Urban Art in Lisboa 5: urban riverside

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In the last few years, Lisboa has been increasingly known throughout the world as a city of urban art. Dedicated galleries, street art shops and other original projects have been popping up all over the map to bring this often overlooked way of artistic intervention to a larger public. National artists are recognized world-wide, while international names travel here to leave their mark. New projects appear every day, while others are painted over or destroyed as the city grows. Artistic graffiti is now proudly embraced by oficial institutions, and actively too. And in the center of all of this, the mural paintings.

This series will give you a few tours around Lisboa, focusing on some of the best works you can find. To really be able to follow it is best to have a city map at hand! This is the last trip in this series, number 5, taking you from Alcântara to Belém. You can also find some other trips of this series in the trendiest zone, the nearby neighbourhoods, the upper-city avenues, or going down the city hill.

For this last tour we will start near the Alcântara-Terra train station, in Avenida de Ceuta. Right there you can immediately see two pieces on the other side of the road. Up the street there is a piece by Bordallo II, portuguese artist, showing a shoal of fish made of trash, and below there is a mural by MAR, showing a colorful, surrealist struggle.

Find a way to Calçada da Tapada, a street that the 25 de Abril bridge passes over. Next to a parking lot, the pillars that hold the bridge have been covered with great works by Klit, Mosaik, Regg, Kruella d'Enfer, Oze Arv and Tamara Alves.

Go back the other way to get to Rua de Cascais. You should see a long wall completely painted over, with one of local street artist Vhils's carved faces standing out. Another one of Bordalo II's works, a butterfly, is around too. This wall has been used regularly used for different projects and events of urban art.

At this point you should make a small detour: go across the street to the small Alcântara-Mar train station in Avenida da Índia. There is an easy-to-miss entrance to an underground tunnel, taking you to the Santo Amaro dock. The tunnel walls are filled with representations of local monuments and sights. And something else, keep following Avenida da Índia's sidewalk, with the train tracks on your left. You will see another one of Vhils's works, and a fantastic painting by How and Nosm, New-York based artists, on either side of an old building.

Now, go back the same way, make a turn to Rua da Cozinha Económica and right before the Calvário Square, turn left to Rua Rodrigues Faria. Follow it to the end to enter the Lx Factory area. Inside you can find many great murals of a variety of artists like Derlon, Uivo, Bordalo II, Miiio, Mar and many others. Not far away sits Village Underground, a structure of old maritime containers that went under a colorful aestethic renovation by akaCorleone.

To get to Belém, enjoy a little stroll by Rua da Junqueira, or if you prefer to see the river, follow Avenida da Índia. Either way, go west until you get to Largo Marquês Angeja, located just before the Museu Nacional dos Coches and in front of one of the MAAT Museum's facades. There you will find a green area surrounded by a stone wall, chosen for an intervention by the ARM Collective, who payed hommage to Luís de Camões and his Lusíadas. The artists reinterpreted fragments of the portuguese epic poem in a long and impressive mural.

For the last stretch, and to finish the trip like we started, with a work by Bordalo II, go across the gardens of Belém until you reach CCB, in Praça do Império. On the right side of the building sits one of the artist's most famous works, a large racoon in the wild recreated using trash and dumped materials. It never goes unnoticed!

This piece marks the end of the fifth tour and this series on Urban Art in Lisboa. As always, check out our other suggestions, and also Galeria de Arte Urbana for a regularly updated gallery of the oficial interventions throughout the city. See you around!

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The author

Vasco Casula

Vasco Casula

I am Vasco and I come from Portugal. Alongside playing guitar and working on animation films, I like to discover and let you discover places, such as Portugal!

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