Can Street Art change the reputation of a city?
I was warned by friends knowing my strong interest about Street Art. Bogotá is nothing like you’ve ever seen before. First it’s a big city, counting close to 9 millions habitants. It is also considered to be the fastest growing city in South America. For years, during the dark years of Colombia and the drug war, Bogotá was quite of a dangerous city. And that reputation stuck to the name.
Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t know the good about Bogotá. The city is culturally rich. It’s home to many museums (my fav is the gold Museum), Universities, Libraries and events which gave it the nickname of “The Athens of South America”. It also kept its old town pretty intact with many painted house fronts and a feel of two centuries ago.
More recently (the last decade or so), Bogotá became an open sky museum and art gallery. Since spray painting on walls has been decriminalised, it opened the door to self expression from local artists. Bogotá started to get noticed and many international artists make a stop there to paint a wall, often covered soon after by other artists. Painting over and over again to practice and master the art.
Walking around the city was quite of an experience. Spotting amazing murals at every corner. It even got overwhelming because of so much talent all over town. Today, for some people, Bogotá a new reputation. It’s not attached to violence to them but to creativity, colors and self-expression. To learn more about the local Street Art culture, I would highly recommend the Graffiti Tour which give you good insight and story about every art piece and artist.
Why would you rent a studio when you have hundreds of gray streets as canvas waiting for you?