Romero Britto, Britto Central

Romero Britto

The Power of Art

Editors’ Note

Romero Britto (britto.com) has created a completely new expression that reflects his optimistic faith in the world around him. Alluding to influences of early and modern masters, Britto’s pulsating colors, pop themes, and commanding compositions have led to his becoming one of the premier contemporary artists of his generation. Britto lived an extremely modest lifestyle while growing up among eight brothers and sisters in Recife, Brazil. However, his innate creativity allowed him to fill his life with vibrant color and images of a beautiful world. He traveled to Europe in 1983 to examine firsthand the art of the masters. After exhibiting in a few galleries and private shows, Britto was encouraged to travel to the U.S., where pop art was flourishing. He moved to Miami and set up a studio that was open to the public and spent the next few years exhibiting and attracting the attention of many. In 1988, he was selected alongside Andy Warhol and Keith Haring for Absolut Vodka’s “Absolut Art” campaign. He has since been exhibited in galleries and museums in over 100 countries, including the Salon de la Société Nationale des Beaux Arts exhibition at the Carrousel du Louvre in 2008 and 2010. In December 2013, Maria Elena and Carlos Slim Domit invited Britto to be the first living artist to exhibit at Museo Soumaya. He has created public art installations for the 02 Dome (Berlin), John F. Kennedy Airport (New York), Cirque du Soleil at Super Bowl XLI, and has been credited with the largest monumental sculpture in Hyde Park (London) history. He served as an official artist for the 2010 World Cup and was appointed Ambassador to the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil. Britto’s pop sensibility has since lent itself to many collaborations with such brands as Audi, Bentley, Coca-Cola, Disney, Evian, Hublot, Mattel, and Technomarine. He is an artistic activist for charitable organizations worldwide and, most of all, an artist who believes “art is too important not to share.” He serves as a benefactor, donating time, art, and resources to over 250 charitable organizations and sits on several boards, such as Best Buddies International and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Britto was named an inaugural founding benefactor of the Harvard International Negotiation Program by Daniel Shapiro, a program that seeks peaceful resolution to modern conflict. He has been selected several times to be a speaker for the arts at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. A firm believer in the role of an artist as an agent of positive change, he is committed to developing and supporting the powerful role art plays in world issues.

Romero Britto, Britto Central

How do you describe your art and what are the key messages that you want to convey with your work?

I have always believed that art is too important not to be shared. Through my art and as the founder of the Happy Art Movement, my purpose has always been to bring joy, fun, love and hope to everyone. Just as a book author wants his creation to be read by millions of people, I also want the largest number of people in the world to be able to enjoy my art, whether through a painting or a product. You don’t have to necessarily be an intellectual to appreciate my art, but just need to look, feel, like, connect. As they say around the world, my art awakens some kind of positive feeling of joy and that is why it is so celebrated, whether by billionaires or by the broader public.

What do you see as the role that your art can play to provide hope and inspiration during challenging times?

Creating art allows me to focus on the beauty that I see in the world and sharing that perspective of hope and optimism has always been my mission. It is a difficult moment for humanity and I want to inspire millions of people to believe in better days. I believe that art that evokes happiness can be good for the soul, for the mind, and for your general well-being.

Romero Britto, Britto Central

How has Britto Central adapted the way it works during these uncertain times in order to address the pandemic?

My studio and fine art gallery are following all the requirements by the CDC and health recommendations to ensure the safety of our staff. We have also expanded our online business through www.shopbritto.com.

Britto Central is moving to a new location. Will you provide an overview of the new space and how it will impact your business?

It is a much larger space with almost 60,000 square feet in Miami. It is probably the largest artist studio in history. I have many different ideas of projects that I want to develop in my new studio and now I will be able to execute them.

What is your process for creating art and are you working on multiple pieces at the same time?

Everything begins with an inspiration, an idea, and I materialize it with a sketch, followed by color selection, saturation with acrylic paint, black lines with oil pen and, lastly, the diamond dust that is so iconic of my artwork and represents light. My color palette is very unique, vibrant and consistent. I do work on multiple pieces at the same time, all in different stages of completion.

Romero Britto, Britto Central

How do you describe the Britto client and how broad is your target market?

My art and my lifestyle brand, BRITTO, are global and very elastic, inclusive, and democratic. The Britto collector can be anyone and everyone. I have created a visual language of fun, love, hope and happiness that is relatable to all and inspiring to millions. At the same time, in fine arts I have my original hand painted artworks being sold for one million dollars, and I have branded products with my art and design sold for less than one hundred dollars.

You have built a strong team at Britto Central. Will you highlight the talent of your team and how critical it has been to attract top talent?

I have a brilliant CEO, Lucas Vidal, who joined my team in January to help me focus on solely creating my art. He leads and inspires the whole team on a new level and has added to our corporate culture being able to translate my vision and expand the business. It is very important for me to have a team that I can count on and that exceeds at their jobs daily. Attracting talent is essential to any business and I believe that people are one of the most important assets in a company, if not the most important.

Romero Britto, Britto Central, Sir Elton John

Romero Britto presenting a painting of
Sir Elton John to the international recording superstar (left)

What advice do you give to young artists as they begin their careers?

It takes a lot of discipline and passion to pursue your dreams every day. It is important to understand that it will take a lot of hard work and sacrifices. I think every young artist needs to be passionate about what they create and what they want to achieve with their dreams. The key is to always believe in yourself.

Young people today are concerned and nervous about their futures as they navigate the pandemic, issues of social injustice, racism and economic uncertainty. What do you tell them in order to provide hope and optimism about the future?

I would say to keep focusing on what you need to accomplish daily, and to think about what you can contribute to make the next day better than the last, whether it’s at school, work or home with family.