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Meet the artist behind our Retratos style!

Meet Ricardo Negro, the talented Brazilian based artist behind our Retratos print thongs.

We caught up with Ricardo to learn about his artistic background and the inspiration behind his colourful creations.
What inspired you to become a street artist?

Hip-hop and spray graffiti influenced me from the beginning. Hip-hop in Brazil saved many lives, it was and is a movement that teaches me a lot. With hip-hop I learnt how to produce graffiti art and it was this style of art that led me to enter a visual arts college where I discovered that I could be an artist!

Today, I paint less on the street (due to canvas painting), but I'm always doing one thing or another. At first, my father didn’t like me painting on the street, but I think he would be thankful today, because graffiti pulled me away from many bad things and gave me an opportunity.
Where do you find inspiration from in creating your art?

In everyday life, watching people, the houses, the world. I always try to bring what I see as a positive and give value to simple things. The world has a lot of problems, but I try to simplify, and I like to feel good. I hope people feel good when they see my paintings. 
What does Havaianas mean to you as a brand?

For me it is a brand that is forward thinking, a brand that looks to the future. Havaianas produce simple, intelligent and functional ideas. It is also a democratic brand for everyone, this is what I like the most about Havaianas - a product for all classes, from a simple guy like me to a financially rich person. The sun is here for everyone, the land too and we have to understand the concept of sharing. This is what I want with my art too, to make it accessible to all people, something that Havaianas has already achieved.
What’s the reason behind choosing the streets of Brazilian town print for the collaboration styles?

I am street, I am favela, I paint the reality that Brazil tries to hide, we live in a country of black majority, but when I turn on the TV it seems that I live in Europe, the media shows a reality that is not ours.

Brazil is really beautiful, but it's not just Rio de Janeiro, samba, women and soccer. We are rich in art, culture and above we produce a lot of art. We have beautiful places where I live, but it is not a postcard. Sensationalist media tells us that the favela is dangerous, and people suffer, but I want to show it is a happy place, full of good people, full of culture and art, living history, people who face various problems daily without the government help. 
What are three words that describe summer for you?

Sunset, vacation and family.

What are your strongest memories of summer in Brazil?

The sunset is remarkable, being on the beach or in a park, that pleasant climate with family and friends, talking and contemplating this beauty that belongs to everyone. The same sunset I see here, you contemplate there also in another part of the planet, it’s magical. Your summer is beautiful too.

What is your favourite beach in Brazil?

It is difficult to have a favourite beach here in Brazil as it has a lot of beautiful places. I travel more along the south coast and north of São Paulo. But answering the question, I usually visit an environmental reserve that is in Peruíbe-SP, there are many beaches along the way, a very beautiful place.

To see more of Ricardo Negro’s amazing artwork, check out his Instagram page here > @ricardonegroofficial


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