at street level

I am currently out of Sampa on some personal business, and to kill my nostalgia, as you could say in Portuguese (matar minha saudade), I was looking through pictures and noticed that a ton of the ones I take feature graffiti.

What we lump together under the catch-all ‘graffiti’ is actually differentiated based on intention in Portuguese.  Grafite, for example, is what we would probably call ‘street art’–i.e., there is some thought and artistry behind the piece.  Tagging, however, is known as pichação, and has a very distinct style in Sampa: vertical and spidery.  You can see both in these pictures.

Unfortunately I rarely have my camera when I happen on really good stuff–or, let’s be real, really good stuff is all over the place and I am often in a rush and forget–or else I’d have more to show.  (And in the interest of disclosure, a few of these were taken in Rio.  But not the pichação.)


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