5 Brilliant Holiday Destinations For Street Art Lovers

by Christie Cluett 23. September 2015 11:52

When visiting many cities, it’s easy to think that the municipal government must have got a bargain price on boring grey paint. Consequently, street artists from around the world have taken it upon themselves to introduce a splash of colour to urban areas in dire need of a facelift.

Yet alongside an appetite for vibrancy, urban art also seeks to reflect the socio-economic factors that shape any city. For this reason, street art offers the ideal prism from which to view the issues and concerns that truly affect and concern the local populace.

So if you’re a traveller looking for an authentic taste of city life, here, in no particular order, are five brilliant holiday destinations for street art lovers.


Above: Street art that formed part of the Crono Project curated by Vhils. Image by Bosc d'Anjou

 The Portuguese capital’s street art scene is world famous. And the main man responsible for this is Alexandre Farto, who is known internationally as Vhils. He has played a key role in transforming the city’s most rundown neighbourhoods, by inviting internationally renowned street artists to create huge murals across Lisbon.

The most impressive examples borne from this project live in the area that surrounds Picoas Metro Station. However, the spiralling streets of Alfama and the Lisbon waterfront are also home to some of the finest street art that Europe has to offer.



Above: Part of the East Side Gallery, which covers the old Berlin Wall. Image by SarahTz

Arguably, Berlin is the street art capital of Europe. Throughout the city, you will find examples of striking urban art everywhere – from doorways and walls to the sides of houses. However, there are a handful of areas within the city where street artists have essentially ‘taken over’.

Kreuzberg is Berlin’s unofficial centre point for all things bohemian, and boasts a veritable bounty of street art masterpieces. Meanwhile, Berlin’s legendary East Wall Gallery covers around half a mile of what was once the Berlin Wall. Here you will find a myriad of politically-driven paintings that represent freedom and hope, at the same time as providing a reminder of Germany’s turbulent past.



Above: Three murals from Brick Lane, London. Image by Loco Steve

You don’t need a passport in order to experience the world’s best metropolitan murals. This is because a simple jaunt to our capital city can provide all the graffiti-based gratification you’ll need.

A great place to start is next to Waterloo station, where there’s an authorised art tunnel that provides an ideal appetiser to the street art movement that has engulfed the city.  After that, you should check out Brick Lane, where some of the planet’s best purveyors of urban art – such as Banksy and Ben Eine – have left their mark.


New York


Above: Eduardo Kobra street art on the west side of Manhattan, New York City. Image by Nan Palmero

For street art, the Big Apple is where it all began. Thus, every self-respecting street artist that has ever held a can of spray paint in anger has, at some point, left their mark in the city that never sleeps. However, the more free-spirited areas of Greenpoint and Bushwicke are where you will find the most surreal designs.

As the popularity of street art has grown, city planners have generally become more accommodating of guerrilla artists. Therefore, New York is now home to a huge number of tours that will ensure you won’t miss the best urban murals the city has to offer.



Above: Urban art at Calle Del Embudo - Bogota, Colombia. Image by Ricardo Quintero

Columbia and Bogota’s tumultuous history and current state of political unrest provides inspiration for some of the world’s most vibrant and diverse street art. Conveying messages of civil war and institutionalised corruption, the city’s most remarkable murals are as volatile as they are beautiful.

Without a doubt, the best way to experience and understand the work of Bogota’s various artists is to take the free graffiti walking tour. This starts at the heart of the city, at 10am, every day.

However, Bogota’s biggest breakthrough artist is StinkFish, who now sells canvases of his work for huge amounts of money and produces commissioned pieces around the world.

Fancy owning a piece of street art-inspired artwork to hang in your home or office? Then simply visit the ArtGallery.co.uk homepage and use the search tool on the right to find urban art to match your taste and budget.


The Autumn Exhibition in Malvern Theatres

by Humph Hack 13. September 2015 15:21

One of the joys of curating exhibitions at Malvern Theatres, is discovering new talent and giving those artists exposure to a much wider audience than before. This doesn’t have to be artists who are just starting out on their creative journey.

 A good case in point is Jill Lloyd. Her first successes in Art were whilst she was still at School. However, her art fell onto the 'back burner' as she led a busy and active life which involved a great deal of travelling.

 Some years ago, a chance meeting re-kindled Jill's interest, making her turn to painting once again. Now she paints avidly and with a passion and says she feels 'driven to paint'.

 This liveliness is very apparent in her work and she uses brush and palette knife to produce her pictures. She has a great love of colour and whilst she likes to paint traditionally, finds herself drawn to abstracting her work and painting in an Impressionistic style.

Similarly, colour and vitality epitomise the work of David Stevens.

He is mostly self-taught, having always loved art from childhood, it is only in the last few years he has devoted more time to his passion.

David uses acrylics in an abstract style, attempting to conjure something which has vibrancy and intrigue. He aims to draw the viewer into the piece. Preferring to suggest rather than show a realistic representation, his aim is to trigger your imagination, drawing inspiration from the beauty of nature and its many forms. His work often depicts a sense of movement capturing something wholly original.

Whereas Jill and David have not shown in Malvern before, Gill Stokes has shown her work there several times. She studied Fine Art after leaving school, but then decided to train as a primary school teacher, still painting and drawing in what little spare time she could find. She now paints full time. She is fascinated by the natural world and by the effects of changing light. She likes to draw and sketch outside whenever possible, but it is often more practical to make sketches and photographs and complete the painting in the studio.

She has exhibited in many galleries across the country including The Kings Place Gallery, London; Weston Park Gallery, Staffordshire; The Royal Birmingham Society of Artists Gallery, Birmingham; The Shirehall Gallery, Stafford; Keele University Gallery; The Octagon Centre, Sheffield; and The Williamson Art Gallery, Birkenhead.

This show runs every day from 13th August until 25th October.


Shining A Spotlight On Paul Burgess

by Christie Cluett 7. September 2015 13:59

Paul Burgess was born and bought up in the Wye Valley, near the market town of Chepstow. Having spent the eighties and nineties working mainly in pastels, after a chance meeting with two Buddhist nuns in 2003, he decided to spend several years in meditative retreat at a Buddhist monastery. And this experience has been influencing his art ever since. Here’s what Paul had to say to ArtGallery.co.uk about his work:  


Describe a typical day in your life as an artist

Paul Burgess: I don’t really have a typical day, each day is different. I usually have several paintings on the go at any one time, so my day is determined by which one I`m working on and the stage it`s at.

I have to be in the right frame of mind to paint, it`s not something I can do mechanically, and if I don`t feel the connection with the piece, I won`t touch it. I`ll go and do something else until it feels right to start painting. It does lead to my working day being unpredictable, but I like that, it stops me from taking things for granted and keeps me interested.


Where do you gather inspiration for your artwork? 

PB: I draw my inspiration from the landscape I find myself in and the connection I feel with it. I love exploring woodland in particular because it’s where I feel the connection the most. I can often be found out and about at dawn, searching for those spectacular early morning scenes with beautiful strong natural light.


Above: ‘Muted Blues & Dappled Light’ by Paul Burgess


What was the first piece of artwork you created and the first piece you sold?

PB: Is there every really a first piece of artwork? Most of us are making marks at a very early age, so personally I see it as more of a natural progression rather than a definitive beginning.

The first piece of artwork I sold was a 3D painting of a local church, which was painted on glass in enamels with a separate watercolour background. Everything was outlined and there wasn’t a straight line anywhere. I seem to remember selling it for £25 back in the 70s.

What is the most important piece of equipment in your artist`s toolbox?

PB: There isn’t one thing in my artist’s toolbox that is more important than anything else. Everything is equally important as I need it all to do what I do.


Above: ‘Wentwood Limited Edition’ Print by Paul Burgess

If you could own any piece of artwork what would it be?

PB: It would be virtually impossible to choose just one piece from all the amazing artworks in the world. One that has always stood out for me though is ‘Fumee d`Ambre Gris’ by John Singer Sargent. I love Sargent`s work, and this is one of my favourites because of its beautifully subtle elegance. I could imagine staring at it for hours on end if it was hanging on my wall.

How has ArtGallery.co.uk helped you progress your artistic career?

PB: ArtGallery.co.uk have been instrumental in the development of my work, by giving me the support I`ve needed to allow my work to evolve naturally. They have tirelessly promoted my work since I joined them in 2011, which has brought my style of painting to the attention of many more private buyers and collectors.

Are you interested in hanging an artwork by this amazing artist on your own wall? Then take a look at Paul Burgess’ ArtGallery.co.uk profile now.


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