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Djerbahood Muralists: 10 Street Art Masterpieces

September 23, 2014

Djerbahood muralists did an amazing work in the ancient village of Erriadh, situated on the Mediterranean island of Djerba. Just off the coast of Tunisia, it is one of the oldest settlements in the country where Muslims, Jews and Christians have lived together for centuries. This astonishingly beautiful and mystical place of blue skies and sand-washed white houses is hosting one of the most ambitious street art projects ever undertaken. Launched by the Parisian street art gallery Galerie Itinerrance and initiated by the Tunisian-French artist Mehdi Ben Cheikh, Djerbahood is a spectacular open-air street art gallery project featuring hundreds of murals painted by 150 artists coming from 30 countries, all created in accordance with the authenticity of the place and all intended to be preserved so they can be enjoyed for the years to come.

Following is our selection of ten street artist and their stunning Djerbahood murals inspired by the beautiful village of Erriadh and its people.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

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Alexis Diaz - Dragonfly and Hamsa

Puerto Rican street artist Alexis Diaz is known for his amazingly detailed large-scale murals of phantasmagoric creatures he executes by engraving line by line with incredible precision. For the Djerbahood street art project Diaz created two beautiful pieces crafted in his renowned meticulous style. First one is titled “Your hands build what your soul looks” in which Diaz painted an ancient symbol of Hamsa, also known as Hamesh hand, depicting a protective amulet in the shape of a palm which is popular among both Jews and Muslims throughout North Africa and Middle East. Second Diaz’s mural named “Adaptation” is a beautifully painted dragonfly which appears to be made out of twisted roots.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

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Phlegm - monochromatic characters

Surreal murals of imaginative creatures painted by Phlegm, an extremely talented, internationally acclaimed street artist from Sheffield, can usually be seen in run-down and abandoned spaces of urban landscapes throughout the world. In the village of Erriadh, Phlegm found a perfect location for his work and he spraypainted a series of smaller scale murals on disused structures, cleverly incorporating their architectural elements and randomly placed pieces of pottery to create captivating images which feature his signature sadly looking monochromatic characters in everyday situations. Phlegm’s chucklesome Djerbahood murals of quirky visual narrative show them looking out the windows, hanging clothes for drying and appearing at doors while stray cats give them company.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

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M-City - Palm Tree

Polish muralist, amateur architect and graphic designer Mariusz Waras, also known as M-City, is widely known for his meticulous stencil pieces which can be seen all around the globe, in cities such as London, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Berlin, Paris and Budapest. As a highly prolific urban artist, M-City has managed to paint several hundreds of murals while, at the same time, working as an assistant art academy lecturer, gallery curator and collector of Polish street art. For the Djerbahood murals project M-City created several witty pieces across Erriadh including the cut down palm tree mural which incorporates a real tree, junkyard car ruins decorated as zebras and watermelons painted on a run-down house in the surrounding area of the village.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Dechamps.

Yazan Halwani - Calligraphy and Portraits

Yazan Halwani is an emerging street artist from Beirut, Lebanon and one of the youngest coming from the Middle East. He is known for his complex and wonderfully executed large scale murals which combine western style of stencil graffiti with arabic calligraphy and arabesques. After his early artistic beginnings in 2010, Yazan’s artworks have, over the period of just couple of years, rapidly and radically evolved in terms of both precision and creativity. His rigorous and highly intricate murals Halwani painted in Erriadh for the Djerbahood street art project show, despite of the fact he is only 21 years old, extraordinary skill and delicate aesthetics of a true artist.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

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Amose - Hamesh Hand as Inspiration

Amose is a French street artist from Lille, member of Mercurocrom art collective. He is recognized for his signature paintings of tribal creatures with mask-like faces and disproportionate bodies, inspired by the street art of South America and Brazillian graffiti, which he paints since 2003. Such is Amose’s highly contrasted Djerbahood mural of reconstructed tribal flat figure executed in simple shapes and strong, graphic lines with use of vivid colors. Same as the previously mentioned piece painted by Alexis Diaz, for his second Erriadh artwork Amose took inspiration in the Hamsa amulet symbol, he simply yet beautifully painted in red color on the wall of an abandoned house.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

Two-One - Animal Spirits

Hiroyasu Tsuri, better known under his artistic name Two-One is a Japanese street artist living in Melbourne, Australia. This worldwide traveler is widely known for his murals featuring recognizable creatures with animal heads and human bodies he leaves on the walls of places he visits. For the Djerbahood street art project Two-One brought his raw contemporary sensibilities to the walls of Erriadh village and created this wonderful mural which stands in accordance with the authenticity of the local environment, but at the same time reflects his inner animal spirits while portraying a mystical world of spiritual tranquility. For his second Erriadh piece Two-One took a more direct approach as he created an abstract painting of the faceless “Malaka” horse rider upon which viewers can reflect themselves.

Photo credits: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps and Two-One (second photo).

Dome - Surreal Street Art

Christian Kraemer, who goes by the artistic name Dome, is an extraordinary street artist from Karlsruhe, Germany acclaimed for his fantastic murals which reflect artist’s unique taste for colossal monochromatic paintings. On one of the walls of Erriadh Dome created a mesmerizing piece of art titled “Abandon the Apple”. It is a twelve meters wide and over three meters high black and white mural created in acrylics and spraypaint, featuring strange silhouettes wearing animal heads and playing string instruments. “Abandon the Apple” is an eye-catching and breath-taking piece of surreal street art that represents a perfect example of Dome’s avant-garde art of unique aesthetics and skillful execution.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

Pantonio x Bom.K - Hamesh Hands Again

Antonio Correia Pantonio is a Portuguese street artist and arguably one of the biggest names of the street art scene in Lisbon. Painter of some of the highest murals in Europe, Pantonio gained international acclaim for his mind-boggling giant murals of dark colored animal characters, highlighted with soft and expressive brushstrokes of white, that appear like photo negatives. Pantonio’s Erriadh mural, executed in his signature style of minimalist color palette,  is a fantastic and magnetizing piece of street art, with an incredibly soft composition and so full of motion. His second Djerbahood mural, which depicts two Hamesh hands painted on the couple of wooden doors, Pantonio created in collaboration with his fellow street artist Bom.K.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

Bom.K - Tunisian Man

Bom.K is a French street artist from Paris with a track record of being almost twenty years on the street art scene. The key member of  Da Mental Vaporz crew, famed for their monumental murals, Bom.K is widely known for his shocking, dark paintings of hellish creatures, deformed human bodies and imaginary bestiary. For the Djerbahood street art project Bom.K decided to create a more accessible pieces, inspired by the place and the people of Erriadh. Bom.K’s main Erriadh mural shows a man wearing traditional Tunisian robes and his goat, floating on the wall, spraypainted in colors that blend with the surroundings. Apart from the previously mentioned collaboration with Pantonio, Bom.K’s second piece is an amazing artwork he created in collaboration with calligraphy artist Shoof.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

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Curiot - Ancient Shapes

We are going to end this list of amazing Erriadh murals with two wonderful pieces created by Favio Martinez Curiot. This painter and street artists coming from Mexico City gained international acclaim for his work that features meticulously painted and vibrantly colored human and animal forms, inspired by both Mexican traditional art and tribal art. These influences can also be found in two murals Curiot painted for the Djerbahood street art project. While the first one is showing mythical creature executed in Curiot’s more recognizable, psychedelic style of vivid colors and various geometric designs that resemble Aztecan arts, the second one is a monochromatic mystical piece that features ancient tribal shapes.

Photo credit: Galerie Itinerrance/Aline Deschamps.

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