"My work shall not be completed not before I am dead." This is what the artist Jorge Selarón said about his works at the Escadaria Selarón in Rio de Janeiros Lapa and Santa Teresa Barrio.
In 1990 Jorge began renovating the stairs that passed in front of his house in Rio. Originally he just wanted to renovate the stairs that were falling apart but before soon it became an art project for the artist.
He startet collecting tile in the city's trash and at construction sites. At first he worked with green yello and blue colors as in the Brazilian Flag. But soon he expanded his colorful work and included many more colors in his works at the stairs. At first his neigbours were not all that excited about what he was doing. But they realized his work had become an obsession for the cronically broke artist.
Jorge started selling more and more paintings to finance his work on the stairs. People started sponsering him with donations or even better for Selarón they brought him tiles he could work with.
As the stairs became more and more known people from all over the world would drop by in Lapa were he was endlessly working with his tile and would bring him tiles from all over the world. And more and more Jorge's obsession became a work...
...of inernational character.
More colors and stranger tiles found their way to stairs in Rio.
On Selarón's steps the Swiss City of Basel lies right inbetween the Netherlands and Bermuda!
Jorge Selarón pictured and burned into a tile that he worked into his project.
As in his painted art, their appears always an african pregnant women, sometimes with Selarón's own head. While he was many times questioned about the story behind this strange portrait, he never talked about it much. "It is a problem from my past" was all that the artist who lived in more than 50 countries before settling in Rio said. .
Do you know the Lady?
.Alaskan tiles and
...and greetings from other countries, all in Rio on the Escadaria Selarón.
Reggae and Heavy Metal happely united by Selarón.
Sun and shadows are palying with the Chat Noir.
On January 10, 2013 the works of Jorge Selarón come to an abrupt end. In the early morning hours Jorge was found dead on the stairs of Lapa. His body had burn marks. But till today the investigations have not lead to any results.