Due to a large number of talented artists that chose the streets as their favourite vehicle of expression, Barcelona was once considered the world capital of graffiti. However, since the public (and legal) perception of the art was still very negative at the time, it was considered vandalism, and municipal policies forced the scene to fade into obscurity.
Currently, as society in general sees street art in a different light, there are various Catalan associations that promote and defend the practice, most notably Rebobinart, Bombcelona and Murs Lluires (free walls), with the latter being dedicated to obtaining public space licenses for artists.
Related article: Btoy – a Barcelona street artist
History lessons on street walls
If you’re a fan of street art, a history buff or even just a curious visitor who’d like to see the city through a different perspective, don’t miss out on Cayetana Gomis Fletcher’s graffiti tour of Barcelona. A historian, asset manager and tourist guide, Cayetana will take you through a carefully designed route that displays the history and evolution of the capital of Catalonia and its people through street art – some of it dating back to medieval times!
Each tour is limited to 25 people and is priced at 15€ per person. Starting at Plaça Nova, Cayetana will take you through the neighbourhoods and streets of the Ciutat Vella district, where countless examples of this particular form of artistic expression can be admired. While the route might change as new relevant graffiti emerges, there are three obligatory stops that are always part of the tour – Hospital de la Santa Creu, Santa Llucia and Petritxol.
Throughout the tour, which lasts approximately 2 hours, Cayetana will expand on the meaning of each piece of street art, contextualizing it within the time period in which it was created and relating it to the social, political and economic situations it reflects.
Related article: Exploring Barcelona’s street art
X marks the spot
If you’d rather explore the rich street art legacy of Barcelona on your own, you can do it for free by following Nitzs BCN’s itinerary, which maps out the most important graffiti locations in the city. Their extensive route starts at their hostel and will lead you through the districts of Ciutat Vella, Sant Martí and Sants-Montjuïc. It goes without saying that you should bring a camera along, as you’ll certainly want to take a lot of pictures.
Are you a fan of graffiti? Which one of these tours will you take first? Let us know using the comment box below. Have fun discovering the street art of Barcelona!
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