A Light in Rio is Out With Jorge Selarón’s Passing
I was saddened to hear about the death of Jorge Selarón, the creator of the steps in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil that have carried his name for over two decades. As of now the reason for his death has not been confirmed. Meanwhile his neighbors are devastated and his family in Chile has not been located.
I visited the steps several years ago when I visited Rio. Selarón was there, minding his business and chatting with both locals and visitors. The ceramic tiles he had affixed on the nondescript staircase glistened in the sun, and I was immediately smitten. Despite the reputation the neighborhood had for being infested with crime and drug use, I found the neighborhood rustic and charming. The houses surrounding the staircases were colorful and attractive in their own right, but the Escadaria Selarón (Selarón Staircase) really stood out. Now the light of the neighborhood is gone; I just hope his staircase will continue to shine.
Here are a few photos from when I visited Rio in 2004. Travel to Rio is not complete without a visit to Selarón's steps.