Since August 16, the artist Davi De Melo Santos, known as DMS, has been giving new life to the work “O Abraço”. The work, which is part of the Cura – Urban Art Circuit, was painted in 2017 as part of the 120th anniversary celebrations of Belo Horizonte.
Much loved by the people of Belo Horizonte, O Abraço deteriorated very quickly due to the infrastructure of the building where it is located, on Rua Tupinambás, in the central region of the capital. With new painting methods, CURA and the artist realize their dream of restoring it.
According to Priscila Amoni, one of the creators and curators of CURA, “the 2021 version comes at a special moment, of hope, where we are all dreaming of a hug. Embrace family, friends, the street, the city, life. An outdoor hug seeing the blue sky of the day, or the stars of the night. A hug that fits everyone, everyone and everyone. An embrace of the good life that connects us to the past and shows us a way to build a future where this simple and strong gesture is the metaphor of our society”.
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Artist tells us the meaning of the work
DMS says that the work “departed from Italy in a context of the migratory flow that has occurred all over the world, but, especially in Europe, as if it were Europe embracing Africa”. Son of an interracial couple, the artist says that he ended up “seeking to find this identity of mine in his own embrace, but at the same time, bringing something that belongs to everyone. When I put the black embracing the white, the day embracing the night, it is the embrace of diversities, it is the meeting of peoples”.
The Embrace and the Pandemic
The new coronavirus pandemic has caused many people to lose loved ones or need to move away, due to social isolation. DMS states that this scenario makes the hug even more symbolic because “it also ends up gaining a space of eternity, an eternal hug, one that remains, that will remain, that does not fall apart. It’s not just about now, it’s a present time, but continuous”.
For Davi, the hug represents the fight for life and this “collective hug, a hug that will touch everyone, will be a hug for the city. People will be able to feel welcomed in some way, an image that conveys comfort”.
The painting will be ready on September 1st at the Príncipe de Gales Building, Rua dos Tupinambás, 179, downtown Belo Horizonte.
Source: BoF Minas Gerais
Edition: Elis Almeida