If you have ever been to the Big Apple, then you’ll know that the enormous melting pot of a city is filled with astoundingly talented artists, from graphic designers working for huge companies to famous photographers snapping shots in their Soho studios. There is so much opportunity and so much talent that the streets themselves often go unnoticed. However, if you choose to look closely, you’ll find that artwork comes in forms other than the painted canvases on display in the galleries.
Graffiti is often overlooked as an art form. Sometimes this is justifiable, particularly when the sources are rebellious kids spray painting words with no purpose or concept in mind. But sometimes graffiti, and street art in general, can be more than just a jumble of spray painted words—it can be a mural, a chalk drawing, or a sculpture that provides a strong visual message and leaves an impact. Some of the most talented artists in the world are street artists and seeking out their work can make a visit to the city that much more fun!
A great place to start would be the Bushwick Collective. It’s an outdoor collection of street artists’ work, and it displays work from around the world. Many abandoned spaces, alleys, and sections of the Bronx, especially the South Bronx, contain phenomenal examples of street art. The L.I.S.A. Project in Little Italy is a collection of murals, large and small, taking over a space of walls outside. The R. Houston Bowery Wall has been painted over and over again by artists such as Keith Haring.
These are just a few examples of amazing street art in New York City. Almost anywhere you go when you walk around the city you will see some form of street art, but it’s your choice to either walk past it or take the time to admire the skill and purpose of the artists behind it.