living an avenue
Paulista Avenue is one of the most important avenues in Brazil and in Latin America. In a short span, this once seemingly corporatist avenue has acquired a new identity.
The first of many measures that helped redesign this new identity was the addition of bike lanes, which connect to several points in the city, and which spatially reduced the number of cars. This environmentally-friendly measure helped São Paulo’s citizens experience the streets in a different way – in a much more interactive and dynamic fashion.
On December 18th 2015, a law was sanctioned which closed off the avenue, not allowing any cars to drive through it on Sundays. This initiative has transformed the public space and how it’s used, fostering various artistic manifestations; all this in a very cosmopolitan manner. In almost every street corner there are musicians from all around the world, performing side by side with regional artists. There are also many plastic artists, displaying their work in what has become a big, roofless art gallery. Lanes are closed off with skate ramps, while tourists and local families walk freely in the middle of the avenue, next to cyclists and joggers.
Dance or yoga lessons are frequently part of the agenda, as well as animal donations, or gastronomical festivals, where included in the menu is always some organic foods (supplied by the several food trucks found around Paulista Avenue). But what calls the most attention is the amount of handmade clothing, which includes various pieces by immigrants from around the globe.
What began as a timid initiative has progressively gained traction, creating wholesome social interaction in the urban space, in a cultural, sustainable and recreational way. This trend is paradoxically disseminating through social media, where the irony resides in the fact that the “virtual world” has given birth to activities which invite us to go out to the streets more often, and to embrace access to the slow web as an ally of this new social design.
Photos by Thiago Nagasima
Lu Valenzza borned in Amazonia and based in São Paulo is a future trends enthusiast and an anthropologic observer. She is offering creative research, communications support, and trend forecasting to provide actionable insights to help society and businesses move forward in the coming years, always in touch with tomorrow think scenarios for redesign a better world.