In a city like Buenos Aires there is a lot to discover and plenty to do. We know that entrance fees, tips and other travel costs easily add up to an incredible amount. You can save a lot of money by going solo. Most travelers already know about and enjoy free walking tours in incredible cities all around the world. This tour is a stroll through Buenos Aires of another kind. Buenos Aires is not just an incredible city full of mind-blowing, elegant buildings, it is an open air museum for all kinds of art.
Anywhere you look you can find little pieces of unique artwork. At least if you know where to go. There is an amazing street art tour available, and for the taggers reading this — it is absolutely worth the money. If you are in Buenos Aires on a short budget, don’t have a clue about street art but appreciate the beauty of it and just want to wander around and explore a little more we take you on a DIY Street Art Tour!
Where to begin our little paper chase?
Our tour begins more or less where BA’s street art history begins: With a huge piece of artwork called el cuento de los loros by Martín Ron in Villa Urquiza. Martín Ron was born in the neighbourhood Caseros in Buenos Aires and is celebrated as one of the most important street artists and the first who painted whole houses with his works. His style is hyper-realistic and he uses different materials, strong colors and uses images of our everyday lives. With his incredible technique his art seems extremely realistic.
BLU in Buenos Aires
The next massive mural street art is literally just a step away. A huge baby fitted perfectly into the characteristics of the building painted by a famous artist who paints under the name BLU. Not much is known about this great artist only that he is Italian and painted almost everywhere in South America. A like-minded traveler it seems. He is also the creator of the incredible video Muto.
A stroll down Holmberg
The next piece you will see on Holmberg was painted by four friends who all painted themselves as cartoons. Graffiti has a long history in Buenos Aires, and in this case and many others the owner asked the artists to paint their front to prevent others from leaving meaningless tags (All on Holmberg). On Calle Tronador and Nahuel Huapi you can find a more cryptic piece of art by Milu Correch called Bombo. It shows two boys playing bombos. On one of the bombos we find a raven and on the other one a monkey.
Meet Luxor on Estomba
Keep on walking to Estomba and go down Estomba. You will find a beautiful little coffee shop on a corner. On the coffee shops outside you will find an incredible painting from Luxor. Luxor is known for improvising and painting whatever comes to his mind. In this work we see a pigeon which can be interpreted as a symbol for freedom in contrast to the window bars of the building. He uses indigenous and inca elements in his work to remind the viewer of the past.
Marvel at the incredible work of PRIMO
On the height of Ibera in Coghlan you will find your first work of PRIMO, a pair of cousins who address the afro-cultural roots in the Argentinian society. The painting shows Joseph Daleya famous musician from Harlem who not only shared his incredible music with the world but also passed on his musical understanding to the younger generation. Another work of Primo can be found only a few steps away showing a beautiful girl from African descent. The cousins focus on faces and expressions of people from distinctive cultural origin and provide their walls with a soul and an identity. On the corner of Jose P. Tamborini you will stumble upon another great piece of Martín Ron showing a massive colourful peacock. Here you can see the details very clearly and get a good understanding of how much work street art is.
On Valderrama you can admire a dancing couple painted by Alice Pasquini who is known for her colorful and touching murals. The colors she uses seem to compliment the natural surroundings.
Teamwork that blows your mind
Going down Naon between Pedraza and Tamborini you will find a whole selection of murals one greater than the other. The first one shows a great piece of teamwork called Castle in the Sand of two artists we already know. Martín Ron und Fintan Magee painted children peacefully playing in the sand of a beach. This idyllic world only exists in their very own bubble and the bubble is carried by a heavily armed turtle which shows the real world. What you want to see in this is up to you. Next to this great work you will find the face of an indigenous boy with the typical indigenous face paint. He seems to be looking right into your soul. Once again Primo have given a soul to a wall. Next to this one you find a rather impressionistic piece of street art showing a homeless person hugging his dog on the facade of a shelter for the homeless.
These are very great examples for street art in Buenos Aires. You have now successfully made your way through 2 barrios and there is a lot more to explore. Walk around in Buenos Aires with your eyes open, because street art is beautiful but evanescent. It is alive. It appears. It changes and it vanishes. Appreciate it as long as you can. If you know any other places in Buenos Aires with incredible street art, please share your information in the comments.
Originally published on Ailola by Cassandra Timm on November 13, 2016.