Episode #7 of the course “Street artists you should know”
The Brazilian street artist team known as Os Gemeos is two twin brothers from Sao Paulo named Octavio and Gustavo Pandolfo. “Os Gemeos” means “the twins” in Portuguese. As a unique team, they claim to have been working together since birth and that each of them completes the other. They shook up the art world in the 1980s, becoming distinct for their infusion of South American elements with New York graffiti. Influenced by the folklore of Brazil as well as hip-hop culture, Os Gemeos’ art is known around the world for its bright yellow figures, its socio-political statements, and its integration of surrealist and magical realist elements.
Os Gemeos has painted everything from spray paint tags to large murals. They were commissioned by the Brazilian railways to legally paint subway and train cars, and they produced commissioned murals in New York City and Miami. Os Gemeos’ attempt to create a visual language to express the personal language and universe that the two of them share is evident through their fantastic characters.
Os Gemeos’ characters’ bright colors, modern and urban clothing styles, and cartoonish features represent the images that the twins say they share in their dreams, and through which they try to bring a sense of playfulness to public places like schools, businesses, and apartment buildings. The twins have said that a desire to foster growth is one of the strongest things that connect them in their artwork.
The twins often collaborate with other street artists on projects around the world, including the Wynwood Walls, where they worked with Brazilian street artists Nina and Finok. As part of the Dreamland Artist Club 2005 project, they painted one of their largest murals to date, which spans 130 feet across the top of the exit from Coney Island as visitors return to the subway.
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