Early in 2019 I made my way to Sao Paulo and started going around the city looking for new street art to photograph. Within days it became clear to me that this guy named Kobra was a very serious street artist (I never really researched before arriving in a new place because I always liked to be surprised by what I found). His massive kaleidoscopic murals could be found everywhere and it was unbelievable to me how one person could create so many paintings on such a grand scale. Later when I went to Rio I saw the murals he had done for the 2016 Olympics titled “Ethnic Groups” (the largest in the world at the time) and learned that these days Kobra has an entire crew to support the giant creations he continues to imagine and spray-paint into existence. Today you can find his work not only in Brazil but on buildings in major cities across the globe and even people who are not so much into street art often recognize his name.

Born in 1975 in a suburb of São Paulo, over the course of his 30 year career he has conquered the street art scene on a global scale and has left his mark in over 40 countries on five continents. The son of a housewife and an upholsterer, Eduardo Kobra grew up in a community on the outskirts of São Paulo. Detained about 3 times for painting with spray paint in the streets, today he is one of the most acclaimed street artists in the history of contemporary art.

It is interesting to know that Eduardo Kobra started at the age of 17 with “Pichação”, a form of street art characterized by particular typography painted on the facades of high buildings. He also has a fondness for studying the most representative images of humanity’s past, which, is the mainstay of many of his works.

While Eduardo Kobra’s early works were confined to Brazil, in 2011, he created his first mural outside his country when France invited him to paint a wall about immigration in a Lyon neighborhood, leading him to eventually paint murals in a number of countries around the world. In 2016, Eduardo made headlines for creating his illustrious mural “Las Etnias” (The Ethnicities) that covered Olympic Boulevard at the 2016 Rio Olympics. “Las Etnias” earned Kobra and his team the record for the largest spray paint mural by a team. A year later, Kobra and his group surpassed their previous record with their gigantic work at Cacua Show Headquarters (a chocolate company located in São Paulo), this time, painting an ode to cocoa harvest and its relation with the Amazon.

Eduardo Kobra presents spectacular works playing with light and shadow. The results are a series of three-dimensional mural works that allow the public to interact with it. Often contrasting a romantic air and nostalgic atmosphere with the characteristic agitation of big cities like São Paulo.

Despite not having been trained in any art school, Eduardo Kobra manages to achieve astonishing techniques and perfection in his works. Full of color and joy, he likes to represent people on the streets where he unmasks social problems as well as pop culture myths. Brazilian artist Eduardo Kobra uses bright colors and bold lines while staying true to a kaleidoscope theme throughout most of his art.

Additionally, Eduardo’s ability to achieve photorealism while maintaining his playful color theme is fantastic. Specifically, his use of brushes, airbrushes, and spray cans serve as a means of bringing notable figures from the past to life, emphasizing their true nature, dignity, and beauty. You can’t help but feel nostalgic as you look at his creations, going back to a time when such people existed while Kobra adapts them to the modern visuals that we are so used to recently.

You can follow Eduardo Kobra’s newest works on his Instagram profile https://www.instagram.com/kobrastreetart/ and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/kobrastreetart.