Street Art in Buenos Aires: A Reflection Of past, present, and future

Street Art is highly respected and valued in Buenos Aires; it gives artists a way to express and make statements about their history, political and social issues, and their struggles. Street art is a medium for communication. It enables the community to learn and discover new things about themselves and the world.

Untitled depicts a depressed young boy holding paintbrush. The dark shadows upon this child’s eyes and clothing creates a feeling of depression and hopelessness as if the child is forced to work. The contrasting values of light and dark shadows emphasize the focal point - the child’s face. This piece alludes to many children who perform labor jobs instead of being going to school, playing, or just being a child.
Untitled depicts a young child wearing a shirt saying "jucio y castigo" meaning judgment and punishment, while holding a poster of a woman. The use of line in this piece resembles fingerprints, representing many who protested against the government. By adding a red ring around jucio y castigo, the artist is able to emphasize emphasizes the need for judgment and punishment against the military dictatorship and especially to those who kidnapped men and women for detention, torture, and extermination.
Blu Mural in La Boca, Buenos Aires depicts a world falling apart and millions of jigsaw people are being flung into space. During this time, their peso was de-valued and many were well below the poverty line. Blue effectively captures the nature of their economy through the use of saturation. The soft saturated green color around the planet represents a falling economy, but the color fades away as these jigsaw people get lost in space. This piece expresses the anger and fear that many Argentinians faced when their economy was falling significantly.
Blu Mural, Monserrat, Buenos Aires depicts thousands of individuals with their eyes and mouths covered by an endless Argentinian flag, while a dark figure, wearing a suite and the Argentinian Flag, stands above them. Blu emphasizes the dark figure in the back and the Argentinian flag by contrasting this figure in comparison to the majority. By emphasizing these key elements, the artist is effectively able to express his thoughts on how people blindly following figures of authority without thinking critically to the words or actions of these authority figures.
Fintan Magee’s piece depicts a scene where this young man is hiking while carrying a house on his back. Although this piece seems to be very bright and friendly because of the use of the pink and orange colors, emphasis is drawn to the focal point of the image – the dark, colorless house on the young man’s back. Magee uses dark colors and a shallow space in order to express his concern over housing shortage in Argentina. Many families struggle to get appropriate housing and they must travel to other cities in order to find some shelter. In his piece, Magee shows that there is no reason for a shortage because there is so much land available.
In his piece, Dame uses both color and dynamic movement in order for the viewers to read this story from beginning to end in this case right to left. It starts off with an airstrike launched on a Muslim country. Homes are destroyed and children are fleeing from the helicopter gun. Unfortunately, not everyone survives; at the end of the story, parents are crying in pain while holding their dead children. By implementing these different elements, Dame is able to make everyone aware of the negative effects of this war.
Jaz, Colegiales depicts two Minotaurs named Teta and Salta, both of whom are covered in blood while facing one another. Jaz painted this mural as a tribute to his friends, Teta and Salta, who were violently killed as children by the police. The emphasis on the bull’s head as well as the blood across their bodies makes this piece extremely powerful. Minotaurs represent strength, but also fear and destruction. Therefore, this piece serves to empower the community as well as remind them of the terror, struggle, and violence that they have faced.
This multi-layered piece from Cabaio depicts a number of men who are holding up signs saying “Queremos Pintura Ahora” meaning “we want paint now”. Cabaio contrasts these protestors against the colorful background in order to bring awareness on the absence of stable employment, declining living, and poverty in Argentina.
In their piece, El Marian and Gualicho feature two boys with catapults aiming it at anyone who comes into their area. In 2012, hundreds of buildings in Villa Urquiza were demolished only to make way for a new motorway that was never built. This mural is alludes to the military dictatorship of 1976-1983. El Marian and Gualicho created this mural as a reminder to the community that no one is allowed to dictate their lives. Therefore, two boys point their catapults at the focal point, the viewer, making us reflect on who we are and essentially humbling us.
This metro station piece in Plaza Miserere depicts an unhappy man surrounded by so much technology; his eyes, brain, and ears are all wired to physical air conditioning units. On the outside, however, there are two men representing the corporate world and another representing a casual lifestyle. This surrealist project reflects man’s struggle for happiness, success, and purpose. Man relies so much on technology that he struggles in balancing between success and happiness.
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This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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