Kiwi Street Art

Despite being a small country New Zealand does have a rich tradition of street art. Many street artists are making their living out of this hobby. Auckland and Dunedin are the hubs. Most of the street art in New Zealand is here. The RISE festival where international artists come and showcase their art is an elixir for the development of graffiti art in New Zealand.

Banksi is here

There can be no street art without Banksi. This is one of his famous art known as ” The Flower thrower”. It was at showcase at the RISE festival.

Biggie by Owen Dippie

This street art is by New Zealand artist Owen Dippie. This is one of the well-known art “Biggie”  on walls of Dunedin. It can be found in Auckland also.

Graffiti ad by New Zealand Police

This is a stencil made wall graffiti which has been put forward by New Zealand police as a recruitment advertisement. Nice is it not?

Big Animal from Oi You festival

This unique wall mural is from famous Australian street art festival Oi You! which came to New Zealand this air. Graffiti art is indeed becoming popular in New Zealand.

Colorful Graffiti Auckland

This unique and colorful wall mural I found on a wall in a street in Auckland. The colors and hue took my breath away.

My Favorite

This one from a Christchurch street is my favorite. The one-eyed artist really is a piece of art for sure.

I would be exploring Australia next for street art. So watch for some Aussie stuff

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London and Street Art

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Its Banksy again and you will find him in London too. However London is a big city and there are a variety of street art. Just step into dark alleys and you will witness the most beautiful wall murals. Here are some I saw strolling through the unknown streets of London. I have given them titles as per me.

The Shy Girl

The Shy Girl

This is one of my favorite in a side street near west minister metro station. The art has all that is traditional – the face, the expression and the artist’s signature and the modern use of different colors. You would like this on the wall in your bed room right!

The Little patriot tailor

The Little patriot tailor

This indeed will make any designer proud. The 3 dimensional imagery is perfect. In a street next to Avalon school, it is one of the art forms I go again and again to watch. Just see how the British flag is sewn on the wall! Looks real doesn’t it?

The Octopus Elephant

The Octopus Elephant

This one I saw wandering on East London street some where. I do not remember the exact place, but will swear by the art. Have you ever seen such a monster in movies? I never have. Most probably will be there in the next Pirates of the Caribbean.

Micky and Goofy : Street Painters?

Micky and Goofy : Street Painters?

This is for my daughter a huge Micky fan. gain this has great 3 dimensional design, and would be a great wall paint for kids room.

 

5 Tips to create Street Art that stays

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Street Art

Street art is beautiful way to express yourself. However most people think it is as a nuisance. They think the street artists are ruining the walls. But street art is subtle art. However you should be prepared for smudging, as it is out in the open. Here are a few tips to make your art stay.

  • Mix wax in you paint – This is my own technique. Mostly people will try to wash off the art. It will destroy your art. However using wax will help keep the art robust.
  • Make your art on walls that are not painted – Good street art on unpainted walls will stay longer. You just have to find the right wall.
  • Use the internet for designs liked in the localityThe internet is a great source and should be used to know the mood of people locally.I am not joking you will be amazed at the response you get. You can also have a website to popularize your art.
  • Contact a buyer – Well in these changing times street art also has buyers. they will pay you for creating street art and also keep it safe for a longer period.
  • Make theme based art – An art piece that suits the local tastes or an issue that the people want raised will not be destroyed. Rather people will protect the art piece. So, know what is the issue and mold you art accordingly to make the local people guard your art.

Following these simple tips will help keep your art piece safe for a longer period and you never know somebody might be interested.

Cool street art of America

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Street Art: New York City

Street Art: New York City

 

Street in form of wall paintings and graffiti thrives everywhere in America. You just need to know where to find it.

Cities like Baltimore have embraced the art making wheat-pasting murals and artistic use of spray-paint. It has become a tourist attraction in Baltimore. People come to see the unique graffiti and wall murals.

Eye catching Mural Art

Eye catching Mural Art

Of course the graffiti can be a depressing factor for the administrative authorities but some of them are a piece of art. The normal so-called offenders are now being paid by corporates to display their unique art.Ray Paltan from Oakland California is a revered artist of wall murals and he started as a street painter.

The most number of murals can be found in Philadelphia. More than 3600 wall murals make the city’s collection .An iPhone app is there to guide you to a tour of city’s murals.

Wall Murals changes walls

Wall Murals changes walls

In California you can find street art by Any Diego Rivera at the stock exchange. Each painting is a unique piece of art. Never mind the canvass the wall murals are here to stay. The chicago arts group have started a campaign attracting best street art connoisseurs. In Miami dull parking lot and dockyard buildings are transformed by the Wynwood Walls art project. This project helped amass the world’s largest commissioned wall murals.

Thai Wall Murals in Los Angeles

Thai Wall Murals in Los Angeles

The Thai in Los Angeles have contributed as well. The Thai style paintings add to the mystical feeling of Los Angeles.

Atlanta’s living walls project is one which has added to the colour of the life.

These wall murals, graffiti and spray painting under the bridges signify the true free essence of American people.

Chocolate, cheese, Alps and…Art!? Oh Switzerland!

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It was only until I would actually get here that I could believe that Switzerland, the land of cheese and chocolate, the land that is said to be perfect and paradise, would be so rich in street art.

I was just taking my first bus from the airport to the train main station at Basel, when I started seeing lots and lots of large, colorful letters and drawings around the city. I was so impressed I believe my words could not even describe how I felt.

Swiss cantons, their cities and towns are well known all around the globe for their perfectionism and cleanliness; I guess that is why it is a surprise for almost every tourist that comes across these notable street art scenes.

As far as I have been travelling the country, it is just my second day in the land surrounded by The Alps, and Zürich and Basel street artseem to be two cantons full of street art, young people and art all around in what can be architecture, graffiti , design and decoration.

I would definitely recommend this country to whoever is looking forward to a mix of luxury, beauty, nature, art, culinary treats, tourism, music and more.

Istanbul

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Hey, I’m in Istanbul and this place rocks for street art! I was here in 2008 and there wasn’t nearly as much going on then, unless I was just completely oblivious…whatever, it appears to have taken off big style! According to some of the locals I’ve met, street art can be seen as a reaction against the reduction of civil liberties here and increasing censorship. People vented their frustrations and hopes for change during the famous 2013 Gezi Park summer protests, when citizens’ creativity was unleashed in surprising, imaginative and humorous ways. It seems to have unleashed a thirst for art that really suits the urban landscape here.

Gezi Park revolutionary penguinI started by search for street art in the Gezi heartland of Taksim, which still has the park and some of the remnants of the art. Interestingly, you can see where there was once graffiti or art but it has been erased by the municipality by all the blocks of grey/white paint covering what was there before. If you wander down into Beyoglu and boho neighbourhood Cihangir, you can find tons of street art, including a Pac-man, some ‘angry pandas’ and a murals of Turkish actors which have been there for more than a decade. The pandas are probably Istanbul’s most famous pieces of art and they are the work of Leo Lunatic, you can find them all over Beyoglu and down towards Tunel.

One of Leo Lunatic's famous angry pandaOne of my favourite areas for street art here is Karakoy, near the Bosphorıs and down towards the Golden Horn. Its back streets are teeming with graffiti from creative locals and international artists such as MET, Esk Reyn, Wicx, Nuka and Demo. While you’re around this way be sure to get a ‘Balik ekmek’ (fish sandwich – grilled fresh while you wait) or head to Gulluoglu cafe for gorgeous baklava as  a pit-stop on your street art tour. Download the Street Art Istanbul app (free) to navigate your way around the city and find some real gems. So far I’ve only seen the art on the European side but tomorrow I’m going to check out what the Asian side has to offer.

Invader

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Paris is my favourite city. It might not have the grit of Berlin, but it’s the home of art in many ways, so it’s no surprise that one of the most famous street artists comes from there. Invader takes his name from the video game Space Invaders which has inspired so much of his work. Unlike traditional graffiti artists who use stencils and spray paint, Invader uses square ceramic tiles to replicate the crude pixellation of early computer games. Therefore, his work is instantly recognisable in more than 60 cities in 30 countries around the world. He sees himself as a literal invader of space, with his mosaics as gifts to the citizens of his invaded country. He views early video games as the first steps of digital media from which everything else followed (computers, the internet, etc) and he uses iconic characters like the Space Invader aliens, Pac-Man, Super Mario, Popeye and the Pink Panther to ‘invade’ the streets.

Invader uses iconic characters from video games in mosaic form

Invader prefers to remain incognito, claiming that very few people know his real name and age – including his parents who think he is tiler in the construction industry! He documents each ‘invasion’ online and in books, and accepts that the risk of arrest is an occupational hazard. Indeed, he has been spent numerous night in prison cells around the world, most famously for placing a mosaic on the Hollywood sign. Aside from his street art, he is a proponent of ‘Rubikcubism’, taking an image from popular culture and recreating it using Rubik’s Cubes for his trademark pixel effect. Here’s an amazing blog dedicated to all things Invader.

The Berlin Wall

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It was the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall at the weekend. Berlin is a paradise for street art lovers and it all started with the wall, originally on the west side as nobody on the east side could get close enough to paint it. The wall was a symbol of political, economic and social division during the Cold War, so it was inevitable that it would become the canvas on which citizens artistically vented their frustrations and opinions.

French artist Thierry Noir is credited as being the first person to start painting the wall in 1984 as a form of protest. He was frequently intimidated by the East German border guards, so he learned to paint fast in simple fluid lines. Other Bohemian artists joined him and soon the western side was full of art. When the wall came down in November 1989 it was the start of something really special. The people of East Berlin finally got their chance to express themselves on the remains of the wall too.

The East Side Gallery was established in 1990, it’s not a traditional art gallery but more an open air memorial to freedom. It’s a 1.3 km stretch of the Berlin Wall that consists of 105 paintings by artists from all over the world. The paintings document a time of change and hope for the future, and have been both controversial and inspiring over the years. In true Berlin tradition, the anniversary celebration was spectacularly creative in a physical and symbolic way.

Seeing these events on the news has inspired me to go visit Berlin again. Payday isn’t until the end of the month so I just applied for instant cash, and have been approved. Berlin, here I come!

Art on the Berlin Wall could be controversial

A famous image from the East Side Gallery

Banksy

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Banksy: everyone has heard that name before. Love him or loathe him, he’s controversial and certainly gets people talking. I love him! He’s my favourite street artist and I really feel he stands up for the ‘everyman’ of society against mass consumerism and corporate brainwashing. I was lucky enough to visit Bristol during my summer in the UK a few years ago and I saw his work first hand. My personal favourite is his satirical and very amusing Well Hung Lover, which shows a man looking for his wife’s lover out of a window, while the man in question is hanging naked clinging to the window sill below him. Bristol is where it all began for him and I recommend you take a Banksy Walking Tour if you’re interested in his early work.

So who is Banksy? He remains anonymous, despite lots of people trying to guess who he is. In 2008 the newspaper, The Mail on Sunday, revealed who they thought Banksy was, but his identity is still unconfirmed. Whoever, he is I hope he stays anonymous for as long as possible, as I think that adds magic to his work. His work is unmistakeable, he uses iconic images and turns them on their heads: rats, monkeys, a view of Paradise beyond the Palestinian West Bank, subversive epigrams and ironic nods to his audience. Long may Banksy paint the streets!

Banksy West Bank mural

Another day in Paradise?

European Street Art

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Europe is home to some of the best street art in the world. This cannot be denied, all the big names such as Banksy, Space Invader, Vhils, Above and Stik either come from or paint in Europe. Once considered as mere graffiti or vandalism street art has evolved to become a tool for mass communication which blends into the urban landscape and interacts with the audience. In areas where there are high levels of unemployment and deprivation, street art has become a tool for people to vent their anger and frustration.

East Side Gallery in Berlin

The East Side Gallery

Fortunately, street art is now increasingly being considered a legitimate form of art. Naturally, many politicians still see it as pure vandalism (usually with an anarchist message) and seek to curtail it, but many of today’s artists have garnered good reputations and support from curators and galleries. The street art scene is most active in Berlin, which continues a long tradition of art as an expression of political freedom, started in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down and the East Side Gallery was established. This isn’t a traditional gallery, but an open air memorial for freedom and reconciliation, taking up 1.3km of the remaining part of the wall. The same spirit of creativity as part of a counterculture movement lives on in the streets of Europe today.