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From Brazil with love – a Favela connection with London

Brazilian artist, Ricardo Alves da Silva Miranda, also known by his artist name Ricardo Negro, creates colourful graffiti-style murals and paintings that focus on the architecture of the Favela communities of Brazil. Last night he painted a mural for Café Art in our Qbic Hotel base in East London.

Ricardo, who is here to help Brazilian flip flop company Havaianas launch a summer 2017 range based on his paintings, wanted to connect with the London by doing a mural on a wall here and we were really happy when the Qbic Hotel gave him one of their main walls in the hotel. The Qbic Hotel has given Café Art free storage of our paintings and photographs since November 2014.

Julie Fawcett, managing director of Qbic Hotels London says that while Qbic was always set up to be a business that made money, looked after people, do things that normal hotels do, it also had a strong emphasis on ethical behaviour and doing good business. “Part of that is supporting the community and [their] projects surrounding us. So we were absolutely delighted to support this. We have been a long time supporter of Café Art and that relationship has been I think beneficial for both of us. It’s a really great example of how an organisation like us and an organisation like Café Art can come together for mutual benefit. And today we had this amazing work of art drawn on our wall, organised by Café Art, which has been a huge symbol I think of how the two organisations can work together for such a great outcome.”

Ricardo has been doing graffiti art for 16 years. He says his paintings, which focus on images in the marginalised communities in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, focus on joy, purity and intimacy. He was flown to London by Havaianas with the art gallery owner Roberta Britto who exhibited his work and helped him contact Havaianas with his ideas and designs for the flip fops in 2015.

Roberta explained that Ricardo approached Havaianas with the idea for using his designs on their flip flops. Havaianas decided to open it to other designers and Ricardo submitted 30 designs, and they chose three of his designs.

Havaianas Europe decided to fly Ricardo to launch his three designs in London, Porto, Portugal and Dublin.

With only a few days in London Café Art was very happy to show Ricardo a small part of the East End the other day, after buying the dozen spray cans for the Qbic Hotel mural which was completed in about five hours late on a Wednesday evening. Ricardo will be painting live at Havaianas in Westfield London and the painting will be exhibited by Cafe Art along with another one being created in Porto by him.

We hope to host an exhibition by Ricardo in the Qbic Hotel soon, including several other paintings he did in Brazil and brought with him, with profits going to Café Art. Keep an eye on our website for more information!

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