As we are slowly moving out of the lockdown, street art is getting back on the streets around the world with precaution. Many artists have chosen to either reference the health crisis the world continues to struggle with or the institutional racism and police brutality plaguing the US. Here are the best pieces from around the world; in the meantime, be sure to follow us on Instagram to always stay up to date.
A German street art collective, 1UP is widely known for tagging various places with their easily recognizable symbol, but also for the unity of the crew. The collective recently tagged a train in Belgium with a graffiti reading "Please, I can't breathe". The piece is created in memory of George Floyd, yet another person of color was murdered by police officers in the US. On their Facebook page, the collective proclaimed:
Racially motivated police brutality is an ongoing issue in the US and a lot of other countries. It has to stop now, once and for all! Justice for George Floyd, Justice for all victims of the abuse from authority. Support you local anti brutality movement. Get organized!
An Italian street artist, Vesod is known for his personal painting language which draws inspiration from both renaissance art and futurism. The artist recently took part in the Urban art field festival in Cavagnolo in Italy, creating an impressive mural titled Respira (Breathe). As the artist explained, the piece was dedicated to the people who lose their life because of the asbestos industry.
A Spanish contemporary artist, David de la Mano is celebrated for his stunning monochromatic murals depicting anthropomorphic silhouettes of individuals and masses that serve as a symbolic reflection of the humankind and the human perception of the world. The artist recently created a piece in Montevideo as part of the Buceo Project that seeks to revitalize public spaces located between the homes of the Diving Unit. Titled Inner Shadow, it is executed in his distinct black and white aesthetic.
Artists JR and Zenith joined forces with students of Ecole Kourtrajmé to create a stunning mural in Paris that pays tribute to Adama Traoré and George Floyd - victims of racial discrimination and police brutality in the US. This large-scale paste up piece combines the marks on the floor of the place where Georges Floyd was killed in Minneapolis with Adam Traoré’s and George Floyd’s eyes, looking at the horizon. ⠀
A visual artist from New York City, Rob Anderson looks at any space as an opportunity and with bold lines and shapes ignites his audiences innate connection to creativity. Delightfully free and irreverently reverent, his recent piece titled Kittizens of Kindness appeared in Queens, infusing the neighborhood with a splash of color.
The gallery Le Feuvre & Rose is currently hosting an exhibition of new works by Ella and Pitr, a street art duo known for unusual murals that transform the surfaces into whimsical playgrounds. In addition to the show, the duo has been very active on the streets of the city. Titled Metaphor of Someone, their latest mural is the first wall the duo painted that doesn't feature their well-known characters. The piece features a photo-realistic fabric spreading across 15 meters at Paris' 8th District.
Artists Mina Hamada, Miss Van and Jeff McCreight recently visited Tudela on the occasion of Avant Garde Tudela, one of the first mural festivals of the year. Fresh out of lockdown, the festival infused energy and hope for bringing art back to the streets and set it free. Mina Hamada created a piece characterized by shapes and colors that evoke mother nature, the elements, the environment; Miss Van painted Las Gitanas, featuring two dreamlike muses; while Jeff McCreight's Ru8icon features two kids jumping into water.
A Portuguese illustrator, graphic designer and visual artist, AKACORLEONE is known for his dexterity in using colors, typography, characters and forms, which he blends to achieve eye-catching compositions imbued with originality and an all-pervasive humor. The artist recently visited Caldas da Rainha in Portugal on the occassion of the FALU Festival to create a piece titled Obrigado. The piece pays homage to all the people that had to make sure that we had food, medicine, culture, that the young ones had education and the older ones had company during the lockdown.
The Portuguese artist Vhils is best known for his dramatic, oversized portraits carved directly into outdoor walls. The artist applied his exceptional technique to create a new piece on the wall of the São João University Hospital Centre in Porto that pays tribute to all healthcare workers and ancillaries.
An acclaimed German street artist known for pieces that combine brilliant photorealism with a strong note of surrealism, Case Maclaim has recently visited Aalborg in Denmark to take part in the mural project Out in the Open. Titled Carnival is canceled, the piece references the cancellation of the biggest carnival in Northern Europe held in the city since 1983 due to health crisis. The artist explained:
A carnival is something special because it is an event where all are equal. It is the only time of the year where everybody gets to be the same – rich or poor, CEO or student, man or women, since everybody is dressed out to be something different.
Featured image: David de la Mano - Inner Shadow. The courtesy of the artist.