Roberto Mamani Mamani is one of Bolivia’s most famous artists and his vibrant, geometric work comes in all shapes and sizes including these massive Mamani Mamani murals on a collection of apartment buildings located in El Alto, Bolivia which combine art and culture in big, bold ways.
The story behind the Roberto Mamani Mamani murals in El Alto, Bolivia
At first glance, the Mamani Mamani murals in El Alto may seem like a simple case of vibrant, joyous, larger-than-life public art, but there’s more to them than that.
The artist has said that he was inspired by the spiritual life of the Aymara Indigenous group and by the group’s colorful flag. Bolivia’s Indigenous flag is called the wiphala (sometimes spelled whipala) and it features seven colors including red (representing the earth and the Andean man), orange (representing society and culture), yellow (representing energy and strength), white (representing time and change), green (representing natural resources and wealth), blue (representing the cosmos), and violet (representing Andean government and self-determination).
The colors of the wiphala flag provided a creative backbone to Mamani’s work which includes 14 murals covering 108,000 square feet (10,000 square meters) on seven 12 story apartment buildings with 336 apartments. Special scaffolding had to be developed for the Mamani Mamani mural project which took five months to complete and involved dozens of helpers.
Former Bolivian President, Evo Morales (an Aymara and the country’s first Indigenous president) spoke at the inauguration of the murals. And because of the size and scale of the project, these Mamani Mamani murals were submitted to the Guinness Book of World Records.
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