Street art is the epitome of an attitude of audacity and personal creative spirit. So much more than simply “graffiti”, street art transforms the urban landscape and makes a thought-provoking statement about its time and its place.
We are all familiar with the very famous Banksy, but here are a few other global street artists of note…
- Mr Brainwash – Mr Brainwash, aka Thierry Guetta, is a Los Angeles-based, French-born street artist who was introduced to the art form by his cousin, street artist Invader. He started out videographing street artists before evolving into one himself. His work is strongly inspired by that of Banksy; in 2009 Mr Brainwash was paid by Madonna to create the cover of her album, Celebration.
- Magda Sayeg – Creating a street art form with a difference, Magda Sayeg is a Houston artist who founded “yarn bombing”, a type of urban art that uses knitted and crocheted yarn to create urban installations. Cold and sterile public spaces are reclaimed and brightened; for example, Sayeg’s knitted covered bus in Mexico City and a crocheted covered London Bus.
- Shepard Fairey – American street artist Shepard Fairey emerged as an activist and urban illustrator from the skateboarding scene, where he illustrated T-shirts and skateboards. He became notable for his 2008 election Barack Obama “Hope” poster, and he is now one of the United States’ most influential and renowned street artists. He is a prolific artist whose very popular work has been exhibited widely all over the world.
- Stik – London-based British street artist Stik is renowned for his large stick figures, originating in northeast London’s areas of Hackney and Shoreditch. Having been funded to conduct graffiti workshops for budding street artists, he works on both authorized and unauthorized artworks. He fiercely protects his true identity, and has worked with Amnesty International, Reclaim the Streets, and other organizations.
- Ash – Known as Ash, Victor Ash is a Parisian street artist based in Copenhagen. He has been active for thirty years in the street art scene, exhibiting around the world. His work has evolved dramatically over the years, with his newest works being of a lithographic style.
These five artists are just a tiny tip of the global street artist iceberg, with many more worthy of mention. Who is your favorite street artist?