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La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina . . .     by Andrew Gibson

Colourful houses in La Boca, a neighbourhood of Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina.
© 2008 Andrew Gibson. All Rights Reserved (see policies). Contact for Use.

Brightly coloured houses in the barrio (neighbourhood) of La Boca in Buenos Aires, Argentina. La Boca (Spanish for ‘The Mouth’) is a working class barrio (‘neighbourhood’) on the mouth of the Río Riachuelo known for it’s colourful wooden houses, it’s football team (Boca Juniors) and for being the birthplace of the tango and of Lunfardo, the colourful slang spoken by Porteños (residents of Buenos Aires).

The tradition of painting the houses of La Boca in bright colours dates back to the Genoese heritage of the barrio’s early inhabitants. They were poor and worked mostly in the nearby port, and used paint left over from painting boats to paint their houses. There was never enough paint to paint one house in all one colour so they became multi-coloured.


12 Responses »

  1. Great photo and story behind the scenes! I had a paint truck when I was in dental school that got painted over with left over paint but it never had this appeal!:))
    Beauty is everywhere isn’t it, sometimes we just have to dig to find it. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I thought all the colour was enough on its own, but the paintings in the bottom left add a fantastic element. Great shot!

  3. This is so refreshing and creative. Lack of resources has never inhibited creativity, it only enriches the expression.

  4. this is splendid, though i dont see the zoning law nazis of Burbank California letting me get away with something like this. A friend of mine was actually sued by the city as he painted his house blue with white and yellow swirls while letting his grass grow long.

    Learn to Draw Beautifully

  5. What a fantastic photo, im really impressed!!

  6. Great photo and story behind the scenes!

  7. Beautiful shot! I love this house it is so bright,colorful, and inviting.

    The paintings in the indented arch are a very nice touch.

  8. I like the colors its awfull, thanks

  9. I have been to La Boca many times, and have made several photo’s of these houses myself. None of which came out like yours. Compliments!

  10. La Boca is by far one of the greatest places to visit in Buenos Aires. The picture is great, thanks for sharing it :)

  11. Great photo very nice touch.

  12. This is creative.

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