 2006  in Vila Cruseiro

Boy with Kite – 2006 in Vila Cruseiro

Rio Cruzeiro in 2008 – Vila Cruzeiro

This project covered a complete street in Vila Cruzeiro. Giant slabs of concrete protected the hill from mudslides during the rainy season and – resembling a river of concrete, inspired Haas & Hahn to paint it. The Japanese design, complete with Koi carp, was made by master tattoo artist Rob Admiraal. It took more than 8 months to complete the 7000 square meter design and can even be seen on Google earth!

RIO CRUZEIRO - 2008 - VILA CRUZEIRO

Rio Cruzeiro in 2008 – Vila Cruzeiro

Praca Cantao from 2010 in Santa Marta

A group of 25 local youths were trained and hired and in just a little over a month the team painted a complete square in Santa Marta, completely transforming the image of the favela – it’s now a famous tourist attraction!

Praca Cantao from 2010 in Santa Marta

Praca Cantao from 2010 in Santa Marta

You can learn more about the Favela Painting project here or visit their Kickstarter fundraising page here

 



The Chromologist

About

The Chromologist is a colour whisperer. He understands and knows them better than they know themselves, translating their pleas to be used beautifully for humankind. It's unknown from whence he came. Some say the fraction of space between a prism and a spectrum, others say he toiled in the fabled colour mines of Svalbard for years untold, deep underground, speaking only to the reds and blues, cerises and aquas, bronze and golds...


The Chromologist 2017 | Farrow & Ball

The Chromologist