Interview Series: Bicicleta Sem Freio


Earlier this week, Brazilian duo Bicicleta Sem Freio released “Hammer Time,” a brand new limited edition screen-print created in order to support the good lads from non-profit association PangeaSeed. 

Following their recent international large-scale public artworks across Europe and America in major cities likes London, Berlin, Miami, Las Vegas or Los Angeles (where they painted the largest building ever in DownTown), Bicicleta Sem Freio aka Douglas de Castro and Renato Perreira are now recognized worldwide for their expressive line work and warm, vibrant color schemes.

Their signature style, which draws references from their roots in music, Brazilian culture, their love for 80s and pop culture iconography, have been emerging on large-scale public installations all over the world, including recently on a mythical Oscar Nemeyer building in Brazil.

We had a chance to sit down with Douglas for a quick Q&A, and here is what he had to say:


LF: who does what and how do you organize the creative process?

BSF: Renato does the crazy plants and I do the orange chicks, we both have different style that we usually mix on the mural but rarely on paper. But we always share our ideas and consult each other a lot. 

LF: Your design are very often composed with girls, how comes, who are they and what influences do they have on you? Do you have icons?

BSF: Some of the girls that i am drawing are girls that i met and they really exist, some others are purely imaginative, i have never met them even if i would love to. Some others are for example my girlfriend of the moment. At the end I would say that girls made me do the best and the worst things of my life.

We love icons such as  PJ Harvey, Evan Rachel wood, Tiazinha and Ilda Furacão who are some Brazilians pin-up.

LF: Who are your main influences or influencers in the art scene?

BSF: We love the rock poster illustrator artist. Mostly from the 60’s and 70’s but also some more contemporaries. We are influenced by l’Art Nouveau and Renaissance artists. We also met some awesome artists since the last 2 years because of the mural events that we admire a lot and in a way influence us too.


LF: How did Bicicleta start?

BSF: We are from Goiánas, nit a lot of people know this city as its not in a famous state of Brazil. We draw since we are kids and i played drums in a band called Black Drawing Chalks for 10 years, and I always wanted to be a rock start. I met Renato 11 years ago at the art school where we had the idea of doing an art collective named Bicicleta Sem Freio – By the way we are sorry for choosing this name that nobody understand or can even pronounce outside of brazil –  in the beginning we were 9 dudes, now we are just 2. Me and Renato. 

LF: What is your ambition and dream? Where would you like to be in 5 years?

BSF: We are working in what we love and travel around the globe, we are our own boss… We are pretty much living the dream right now. 

In five years I want to be riding a jetski made of gold with a white eagle on my shoulder and pepperoni pizza in my left hand. Renato will probably be in a apple store buying a few new MacBook. I am kidding, I have no idea, life is so crazy!

LF: What is your best memory as an artist? 

BSF: Probably our first mural ever in Las Vegas with Justkids for Life in beautiful in October 2013. After this one our lives become pretty different! haha 


LF: You are internationally recognized from Europe to USA and travel everywhere. How is your career in Brazil? Do you know about the Brazilian Art scene? Do you have future projects there? 

BSF: We had barely painted in Brazil besides indoor murals and skate parks, and ironically we don’t have any murals yet. But next month we are gonna paint a huge wall in our city, for a great music festival called Bananada.

About the scene we know some good artists in our hometown and a few ones from other cities but we are not so familiar with the Sao Paulo scene for example because of the distance and the fact that we never lived there.

LF: What do you appreciate the most in your work?

BSF: The freedom. To feel free to do what I want… and drink at work of course.

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