The word pretty isn’t often associated with the shantytowns of Rio de Janeiro. But gazing across the hills toward the notorious Santa Maria favela, you might be pleasantly surprised by the burst of colors—the result of a recent social art project launched by Dutch design duo Haas&Hahn.

“We chose to bring color to a neighborhood that did not have a tradition of that,” says Dre Urhahn, who, with his partner Jeroen Koolhaas, enlisted community members to view their walls as a blank canvas teeming with creative possibilities. “We did not just want to bring something to the neighborhood, but to let something grow out of the inspiration that we found there.”
So insanely pretty.

1. Burano in Venice, Italy

Burano in Venice, Italy

Flickr / O Palsson / Via Flickr: opalsson

2. La Boca in Buenos Aires, Argentina

La Boca in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Shutterstock / Peter Zaharov

3. Nyhavn in Copenhagen, Denmark

Nyhavn in Copenhagen, Denmark

Flickr / Martin Nikolaj Christensen / Via Flickr: martin_nikolaj

4. Bo-Kaap in Capetown, South Africa

Bo-Kaap in Capetown, South Africa

Shutterstock / littlewormy

5. Jelly Bean Row in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada

Jelly Bean Row in St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada

Flickr / Kenny Louie / Via Flickr: kwl

6. Chefchaouen, Morocco

Chefchaouen, Morocco

Shutterstock / Sabino Parente

7. Cinque Terre, Italy

Cinque Terre, Italy

Flickr / Brian Stacey / Via Flickr: blackrockphoto

8. Longyearbyen, Norway

Longyearbyen, Norway

Flickr / Lindsey Nicholson / Via Flickr: linznicholson

9. Colmar, France

Colmar, France

Shutterstock / Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH

10. Rainbow Row in Charleston, South Carolina, United States

Rainbow Row in Charleston, South Carolina, United States

Flickr / David Shankbone / Via Flickr: shankbone

11. Willemstad, Curaçao

Willemstad, Curaçao

Flickr / John Curnow / Via Flickr: curns

12. Santorini, Greece

Santorini, Greece

Flickr / Edward Dalmuder / Via Flickr: edwarddalmulder

13. Valparaiso, Chile

Valparaiso, Chile

Shutterstock / Boris1908

14. Wroclaw, Poland

Wroclaw, Poland

Flickr / Craig Wyzik / Via Flickr: wyzik

15. Jodhpur, India

Jodhpur, India

Flickr / Nagarjun Kandukuru / Via Flickr: nagarjun

16. Pelourinho in Salvador, Brazil

Pelourinho in Salvador, Brazil

Flickr / Leandro Neumann Ciuffo / Via Flickr: leandrociuffo

17. Guanajuato, Mexico

Guanajuato, Mexico

Flickr / Justin Vidamo / Via Flickr: [email protected]

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