Barros and Peres skate Oscar Niemeyer's iconic architecture

June 10, 2020 | Skateboarding
Pedro Barros and Murilo Peres: the duo skated Oscar Niemeyer's most iconic architecture | Photo: Red Bull

Brazilian skateboarders Pedro Barros and Murilo Peres were given permission to skate some of Oscar Niemeyer's iconic architecture.

Niemeyer is generally regarded as Brazil's greatest ever architect, designing iconic buildings in his native Brazil and abroad.

And as a tribute to his stunning creations, Barros and Peres were given a one-off access-all-areas pass to skate his architectural designs.

The duo rode several quintessential buildings ranging from the National Congress in Brasília to the Contemporary Art Museum in Niterói.

Project "Concrete Dreams" shot the Brazilian pair as they realize a lifelong dream to skateboard in locations where it had never been deemed previously possible.

They took skateboarding where it's never been before - jumping across buildings at Belo Horizonte's administrative city or racing down ramps akin to a colorful waterslide at the Contemporary Art Museum.

The skateboarding duo studied architectural drawings beforehand to ascertain what might be achievable on buildings that lend themselves so well to their sporting passions and livelihoods.

Pedro Barros and Murilo Peres: the duo rode the most iconic buildings in Brazil | Photo: Red Bull

Barros and Peres' adventure resulted in a series of visually stunning shots on some buildings created before the sport even existed.

"The proposal from the beginning seemed to us an incredible idea," explained Carlos Ricardo Niemeyer, executive superintendent of Oscar Niemeyer Foundation.

"There is a strong identity between the universe of this sport and Niemeyer's architecture and its values."

"Irreverence, freedom, the search for challenges, creativity in movement, all of this is in the essence of skateboarding as well as in Niemeyer's work, made of free, beautiful, and surprising curves."

A Huge Privilege

Pedro Barros felt the irony of skating at buildings where it is normally illegal.

"We're skating in memorials, skating in things where we never thought skating would be allowed," added the professional skater.

"Security guards were here letting us skateboard and smiling with that and being happy. That was pretty insane to see."

The 25-year-old from Florianópolis, says it was a childhood ambition.

"I always dreamed of skating on those skateparks that weren't made for skating but made 60 years ago. It's insane. I'm thinking about how important this project can be for skateboarding."

Skateboarding: when sports meets architecture | Photo: Red Bull

Pedro Barros won his first professional title at the age of 12, adding an X Games gold medal to his trophy cabinet three years later.

He has also conquered several world-class events.

Murilo Peres, the youngest of four brothers, was a hyperactive child when introduced to the sport of skateboarding aged 10.

He is the current national skateboarding champion.

"Oscar Niemeyer once said that architecture, like all art in life, has to provide sensations and experiences," underlined Peres.

"And it is on concrete curves, just like Niemeyer's, that millions of skaters like me have found and live their life purpose."

"Traveling to Brazil with permission in hand to skate in some of Niemeyer's works was certainly allowed me to live moments that I will never forget."

Niemeyer is one of the most important figures of modern architecture. Aged 81, he was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize.