Bolivia’s Carnival: An explosion of color

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Photos: Felipe Abreu

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People in the Bolivian city of Oruro are gearing up for carnival.

This year’s celebrations start on 30 January, but the main days will be on 5, 6 and 7 of February when thousands of people will congregate in Oruro.

The carnival dates back more than two centuries and is one of Latin America’s most colourful.

Photojournalist Fellipe Abreu and reporter Luiz Felipe Silva recorded some of its highlights in 2015.

See more via BBC.

Take a walk with me around Jersey City Heights

My new city is kind of a large one. Here are some shots I took walking the dog around Jersey City Heights.

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Carnival on Central Avenue.
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Strange graffiti name, but ok.
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Pretty trees!
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Fencing in the Heights!
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Yoga in the Heights
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Is that a water buffalo on the left?
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My kind of a lawn care. Fake lawn rug. Needs some ironing, too!
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View of the World Trade Center

Storify: Barranquilla, Colombia’s Carnival

I recently wrote a piece for Sounds and Colours in hopes of transporting readers to the Carnival in Barranquilla, Colombia. It contains great music, so check it out here!

I’m also compiling a Storify piece all weekend long. I’ll be scouring social media for the best images, tweets, and videos, of Carnival and share them accordingly. You can start with the pre-festivities stuff below.

[View the story “Carnaval de Barranquilla” on Storify]

Unexpected pairing: Colombian carnival & Ronzo’s street art

Ronzo & a police officer in Bogotà. Pic via his Instagram.
Ronzo & a police officer in Bogotà. Pic via his Instagram.

Colombia’s carnival, held in my parents’ hometown of Barranquilla, is upon us. For what to expect, check out these posts I wrote for Sounds and Colours.

Though I couldn’t fit a trip to “carnavales” in this year’s schedule, I keep up with the news via barranquilladecarnaval.com. This latest bit of news is worth sharing as it brings one of Europe’s most graffiti artists to Barranquilla. A mix of folkloric tradition with a specialist in guerilla urban street art? Unexpected, but very cool.

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Barranquilla, Colombia — Well-known London-based urban artist, Ronzo, will exchange knowledge with a group of artists from the port city of Barranquilla, Colombia.

Sponsored by beer-brand Club Colombia, the event will bring Ronzo together with more than 30 artisans working with the Carnival of Barranquilla — the number two most popular carnival in South America. 

The aim of the exchange is for folk artists learn more about the diverse cultural expressions of graffiti, in aspects such as creativity, colors, languages ​​and textures. Thereafter, the learning acquired by craftsmen is to serve as inspiration for the design and construction of the Club Colombia float, which will be used in the annual carnival’s biggest event — La Battala de Flores parade on March 1.

Ronzo, who refers to himself as ‘vandal extraordinaire,’ will also share his knowledge and skills with students of the Universidad del Atlántico.

Ronzo is contemplating painting a mural donated to the city of Barranquilla.

Ronzo born in Munich, Germany, and settled in London in 2000 after completing his studies in design at the School of Art in Hamburg.

It was in London where he cemented his style and became popular worldwide, leaving his creations on paper, streets, and buildings. His work is not immune to underlying social and political messages. In 2009, he installed “Crunchy, the official mascot of the global financial meltdown” in London.

Crunchy, the mascot for the global financial meltdown. (2009)
Crunchy, the mascot for the global financial meltdown. (2009)

Ronzo’s creations include illustrations, murals, outdoor installations, and sculptures. His work, in constant evolution, has been positioned in the streets, video games, galleries and cinematography.

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I’m excited to see this float! I’ll have my cousins snap a photo for me. And even though it never tastes the same here in the States, I’ll buy a six-pack of Club Colombia to celebrate.

I wonder if it’s Ronzo’s first time at Carnival. If so, he will most definitely have fun. That’s a given! Extranjeros are always received with open arms in mi bella Barranquilla. I hope he gets to visit Santa Marta, Taganga, and Cartagena, where I remember seeing cool street art.

Follow news about the carnival at the Carnival site. Learn more about Ronzo at his site or on Twitter.