IG now the street artist community in Spain & Portugal

street artist from Valencia, Spain

2010’s has probably been the best decade for the street artist community around the Iberian Peninsula.

Street art festivals, urban art fairs and graffiti events have been celebrated over the two countries, from Madrid to Lisbon & Barcelona to Porto.

This is a list of artists that you should now check:

  • BTOY
  • Hyuro
  • Julieta XLF
  • Vhils
  • Okuda
  • Bordalo II
  • Pichiavo
  • Antonyo Marest
  • + the local street artist community in Madrid

Female street artists living in Spain

The urban art industry is mostly dominated by the male figure, but today we would like to start Cooltourspain’s article with information about the best women artists.

1-. BTOY, urban art from Barcelona.

Stencil created by a female street artist
Picture by R2hox/ flickr

Andrea Michaelsson is a stencil master who mostly create colored figures of important women:

  • Pussy Riot, Russian feminist collective
  • Susan Sontag, American teacher & film director
  • Romy Schneider, French actress

Her studio work is observed in cities all around the world (i.e Barcelona, Amsterdam, Tunisia…) and in contemporary art galleries too.

Did you know that the name B-TOY comes from graffiti’s slang?

2-. Hyuro, from Argentina to Valencia (SPA)

Picture taken by Oscar Guerra
Parque Casino de la Reina. Madrid. Picture by Oscar Guerra/ flickr

Tamara Djurovic is a Spain based urban artist who has colored facades with meaningful huge bodies.

What’s really characteristic of her recent artwork is that she does not include people’s heads or faces, so that the spectator can identify him/herself with the one preferred.

Her works are seen as a social protest, and we have been able to observe topics like:

  • Judicial system
  • Gender idea
  • Feminist theme

3-. Julieta from XLF art crew, Valencia.

street artist names
Found in flickr. Picture taken by Ferdinand Feys

Julia Silla (1982), Valencia, is a post-graffiti artist whose artworks mostly talk about a little girl and her journeys.

Characteristics of her work are:

  • The girl with closed eyes,
  • Her best friend, a dragon,
  • Birds coming out of her hair.

Julieta obtains her artistic influences from walking around the city center’s narrow streets, “talking” to their walls.

She is interested in the letters (tags), but she also pays attention to colors, shapes and the different figures around.

These are (probably) the most famous Spanish urban art & street artists

Now that we described some of the most important female street artists in Spain, we should also pay attention to the ones that receive the most attention.

They are not just artists, they are also influencers.

4-. Okuda, most famous Spanish urban street artist.

Okudart
Picture by Ferdinand Feys

Goya and Velazquez are undoubtedly two of the most famous Spanish artists, but if we would have to mention those who are still alive, we would say Antonio Lopez and Okuda would be on the top.

Okuda San Miguel is an urban art creator, sculptor inventor and geometrical street art artist.

His fame took him (and his assistants) to cities from all over the world:

  • Moscow, Russia
  • Youssoufia, Morocco
  • Habana, Cuba

Surrealist pop images are his signature. Have you ever seen any of Okudart’s artworks?

5-. Pichiavo, where modernity and tradition hold hands.

Spanish street artist duo
Nick Kelly/ flickr

Pichi and Avo adopt a thoroughly innovative approach in their artistic fusions, and they define themselves as:

  • Urban artists
  • Contemporary art
  • Mural painting

They trained in fine art and design and met on the graffiti art scene in Valencia, forming the PichiAvo duo in 2007.

It was in April 2019 when they executed the second largest mural in the world in the city of Porto, in collaboration with the celebrated Portuguese artist Vhils, also mentioned in this article.

Later on that year, they created a monumental 26-metre-high sculpture for the Fallas festival in Valencia.

6-. Antonyo Marest, tropical style

Arte al cubo festival
Pasaje de la Plaza de los Cubos. Madrid. Picture by Oscar Guerra/ flickr

Marest combines abstract pop and impossible patterns, including references to the architectural & industrial style developed by the Memphis Group in the 80s (US).

He is a multidisciplinary street artist, and we have observed all around the world his different creations:

  • clothing,
  • album covers,
  • marketing campaigns,
  • interiorism
  • graphic designs

Flamingo and palm tree figures are two noteworthy motifs in his work.

Who is the street artist in Madrid behind the following artworks?

The street art in Madrid is more alive than ever. Hundreds of graffiti writers decorate the city’s walls with their tags, throw-ups and street art decorations.

Check how are some of the most popular & active members of the street artist community in town:

7-. Tiles’ urban art miniatures

Basket of Nean
Sr. Irregular/ flickr

Basket of Nean is a young Madrid based artist who loves to create mosaic images related to one of the most famous sports in the United States, Basketball.

The yellow and purple colors are frequently observed in his artworks, referring to former Los Angeles Lakers player, Koby Bryant.

He recently mentioned on an interview at Madrid Diferente blog,

One of the main reasons why I decided to become a street artist is because I would like any specific street to be different from the rest thanks to my contribution. I would also like you to deviate from your regular path, so that you just visit that street because of the mosaics.

Nean, Alcorcón (Madrid)

8-. Graffiti hands & hearts around the city

El Rey de la Ruina
Aesthetics of Crisis/ flickr

El Rey de la Ruina is a local street artist whose fetiche body parts are people’s hands!

Although he also paints big hearts with a social message.

Why?

It was by the time that he was diagnosed with ‘enlarged heart’ physical disorder that he started spreading his colorful designs all around the city!

These are some of the recent spots where he has painted people’s body parts:

  • Cuatro Caminos area
  • Solar Antonio Grilo (San Bernardo)
  • Sputnik (Vallecas)

9-. Street artist painting blurry pink figures

Gerbos, street artist from El Keller
Mercado de San Fernando. Lavapiés, Madrid. 2016.07

Gerbos is those kind of guys who do not need words to express his feelings.

Instead, he uses color paint to talk to us on the streets!

This local artist collaborates with a street art workshop in Madrid called El Keller, located in one of our favourite neighborhoods, Lavapies.

He has also travelled around Greece and France, painting in warehouses and squat buildings, his favourite ones!

Most of his artworks were painted in press kiosks & stationeries, but there are other places where he has recently worked:

Could you tell us the name of the following street artist from Portugal?

Up until now we talked about the street artist community in Spain, and we also wanted to introduce you to two amazing urban creators born in Portugal.

First one is called Vhils, probably you have already heard about him.

What kind of stuff does he do?

Drilling machine artworks

Vhils, Portugal
Mariate Ovejas/ flickr

Alexandre Farto (1987) became a prolific Portuguese graffiti writer in mid 2000s, and since then he has used a groundbreaking bas-relief carving technique in walls all over the world, both in indoor and outdoor settings:

  • Shanghai, China
  • New York, USA
  • Paris, France

Vhils grew up in Seixal, an industrialised suburb across the river from Lisbon, and was deeply influenced by the transformations brought on by the intensive urban development the country underwent in the 1980s and 1990s.

Who’s the street artist behind this 3D installation?

Bardalo II, Portuguese street artist
Antero Pires/ flick

His name is Bordalo and according to his words “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”.

That’s part of the biography that you can read in his website, where he also uploads updated pictures of the artworks he create around the world.

Bordalo II creates, recreates, assembles and develops ideas with end-of-life materials and tries to relate them to sustainability, ecological and social awareness.

Aren’t they the most beautiful and shocking artworks that you have ever seen?

Our opinion about the street artist community

As a start-up project launched in 2016, we know how difficult it’s to reach to the top of the list.

The most famous street artists already count with the help of professional marketing teams, assistants, TV…but what about the rest?

We would recommend any emergent artist to start with the basics, a facebook/ instagram account, where to publish information, and a blog.

If every urban artist from Madrid we know would dedicate more hours to marketing purposes, they would have more online impact than the one they have now.

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