10 Stunning Street Arts Around The World

Art has played an important role throughout history, with painters being revered, their works coveted by the upper classes and displayed in elite museums and galleries around the world. But in recent years, a new type of art has gained prominence.

Graffiti – or street art, as it’s more commonly called these days – was once thought of only as the work of gang members and juvenile delinquents. However, with the rise of street art “stars” like Banksy, people are starting to recognize the talent of street artists, the beauty of their work and the social or political statements they often make.

Different styles of street art pop up around the world, with creators often utilizing the architecture of buildings or details in the surroundings to expand on their work. Here are ten examples of stunning graffiti seen all over the globe.

1.Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, The Netherlands:

On the side of a non-descript building in Rijswijk, an unknown artist has painted a remarkably colorful scene featuring a small airplane flown by a clown, a hot air balloon and a large fly. This cartoon-like collection of images displays the fly disproportionately large, approximately the same size as the airplane and hot air balloon. Rijswijk, it should be noted, has a growing street-art scene, with groups of artists even arranging Meetup.com groups.

2.London, England:

Known worldwide for his incredible art, which often makes political and social statements, one of Banksy’s most iconic pieces is “Balloon Girl” in the city’s Southbank area. While other versions of “Balloon Girl” have also been spotted, this one is the most famous. Like all street art, it’s open to interpretation. Some believe it’s a statement about fleeting love, due to the heart-shaped balloon floating away, while others think it hints at trying to accomplish dreams that are just out of reach.

3.Madrid, Spain:

On the side of a run-down building in Madrid, an unidentified artist has painted a large-scale, stunning and colorful image of a young girl’s face.  While her hair is black and blue, her face is a beautiful multi-colored pattern featuring yellows, pinks and blues.

4.Artotale, Germany:

German artistic duo Herakut painted a thought-provoking scene on the side of a home here. It features a large image of a young girl with pink hair and what appears to be a third eye in her hair. It’s made to look as though she’s writing the statement, “Art doesn’t help people. People help people.” on the wall.

5.Granada, Spain:

Returning once again to Spain, El Nino de las Pinturas has covered most of the side of a historic building with the image of a face and an incredible accompanying mural. Done in shades of gold, orange and brown it complements the color of the building perfectly yet stands out.

6.San Diego, California, USA:

In San Diego, Brazilian street art duo Os Gemeos have painted a vibrant image of people standing on one another’s shoulders, forming a tower up the side of a multi-story car park. At the top is the statement, “don’t believe the hype!”

7.Tehran, Iran:

In such a politically charged country with civil unrest, it’s no wonder there is a fair amount of street art. While some murals are known to feature anti- western or anti-capitalist sentiments, in Tehran there is a beautiful, colorful mural by Mehdi Ghadyanloo featuring a futuristic scene and flying cars.

8.Mexico:

Mexican street artist Nuezz draws inspiration from Aztec gods and Dia de los Muertos “the day of the dead.” His work is seen in various places around the country, but particularly bold and in a way, delightful, is his painting of day of the dead and Aztec-style faces that include cat ears and other touches of whimsy. It’s clear that while Nuezz draws on more serious subject matter to inspire his art, he has a sense of humor as well.

9.Paris, France:

While it’s never been publicly claimed by any artist, which isn’t unusual for the street art scene, a beautiful black and white mural in Paris was reportedly done by “TR.” Set on a low wall, it is simply a large, beautiful pair of female eyes.

10. Lisbon, Portugal:

A combined work of art in Lisbon was created by artists Los Gemeos and Blu. A massive image on the side of a building that plays directly into its architecture, it features a man in a business suit, wearing a crown and drinking from planet Earth with a straw. The incredible symbolism in the mural makes it worthwhile to go see and ponder!

Regardless of the country you live in, street art is an important part of pop culture that should be recognized and preserved. It creates messages about life and society that shouldn’t be ignored. If you’re in any of the aforementioned countries, don’t miss checking out these amazing works of art.  

Christopher Ferguson is a graffiti artist. He contributes to TorontoMuralists.ca, a website for Toronto area mural artists.

Revy started MashupCiti in 2007 out of pure greed and laziness in an attempt to acquire as many mashups as possible. Lover of all things bizarre and silly, Revy may be a genius or just a regular guy. It's sometimes hard to tell.