Top 5 Pieces of Street Art

These are all special for numerous reasons – the impact the piece had on me, where I was, who I was with, the amazing lunch I ate just after I had seen it – you know, the usual stuff.  As the Porto artists stated in their dispute with the Mayor’s anti-graffiti squad (see final entry) – keep painting.

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Mosaic graffiti in the South of France – because that is how they roll!

I gasped out loud when I saw this – it was a ridiculously hot day and I had inadvertently gone for a ridiculously long walk (so far in fact that I had to get the train back).  I had been  concentrating hard walking down a long flight of stone steps and at the bottom was this.   It’s nearly a meter long so it was fairly big and it is just there on its own, on a rural coastal path with nothing nearby except the seascape.  I laughed after I had gasped and then smiled for a long time afterwards.

 

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“Untitled 1986”  by John Buckley – otherwise known as The Headington Shark, Oxford

A controversial piece of art in the suburb of Oxford since 1986 – I had heard that it was the result of a dispute with the neighbour but unfortunately that seems an unfounded rumour.  Bill Heine who commissioned it and owned the house until a couple of years ago said: “The shark was to express someone feeling totally impotent and ripping a hole in their roof out of a sense of impotence and anger and desperation… It is saying something about CND, nuclear power, Chernobyl and Nagasaki”.

 

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Tea-Chest Mural by David Wilkinson, Edinburgh

When I lived in Leith I walked near it, past it, glanced it so many times it became part of the fabric of the neighbourhood.  Revisiting it on a recent trip to Leith it was like seeing it for the very first time.

 

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‘A touch of Venice’ by Jonas Never – Venice Beach, California

 

The 102-foot-by-50-foot adaptation of Hollywood legend Orson Welles’ 1958 film “Touch of Evil” was completed in November 2012.  Never said “I wanted to capture what Venice was, what it could be and what it is today”.  Street art is in abundance here so there are so many to choose from but I rocked up in Venice Beach late one night having done no research and the next morning, terrifically jet lagged I headed out to get breakfast and this is what I saw – what a welcome to an amazing town!

 

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AN.FI.TRI.ÃO by Frederico Draw – Porto, Portugal

Near Luis I bridge and the Guindais Funicular – it is truly an amazing sight.  The history of street art in Porto is fascinating with conflict between the artists and the authorities arising from a previous Mayor’s anti-graffiti squad painting over murals.  The artists’ response was to, in the dark of night,  go to the same place and paint a straight black line on the wall with one sentence in Portuguese Continua a pintar (keep painting).  Thanks to The City Taylors for their information on this, check out their web page for more history on street art in Porto.

 

 

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