Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Extreme Murals & Painted Buildings

"QUANTUM SHOT" #687
Link - article by Avi Abrams




Bleak Walls Transformed by Creativity

Urban landscape can be drab and featureless - but not when artists are spicing it up with spectacular wall paintings, as shown in this article. Some murals can be considered realistic illusions, some have educational and historical meaning, some can be labeled as "kitsch", but all of them are welcome splashes of color and creativity in the city's day-to-day life.


(Restoration of the Fine Arts Museum of Brussels, photo by Maxime)

We'll start with a cheerful building in Tarragona, Spain:


(images credit: Jesus Garrido, David Mari Frasquet, see details here)

A beautiful one found in Campestang, France (left) - and an intriguing painting on the old door in Rome:


(images credit: Pappe, Piterart)

Ornate balconies in Barcelona (left):


(top left image credit: Santi)

Apartment buildings in Holland (if not for paint, they would definitely look depressing and bleak):



Portrait murals are especially effective when painted on dilapidated old walls, speaking about passage of time, life and real values:




Here is a series of buildings in Lyon, France:




(images via)

And a more psychedelic variety from Russia:



(image via)

Something strange arrived in Berlin (left image); and a magenta fish found in Japan:


(left image credit: Piterart)

The sailing ship on the right was spotted in Brussels:


(right image credit: Eliseo Oliveras)

A couple more from Paris, sent in by Stan Barets:


(photos by Stan Barets)

I took this photo in Cannes, France:


(image credit: Avi Abrams)

The following wall paintings are in Jerusalem, and reflect the city's multifaceted past:


(images credit: Nathan)

Germany is full of the wonderful murals, especially in Bavaria, where it became a traditional folk art:


(image via Genador)


(image credit: Avi Abrams)

Very sophisticated mural in Quebec, Canada:


(image credit: Vince Arno)

One in Belfast, Ireland:


(photo by Nikakoj)

Back side of the Gooderham Flat Iron Building in Toronto:


(photo sent in by Jim Sellen)


Looooong 3D Murals by Eric Grohe

Here is an artist who really breaks the monotonous geometry of official buildings, parking lots, and shopping malls, with his own marvelous perspective and 3D illusions. Eric Grohe has an impressive array of projects on his site, check them out.

Bucyrus Area Community Foundation, Ohio:



Here is how he makes an endless wall of the shopping mall actually... attractive:



(images credit: Eric Grohe)

Swimming pool mural:



Chamber of Commerce, Bucyrus, Ohio:



Here is another wonderful example of wall 3D paintings, but I'd like to know who the artist is:



(image via)

Various 3D Wall Paintings, all spectacular:

Many are by trompe l'oeil ("trick of the eye") muralist and artist John Pugh:





(images credit: John Pugh)

What you've just seen is not in any way three-dimensional, it's all a trick, an illusion... Here are some places (walls) on which this wonder unfolds: a sidewalk in Sarasota County Health Center, Florida... all-too-realistic wave in a sidewalk in Honolulu, Hawaii...the 'earthquake' wall on Main Street of Los Gatos, California, was created following a real earthquake there in 1989...



"Tunnel Vision" at AgFirst Building in Columbia, South Carolina:



(images credit: John Pugh)

Here is another transformation trick by mural painter Dominique Antony - boring grey facade of the Paris’ Saint-Georges Theatre, shown before and after:


(images via)

Some of the "trompe-l'oeil" in Belgrade, Serbia:


(image credit: Ninello52)

Beautiful wall painting in Rome, Italy:


(image credit: Pier Giorgio)

Montpellier, France (on the left)... and a perspective illusion in Madrid, Spain (bottom right):


(images credit: Jean-Louis Zimmermann, Ana Alas)

Very nice painting on a wall of a bakery in Dijon, France:


(image credit: Nils Andriessen)

Extreme animated crowd by Kenny Scharf, in NYC:


(see more here)

These people are watching you.... somewhere in Russia (they would, wouldn't they?):




(mural in Warsaw, Poland )



(images via)

Even creepier is this mural (location unknown):




Using Colour... to the Max!

Gaudy but impressive colors of the Ramenskoe apartment district in Moscow:




Is this the utmost in urban psychedelics? The whole apartment complex painted in unbelievably bright colors... Looks interesting enough, but how would it feel to live in the middle of a paint explosion or a rainbow gone nuts?



(images via)

Colourful painted apartment buildings of Tirana, the capital of Albania (post-communist efforts to brighten up depressing old urban blocks):



(image credit: David Dufresne)

Gorgeous, almost glowing Caminito district in Buenos Aires, Argentina:


(images via 1, 2)

The richest colours combine into a feast for the eyes:


(image via)

Now... how about some fun in the ghetto? This was exactly the mission of two Dutch painters Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn - to go to the poorest section of Rio de Janeiro favelas (slums) and paint it in the cheerful way, with active participation of people who live there:




(images via)

Perhaps the most famous mural of all: "Apple Corp." (that is the Beatles, not Steve Jobs) wall on Carnaby Street in London:


(image via)

Banksy's wonderful mural / graffiti gracing a wall of an "UP" building slated to float into the clouds:



And while you're painting the wall, you might as well have some lunch and a card game break ("Compagnie les Passagers" street theater):


(image credit: Rogiro)

This post will be the first installment in a series. Please send us the photos of cool murals you spotted around the world, and we'll make up the second part from your submissions (send it to "Suggest a link" email). Good hunting!

CONTINUE "PAINTED CITY BLOCKS"! ->

See the rest of our "ARCHITECTURE" category ->

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