Arts + Culture

The Anti-World Cup Graffiti Popping Up On Brazilian Streets

Look at our collection of anti-world cup and anti-FIFA graffiti protesting the Brazil 2014 World Cup.

With the 2014 World Cup taking place in less than two weeks, anti-government sentiment among the Brazilian people has reached a fever pitch.  The glaring need for social infrastructure in the education, healthcare and transportation sectors of Brazil has been supplanted in the name of giving a facelift to the 12 cities where matches are to be held. The Brazilian taxpayers’ fear of being stuck with the World Cup's $11 billion price tag has been realized most noticeably with an increase in the cost of living since winning the hosting bid in 2007.


In addition to uncompleted development projects, events surrounding Brazil 2014 have been marred by the Brazilian government’s gross mismanagement of funds meant for urban redevelopment (which has been questioned time  and again) , limitations placed on small businesses in favor of corporate sponsors like Coke and McDonalds, the marginalization of Afro-Brazilianspolice brutality and forceful evictions in an increasingly overpriced housing market that has left thousands of Brazilians, including indigenous communities in limbo.

In protest, Brazilians have utilized multiple means of social activism and organizing to ensure that their discontent with the government’s extravagance does not go unnoticed — political graffiti being one of them. Street artists have taken the realities of the Brazilian people in the run up to the World Cup and transformed them into compelling images which cannot be ignored by the thousands of tourists who will soon be descending on their country. Click through the gallery above for a sampling of a few of the murals that sum up the popular feelings of Brazilians towards the World Cup.

[All images via r/graffiti]

Interview

Angelique Kidjo Writes a Love Letter to 'Mother Nature'

We talk to the Beninese musical icon about assembling her new album on Zoom and the "bigger than COVID-19" threat that lies ahead!

The kind of infectious energy that lives within Angelique Kidjo can't be contained by Zoom. Her zest for life reaches out far beyond any screen, and burns stronger than the fastest internet connection.

"I can't wait until we're in person hugging again," she enthuses soon after joining our Zoom meeting to discuss her latest album Mother Nature. Having been on the receiving end of a hug from the four-time Grammy-winning singer, I know exactly what I'm missing out on. "Me too," I say, as I wrap my arms around my laptop, my face squishing the screen. "No, no," she retorts. "I don't want that. You keep it. I want the real deal," she chuckles, her full-bodied trademark laughter lovingly admonishing me.

The Benin-born musician is preparing to release Mother Nature, a collection of songs reflecting our one Earth, and cementing her status as an African musical icon. Collaborating with the likes of Yemi Alade, Mr Eazi, Burna Boy, Sampa the Great, Shungudzo and more, Kidjo's crossing through time and space, over age and country through Mother Nature's themes and stories. Each track is infused with a vigor that only she possesses — the kind that shares a significant message even as the listener is called to just dance or sing along.

Below, Angelique Kidjo reminisces about making the album, and chats us through her hopes and dreams for it!

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