Barcelona and art have always gone hand in hand. One of the things that most characterises the city are the great pieces of street art that can be seen throughout Barcelona. Street art arrived in Barcelona at the hands of national and international artists some time ago.
Over the years, our neighbourhoods and streets have been filled with colour and messages. If you don’t want to spend money on museums in Barcelona, come with us to discover the best Barcelona graffiti and street artworks in the open air!
Below you’ll find the best places to find street art in Barcelona.
What about joining a street art tour in Barcelona? Here’s a great one to check out.
Ready to discover the best street art in Barcelona?
Here are a few places to find artworks of the most popular Barcelona street artists.
El Raval: The nucleus of urban art in Barcelona
Today, most of Barcelona’s urban art is concentrated in El Raval, one of the best neighbourhoods with the greatest graffiti tradition. Surrounding the MACBA (Museo Contemporáneo de Arte Moderno de Barcelona), we can find truly fantastic works.
Right next to the MACBA is the Keith Haring mural. It was painted in 1989 in an abandoned building in the Raval neighbourhood. This piece seeks to highlight the importance of preventing AIDS, a disease that the artist himself suffered with throughout his life. Haring died just a year after painting this design.
Other works of urban art that you will find are those proposed by artists such as Sixe Paredes. This Spanish artist painted the Mural Joan Miró, a work of an abstract and figurative nature.
Poble Sec: Electrifying creativity
After El Raval, the Poble Sec neighbourhood is another of the neighbourhoods loaded with exhibitions by different artists. It offers plenty of outdoor spaces for urban artists to unleash their creativity.
A clear example of this is the Garden of the Three Chimneys. Its name comes from the fact that in this space three tall chimneys rise from what was once La Canadiense, a power plant that supplied electricity to the entire Barcelona metropolitan area. In this park, any street art enthusiast can paint their works, after having previously registered online or by phone.
Gothic Quarter: In love with art
Walking through the narrow streets of the city centre you will discover some of the pieces of Barcelona street art that the Catalan capital hides. One of the works that stands out the most in Ciutat Vella is the mosaic El Beso de la Libertad. This work by Joan Fontcuberta, inaugurated in 2014, is made up of a multitude of tesserae of photos sent from people of Barcelona that altogether form two kissing mouths.
This photomosaic, also known as “The world begins with each kiss”, was created for the 300th anniversary of the fall of Barcelona during the War of Spanish Succession and has the following phrase as its motto: “The sound of a kiss is not as loud as that of a cannon, but its echo lasts much longer.”
In the Poblenou neighbourhood there are several urban art spots with some of the most attractive works in the city. Which was once of the most powerful industrial areas in Spain, but looks very different today.
Today, modern buildings and skyscrapers coexist with the remains of old factories, which have been converted into the perfect canvas for artists.
One of the examples of Poblenou street art is the work “The Closing of the Circle”, by the Italian artist Crisa, where she reflects on the natural elements and the balance that persists with urban environments.
Another of the great Barcelona street artists who have left their mark on the Poblenou neighborhood is Jorge Rodríguez Gerada. His work “Panorama” was presented for the OpenWall 2015 conference, and consists of a 29-meter-high composite portrait that unites the facial features of ten different women from the neighbourhood. It is a tribute to celebrate the local community, and aims to remember the importance of the role of women, humanity and the importance of each individual in a world as changing as today’s.
To finish our route through Poblenou, we want to present the striking mural by the artist Borondo, entitled “Fer Llenya”. This expressionist-style work represents the Castells, the traditional human towers of Catalonia. Although the expressive brushstrokes and colors of Borondo make us think that it is a simple representation of this festivity, we can intuit from the background elements that there is a message behind it.
Be that as it may, these pieces are just a small part of the urban art that you will find in the streets if you want to travel to Barcelona. Not only that, the truth is that our city has always been a place of expression for many artists, from abstract urban art, to majestic modernist works to touch the sky like the Sagrada Familia basilica. Barcelona is a city that captivates you and you will surely discover some hidden gems that will make you fall in love!