Boston glimpsed the power of Brazilian street art when a 70-foot-by-70 foot mural of a boy in pajamas showed up in Dewey Square in 2012. Some were shocked (it depicts a terrorist!), some were awed (the colors!), but all then knew of the twin Brazilian graffiti artists Os Gemeos.
But that was just a glimpse. In Brazil, street artists have embraced a new gift from Rio de Janeiro mayor Eduardo Paes: the full legalization of graffiti on specified city property. The resulting paintings, many of which depict a city torn between its love for soccer and anger over money spent hosting the World Cup, are stunning.
Could Boston’s street artists, given a similar opportunity, create that strong a testament to the human spirit here? There’s only one way to find out.