Street Art in Atlanta
Once upon a time, street art was associated with guerilla works and tags on abandoned buildings and dilapidated walls. Today, however, street art is an organized and sometimes publicly funded aspect of most cities. Atlanta has a long history of revolution, particularly towards ending racial discrimination, and street art has always played an important role in expressing ideas and sharing messages through creative styles and subject matters.
Throughout history, street art has been used not only as a way to brighten up certain spaces but also as a political device. What we now know as modern street art really began taking shape during the 1960s through to the 1980s in New York City. During the 1980s, the punk scene began to collide with street art, being used to advertise clubs and band gigs. This was also a time when artists like Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, who would later become iconic and very commercially successful, were creating more conceptual and politically driven works. Beyond the Big Apple, Atlanta has often been considered one of the best destinations to see incredible works of public art, particularly those highlighting Black artists and talent.
As a popular location for street art, it is not surprising that Atlanta has been at the forefront of many organizations. Living Walls, the City Speaks is a street art conference that first began 10 years ago. Events like these allow independent artists to gain funding for their community projects. Living Walls states that they aim to utilize the public power of art as an economic and social force for artists to build a portfolio and workflow but also to create more sustainable and livable spaces for the city of Atlanta. Other initiatives include the Outerspace Project and Forward Warrior.
A more recent initiative was born from the #BlackLivesMovement, which has garnered a huge following across the country and Atlanta has been no different. The Civic Walls Project, which began in 2020, is building off the movement by uniting notable black street artists and muralists to create various works around Atlanta based on race, addressing action, and dismantling the issue of racism in the United States. Six works have recently been unveiled throughout the city. If you’re in need of transport assistance then check out our vehicle options and we can provide car service in Atlanta to all of the most recent artworks in air-conditioned comfort. We even have a bus if you want to bring the cousins or the whole basketball team!
Apart from the newer works, there are a ton of must-see places for street art in Atlanta that have become widely known and loved by locals and visitors alike. For a personalized Atlanta city tour, get in touch with us and we can help you plan the perfect day with a local Atlanta tour guide. Here is a quick list of some of our favorite spots:
- Atlanta Beltline – follow the Eastside Trail to see works by some of Atlanta’s most iconic artists such as HENSE, Peter Ferrari, and Greg Mike, as well as some great spots for grabbing a drink or a bite to eat.
- Old Fourth Ward – known for its nightlife, this area is also home to some incredible works in some unexpected locations across bridges or beneath underpasses. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled!
- Edgewood Ave – a special mention needs to be made to Fabian Williams, who is the artist behind Paragraphilizer, Contraception and other works that explore the complexities of Black history in the U.S. while educating viewers of his murals at the same time.
- Cabbagetown – once an industrial area, Wylie Street and Inman Park have become an art haven, particularly since Forward Warrior began using the area as their mural base. After building up an appetite from exploring, check out some restaurants around here as well.
- Little Five Points – this suburb has an undeniably cool vibe thanks to its record shops, bar scene, and funky eclectic stores. But the charm of Little Five Points also has its many iconic murals to be grateful for. This is a must-see for any visitor to Atlanta.
If you’re eager to discover more of Atlanta or want to combine a personalized tour with our popular Atlanta history tour of Black History & Civil Rights, then get in touch today! We love sharing everything this city has to offer with locals and travelers alike.