Cities will move you, arouse your senses, and spark your desires, each in their own special way. Walk the streets, and New York feels different than Sydney or Paris. Each has its own unique charm. As travelers, we know this to be true. For me, a city’s fingerprints lie in it’s streets and laneways.
This curious piece of art can be found wandering through the streets of the city’s urban district, Grünerløkka. You will be immediately drawn to the bright colours of the weird and wonderful masterpiece – it certainly makes you wonder what the artist was thinking about when he created this incredible wallscape!
The city of Funchal on the Portuguese island of Madeira exhibits some of the most beautiful street art, all painted onto the doors of the city’s oldest and most colourful street, Rua de Santa Maria. This particular door really struck me as it transports you into a different, underwater dimension and brought back memories of my childhood, watching the Little Mermaid, not to mention Finding Nemo!
London is known for many things and while there are the glamourous things to see like the Buckingham palace and MI5 building, there is also a more artsy and expressive side of London just waiting to be discovered. Check out Shoreditch and Brick lane – home to the hipsters and some great graffiti and artwork.
From Shepard Fairey to Bansky, street artists come to this area of London from all over the world: Shoreditch hosts the greatest concentration of techniques, variety, and beauty of street art in the whole city. The abandoned waterloo tunnel on Leak Street showcases graffiti from local artists and you never see the same art twice, with artist painting over an existing piece each couple of weeks.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
There is a rich tradition of street art in Buenos Aires. In the city, it is used as a method of artistic expression but also for political statement. And in the neighborhoods of San Telmo, Los Colegiales and Palermo Soho, you will find it splashed everywhere. The San Telmo neighborhood is known for it’s street fair and outdoor tango exhibitions, but on the day I visited, it was all political protest and street art.
Think the Caribbean is all about beaches? You might be surprised to find a thriving street art scene in Curacao. The people of Curaçao have never been intimidated by color, and it shows as you explore their vibrant streets and alleyways.
Push past the glitz and glamour of Gucci clad, cash-splashing Jingan and end in Shanghai’s grey and polluted waters of Suzhou Creek. At first sight, you’ll assume you’ve turned up at this place one year too early: construction abounds and giant diggers wade their way through a concrete mess. M50, a truly refreshing space of vibrant street art. What is so fantastic about this space is how it continues contort and change continuously.
Queens, New York
This intriguing roof-top display of street art can be found in the Jackson Heights Neighborhood of Queens in NYC.
Portugal is well-know for it’s Port wine and great food. It’s lesser known for it’s street art, but there’s a thriving art presence. One of the most prolific street artists, Hazul, has been decorating walls throughout the old town in his distinctive colorful and playful style for years. It’s fun turning a corner in the narrow and twisting back streets and discovering one of his pieces!
San Francisco, California
During the 1940’s to the 1960’s, San Francisco’s Mission district was heavily settled by Mexican immigrants moving into the area. The demographic shift, coupled with the popularity of Diego Rivera’s Mexical murals created a fertile environment for the development of street art. The neighborhood is chock-a-block with murals and you can get your bearings by checking in at Precita Eyes to get a map or schedule a tour.