Graffiti or gorgeous? Public art isn’t just a way for an artist to express him or herself, but it can create a more beautiful environment for everyone. While some artists create beautiful street art that appeals to the masses, others work is meant to be thought-provoking. And although creating street art can be a costly crime, there is something about it that keeps the artist coming back for more. You won’t believe some of these incredible works of art.
Queen Street West Angel Wings
Toronto may not be known for its art, but it sure should be! Located on the super hip Queen Street West, this mural of angel wings conveys both the tone and the youthfulness of the city. Be sure to take your picture at this mural outside of The Brooklyn Bar.
The Artist: Durothethird
The mind behind these angel wings is the super-cool Toronto graffiti artist Durothethird. Durothethird started creating murals in the sixth grade. His first piece came out in 1993. This guerilla artist is also a musician and photographer, which shows that there is literally nothing that this guy can’t-do.
“Take Your Pick”
This mural in Fort-de-France, Martinique is one that mixes both nature and man-made materials. This mural depicts natural elements of the Earth and how they affect the humans that live on this planet. The depiction also gives reference to African culture and its beauty.
The Artist: Nuxuno
Nuxuno Xan is a muralist from Paris, France and he was previously a student IRAVM art school. This artist’s strengths are in his ability to make you think about how nature affects humanity. He is also very experienced in mixing mediums to create something visibly enticing.
The Artist: Seth
According to the Parisian people, Seth is a magical artist. Not only is he one of the best street artists, but he encompasses the youthful and loving feeling of the city of Paris. Seth uses color to remind us that even during the cold, grey months of the year, Paris is another type of beautiful all together.
Seth is a French artist who mixes both dreamlike elements and childlike drawings. He uses kids as models in his artwork to make his point about the effects of the world onto the mind of a child. This childlike imagery is also apparent in the bright colors that he uses.
The Artist: Banksy
If you know anything about graffiti, then you have definitely heard about Banksy. This guerilla artist has no filters when it comes to his satirical artwork and he is always breaking boundaries. He has also made clear efforts to make street art into high-brow art.
“The West Bank”
One of Banksy’s quasi-anonymous pieces of art is known as “The West Bank.” Located in Israel, the work was discovered by a passerby after Banksy had left the scene. The painting shows an innocent-looking child in a pink dress patting down a police officer whose hands are on the wall in front of him while his machine gun rests to the side. The piece is representative of the innocent children caught in the middle of strife and political discord.
Banksy’s No Trespassing
This list would not be complete without many Banksy art pieces. He is the literal king of graffiti art and has started to examine what it really means to be an artist. This “No Trespassing” piece is one of the greatest works of art in the modern world.
“No Trespassing” shows us that people do not own actually land, and that imperialism has ruined many different native cultures. The trespassing refers to the idea that land should not belong to anyone but the people who were born there. It also shows the emphasis on culture and where people are from.
The Artist: Smates
Bart “Smates” Smeets is a Belgian street artist who is constantly trying to mix animals into the grey concretes that make up our city. This artist has been putting up animals in the middle of cities to try to bring back the natural element into our busy lives. We can’t thank him enough for it.
“Great White Shark”
This creative piece by Smates tries to blend nature and the concrete world. The best artists in the world try to make beauty out of ugly situations and Smates truly does this. The artist completely changes the pillar into an aquarium.
The Artist: Pejac
Pejac is a declared poetry artist, meaning that his work holds more meaning than just the face value. His work provides people with a metaphorical look at the world, proving that truth can be shown even in art. Pejac is one of the most famous artists in Spain with many exhibitions around Europe.
“Leaf Me Alone”
Pejac is a Spanish artist who tries to envision a world that is completely natural. His murals and graffiti are also incredibly simple. This beautiful piece shows that the artist is the creator of his natural environment and that we can, if we try, create our own lives.
The Artist: Flix
Flix is one of the more forward-thinking artists in Caracas, mixing both ancient Aztec patterns and modern geography. This mix of two cultures makes his work more than beautiful and shows that art can have many different inspirations.
Venezuelan artist Flix is one of the funnest guys on our list. His artwork and murals are more technical. He gets to play around a little more with color and concept. His robots are seen around the streets around Caracas and they fuse elements of Aztec art and modern day technology.
The Artist: Ernest Zacharevic
Ernest Zacharevic is a Lithuanian-born artist who combines fine art and street art tactics to make street art incredibly beautiful. This artist’s amazing talent shows that he can combine what people want and what high-brow art is. He also mixes the elements of the Earth and man-made creations.
This piece by Ernest Zacharevic was created as a tribute to the great mural and street artists of Russia. If you look too quickly then you might miss this play on sights. The girl peeking from the concrete shows that we are continually behind nature and are also in charge of it.
The Artist: Isaac Cordal’s
Isaac Cordal is a Spanish artist who uses simple ready-mades and thoughtful placement of them to create an incredibly interesting thought. Cordal creates imagination through simple items to try and impact pedestrian thinking. He proves that art can still be amazing without being grand.
The ready-made art sculpture was very popular during modern art movement of 1940, and Cordal is bringing it back. You might look at this piece and simply see just a sieve, however, we can see that this is a play on the imagination and what nature actually is. The man-made piece is one of the best on our list.
The Artist: Stik
Stik started unofficially painting in the East London area in 2001 where he created stick figures to try to convey the powerful emotions of regular people. This guy also frequently collaborates with hospitals and charities to try and bring art to people who are less fortunate.
“Love is Love”
This London-based artist wants to prove that love is something that has no bounds. The art is filled with simplicity that shows love should not be based on gender or ethnicity. The street art just proves that no matter what, love is simply love and no one should have an opinion of someone else’s perception of love.
The Artist: Martin Ron
Martin Ron showcases most of his talents on the streets of Buenos Aires and proves that surrealism is not dead. The movement that Ron is trying to bring back to life conveys the world on different planes, and proves that we can all have different destinies.
This Argentinian artist is a surrealist who puts together the real and the imaginary to create a story. This human hand illustrates that the artist believes that humans are simply made to try to fit into the societal machine. This mural is a play on the idea of what human work is. This is a truly breathtaking piece.
The Artist: Mr. Dheo
Mr. Dheo is one of Portugal’s finest and has been in the business for around fifteen years. His work is conceptual, but it also tries to create a satirical view of the world. He also has worked with many of the world’s finest businesses and international brands.
“Drunk Driving Warning”
Drunk driving is one of the most serious things that someone can do and its is also one of the worst things that can happen to an innocent bystander. This warning art shows a little girl in the cars, symbolizing her death at the hands of a drunk driver. We can see why this art is so incredibly powerful.
The Artist: ROA
ROA is the street name for this artist who comes from Ghent, Belgium. However, this guy hasn’t just stayed in one place — he actually has work in countries all over Europe. This street artist is known for creating art with incredibly distinct detail on a remarkably large and grand scale.
“The Lizard King”
This Puerto Rican work is one of the best realist art pieces in the world, and it has a great sense of complete details. ROA’s “Lizard King” is incredibly detail oriented and it actually looks like a real, massive lizard. This lizard proves that detail can still be seen in a grand scale.
The Artist: Mr. Thoms
Mr. Thoms is an Italian graffiti artist who proves that talent and fun can make some seriously great art! Most of his work is on the cartoonish side and is more surreal than realistic. His cartoons are incredibly distinctive and show his own fun personality.
Now we know that this sounds disgusting, however, the detail on this artwork is actually incredibly amazing. This cartoon-like piece is fun and uses pops of color to make the art really come out of the ground. The use of grass as the hair for this piece also proves that nature is a key element in street art.
A Collaborative Effort.
There is not one predominant artist who has contributed to Five Pointz, and that’s what makes it so beautiful. The entire building is covered with different artists’ work, which proves that all different types of visionaries can come together to create one cohesive piece. However, in sad news, the building is actually being taken down by construction.
Five Pointz is one of the coolest things to come out of New York City and the borough of Queens in a long time. Five Pointz is a guerilla art mecca and proves that art can come from the neighborhood as a community, rather than just one person. The 200,000-square-foot Aerosol Art Center is completely covered with graffiti from every amateur on the block.
The Artist: Dome
Dome is a German street artist who began to study the art of spray painting in the early 2000s. This artist has been classified as an avant-garde and surreal artist. This creation of the unreal and the mix of the reality proves that this world can be changed to whatever we want.
“Under The Bridge”
This German sculptor proves that you can truly make something beautiful and artistic out of nothing. Under the bridge, one of the pillars was created to look like a hand was holding up the bridge. This could have also meant that we as humans are holding up the cement in our lives.
The Artist: MTO
MTO is currently one of the best artists in the graffiti scene. Not only is he a painter, but he also is one of the greatest visionaries of his time. His installations play on both view and dimension, meaning that he uses different mediums in all of his art to truly create something surreal.
“Le Grande Jeu”
This French collaboration is one of the coolest ones on our list. This piece is inspired by the French surrealist movement of the same name and the idea that the world is completely different than what we imagined. This piece also uses pieces of different dimensions to truly bend the eye view.
The Artist: Olek
This woman is one of the coolest artists on our list, doing something conventional to make an unconventional statement. She takes what would be considered as a feminine pastime and makes it satirical against the world. Currently, she is based in New York City, and she is taking over the big apple.
This lady isn’t a painter, but she is one of the coolest street artists of all time. Whatever object you can imagine, Olek might just crochet over it. In this piece, she has actually crocheted over a cab in somewhat of a rave camouflage. No object is safe from this amazing artist.
The Artist: Vinie
Vinie is from Toulouse, France and she has been drawing and painting since she was a child. She has been an artistic poet since moving to Paris in 2007 and has proved that women can truly run the world. Her art proves that women can show the world its true beauty.
“Green Haired Girl”
The French street artist shows us again how nature can be used to create something incredibly beautiful. The girl is very sensual and sultry. The artist intends to convey that both the feminine woman and nature are both things that we should notice as sexual. She proves that we have to take care of mother nature as well.