What is street art and how should young people use it to embellish a city?

picture in new york about what is street art

Art is something incredible which makes our world even more beautiful and complex. Through this cultural movement, in all its forms, human beings may express feelings and emotions. They may also send messages, communicate with others, and develop personal abilities. In the same vein, what is street art movement like?

In addition to the best known and traditional forms of art, modern trends brought with them an important form of artistic expression. You may consider it as a form of contemporary art. Let’s get to know it better thourhg its different kinds:

  • sculpture,
  • photography,
  • painting,
  • design,
  • music and dance,

When and where did it appear? What is street art?

famous graffiti
John Lenon mural photographed by Nick Fewings / Unsplash

Urban Art is an underground movement found in street wise spaces. It manifests itself through interventions, performances, graffiti and theatre, among others. This artistic expression, today spread throughout the world, appeared in the United States in the late 60s and early 70s. It has a dynamic and ephemeral characteristic, which can be immortalized by photography. Would you be able then to create your of definition of what is street art?

Its actions take place in public settings and they interact directly with individuals. They generally use large urban surfaces, such as building faccades, where there is an intense circulation of people and cultural diversity.

Consequently, citizens end up having access to art without having to go to cultural centers. As a matter of fact, urban art represents the meeting of life with art. This connection occurs naturally while citizens move around the city.

In addition to the inherent beauty that is present in this type of artistic expression, street art inspires people in many ways. For instance, many designers from worldwide companies, such as Demarca, are influenced by graffiti to create their artworks.

What is street art and its movement doing with graffiti?

tags and throw ups are often used to describe what is street art
Photo by Yonghyun Lee /Unsplash

A graffiti is an inscription made on walls, which has existed since the Roman Empire. Although painting on walls and open air surfaces has existed for 45,000 years, it is still used by young adults and teenagers who are interested in learning what is street art.

Urban art lovers classify Graphite as a calligraphic inscription. They use these drawings with a purpose, becoming famous. Despite its many styles, it is almost impossible to remain indifferent to graffiti’s quality and techniques.

Seen in the past as mere vandalism, it’s nowadays considered by many art gallery owners and professionals within the industry as a type of art. For instance, many city councils are promoting street art through curated programs, festivals and meet-ups. There are even specific spots in town where graffiti writers may freely paint without a fine’s risk.

Graffiti and street art facts

different colors are used to define what is street art
Photo by Kelcy Gatson/ Unsplash
  1. Street performances do not always receive permissions
  2. The illustrations help people identify a certain spot
  3. According to some people, both cultural movements may affect negatively any given neighborhood (see gentrification)
  4. Famous urban artists make big quantities of money
  5. Graffiti is to young people what urban art is for hipsters
  6. Generally, local governing bodies spend their budgets in prosecuting rather than educating.
  7. There are companies who offer workshops and guided visits
  8. Artists and supporters share their photographies and videos on social media
  9. It conveys strong messages, usually related to equity, justice or climate change
  10. 3D artworks are the most impressive ones!

Poetry, the soul’s best way of expression!

graffiti message written on a wall
Picture taken in Melbourne, Australia by Annie Spratt /Unsplash

Definining what is street art could be done in several ways. Even if we were talking about graffiti, we couldn’t forget about the poetry, so often written on the walls and alleys. It makes people reflect about life in general terms. Is there anything worrying you at the moment?

Any form of spontaneous expression in the urban landscape might be considered street art. From billboards with loose poetry to words drawn on walls, poems are always striking. How many phrases on these written walls aren’t already business cards from populated cities? Poetry does also marks the setting. Wouldn’t you agree?

These loose words that jumped from the paper to the city walls, posters boards, and corners are also one of the most photographed styles. People identify themselves with the message. That’s the case of Neorrabioso, Spain’s most famous graffiti poet. He loves writting messages on trash containers in Madrid city.

Could Living Statues be part of the discussion?

human figures in a live performance
Picture by Elizabeth Jamieson/ Unsplash

Widely found in large cities as a form of tourist entertainment, living statues perform almost impossible positions with their bodies. They remain static for a long time, with just small movements. They are usually painted and characterized.

According to historians and investigations, the first reports of a living statue come to us from the ancient Greek theater, where in certain situations, the actors made imitative poses of statues. Later on, during the Renaissance, representations of immobile groups appeared, willing to show spectators living pictures.

Art continued to grow and develop, and in the 1920s, the dance industry accepcted physical stillness for the first time. Subsequently, the techniques of the living statue continued and improved over the decades, perpetuated and perfected by several artists. In 1987, António Santos aka Staticman started his creations of living statues on the street (Rambla, Barcelona) and in 1988 he broke the Guinness record of immobility (15h, 2min, 55 sec).

It is usual to see nowadays these incredible artists at work around the city centers’ most visited locations. There are festivals of living statues in several countries. Thus it become a recognized form of art. Comparable to a driving force for the local tourists.

Other ways to understand what is street art

In addition to the highlights mentioned above, the description of what is street art would not be completed without live performances! Multidisciplinary artists play an important role in the cultural movement. Not only them, but actors, comedians, acrobats, dancers and many others who perform in the greatest world stage. The streets! It is open air and involves the spontaneous audience.

Posters, sticker art, and installations of objects on the streets are also known forms of urban art.

Cooltourspain’s opinion about what is street art

Similarly to what we have done in previous articles about what is street art, we could perfectly define it as an artistic way of expression which takes the street as canvas.

What about you? What is the most striking street art you have seen to date? To appreciate all its kinds, you must keep an open mind, enjoying the message that the artist wants to tell you! Have fun enjoying every detail!

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