Gonçalo Ivo, the son of a poet and a teacher, is influenced by the circulation of parents in cultural settings. In addition to meeting writers, he has been a student of plastic artists, such as Iberê Camargo. Adolescent, enrolled in painting and drawing classes at the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro (MAM / RJ).

In 1983, he graduated in architecture and urbanism from Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF) and during the 1980s worked as an illustrator and graphic designer for publishing houses in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.