Lonely Planet Writer

Brazilian street artist is set to break a world record with Olympic mural in Rio de Janeiro

A Brazilian street artist is attempting to break a Guinness World Record for the largest mural by one artist – painting the massive piece on a building in Rio de Janeiro before the start of the Olympic Games.

A man walks past a section of a mural depicting indigenous faces being created by Brazilian graffiti artist Eduardo Kobra and assistants in the revamped Port District on July 20, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The 32,000-square-foot mural, titled 'We Are All One', is being painted to represent cultural diversity across continents and will be completed shortly before the start of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on August 5.
A man walks past a section of a mural depicting indigenous faces being created by Brazilian graffiti artist Eduardo Kobra and assistants in the revamped Port District on July 20, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Image by Mario Tama/Getty Images

The mural is painted in an area that the Olympic website describes as a formerly run-down port area that has been rejuvenated in the lead up to the games.

Graffiti artist Eduardo Kobra has created 3,000-square-metre mural in Rio de Janeiro.
Graffiti artist Eduardo Kobra has created 3,000-square-metre mural in Rio de Janeiro. Image by Rio 2016/Paulo Mumia

Eduardo Kobra is the artist behind the 190-metre long, 15.5 metre tall and 3,000-square-metre mural. The piece has taken about 1,500 litres of coloured paint and 3,500 cans of spray paint. If it is accepted as a Guinness World Record, it will be almost double the size of the existing record-holder.

Kobra and his team use hydraulic lifts to reach the higher parts of the wall.
Kobra and his team use hydraulic lifts to reach the higher parts of the wall. Image by Rio 2016/Paulo Mumia

The mural, which depicts five indigenous people from five continents, will be unveiled on 30 July. Kobra said he has gone to great lengths to accurately and respectfully portray his subjects. “The five characters represent the five continents – the concept was based on the five Olympic Rings,” said Kobra in a Rio 2016 statement. “These are the indigenous people of the world. The idea behind it is that we are all one”.

Kobra works on the detail of one of his subjects.
Kobra works on the detail of one of his subjects. Image by Rio 2016/Paulo Mumia

He, along with four guest artists, has been working on the piece for at least 12 hours a day for two months. Kobra, who lives in São Paulo, has created pieces around the world in cities like London, Tokyo and New York. The new mural can be found on the Olympic Boulevard, a site that stretches about three kilometres and will show live coverage on giant screens, as well as hosting live music, street art performances, fire work displays and food trucks.