Street Art Berlin

Street Art Berlin

The city is an open air gallery

– © Miriam Grothaus

These days, you don’t need to go to exclusive galleries or dusty factory halls to see art. The streets serve as open air galleries and everyone is invited to see them. It’s an art form that’s like Berlin itself – quick, innovative and always changing. Most of the art is done illegally, but some of it is commissioned. Whether its done with a brush, paint roller, spray paint, posters, wallpaper paste or stencils, you’ll find graffiti on every imaginable surface in Berlin. Posters, stickers, stencils and graffiti are what’s generally considered to be street art, but its made up of much more than that. Temporary urban space transformations and sculptures in public areas also make up a part of the street art scene.

The districts of Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg are considered to be Berlin’s hot spots for street art. There are so many works on the walls that the streets practically turn into galleries. Street artists from around the world have been coming here since the 90’s, as the high number of neglected walls and easily accessible open spaces present them with ideal conditions. Berlin is establishing itself as the European hub for street art and one of the scene’s most important locations in the world. It would be difficult to imagine certain areas of the city without street art these days.

International artists have made their marks here as well. England’s Banksy, the star of the international street art scene, has sprayed his renowned rat motif on a number of house walls. Celebrities such as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are huge fans of his and pay top dollar for his works. You can also find the work of Blu on Berlin’s facades. This renowned Italian street artist has painted his huge comic-like creatures in London and Milan as well. One of the most present Berlin-based street artists is El Bocho, whose cut outs and stencils are generally inspired by urban living. One of his most present and popular characters is the cat-hating Little Lucy, a paper cutout that gets pasted up all over the place. Each of El Bocho’s hand drawn paper prints reveals something new in the life of Lucy. When you go out on Berlin’s streets, don’t just keep your eyes fixed on the ground - it’s definitely worth it to scan your surroundings and discover all of the street art that’s around you!