Art in Rio: Larger-than-life athlete installations by artist JR

Art in Rio: Larger-than-life athlete installations by artist JR

Winning gesture

Text: Su Fen Tan

Image: Instagram / JR
Image: Getty Images

French street artist JR turns the Olympics host city into an urban canvas

At his last monumental installation, JR turned the Louvre into an anamorphic sight by wrapping a large photographic piece around the iconic glass pyramid, making it "disappear" against the palace façade. This time, he strikes at Rio—in conjunction with the 2016 Olympic Games, he has installed two towering installations depicting athletes in action across the city landscape.


By way of construction scaffolding, he installed black and white photographs representing two athletes on metal structures. The first work depicts Sudanese high jumper Ali Mohamed Younes Idris, who may have missed out on this year's Olympics, but is honoured by JR in Rio as he is shown mid-leap on top of an apartment building in Avenida Rui Barbosa facing Flamenco beach.

In the nearby Barra neighbourhood, the second installation is found featuring an image of an anonymous swimmer seemingly diving into the ocean.


Work in Progress #newtechnics #ioprio2016

A photo posted by JR (@jr) on

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