by Lucas Aresin
Maybe you have already read about the Colorful City Festival, where countless artists use the city as their canvas to get creative and transform the brick walls into towering expressions of art. It's great to see that Budapest allows this creativity to be expressed publicly. It shows that it is is alive, full of ideas, and not at all opposed to the open expression of art. One of the murals can even be brought to life through the power of augmented reality – and your smartphone! We think it is time to revisit and review the ten most popular artworks through our digtal exhibition of street art in Budapest.
Busy City - Rákóczi bridge, Buda side
Under Rákóczi bridge, curious visitors can now find a 200-square-meter large colorful painting by Dorottya Jakócs that is yet again so different from the previous entries: Bringing its own, unique style, it shows a sunny paradise full of lush, green bushes and ferns, being torn apart by two goddess-like figures who set fire to the roofs and rip towers, as tall as the actual lamp-posts next to the painting, out of the ground. In the end, it's another skyline for Budapest, and it is large, impressively colorful, and well made.
Love thy Neighbor - Dob street 40
If you stand too close, you might only see colors, dots, and lines, but if you step back a little and ponder Luke Embden's (UK) work from the distance, you can read the quotes: "Love will tear us apart" and "Looking for love in all the wrong places". Considering that this can be found in Budapest's party quarter, let's just say that 'loving thy neighbor' may actually happen once in a while.
Poseidon - Nagydiófa street 12
Long before Aquaman, Poseidon was the god of the sea, and he still stands tall to this day on a 230-square-meter mural by Spanish artist Spok and French artist Korse. He's the protector of all sea life, and his austere glare will let you know that he is not to be joked with. But there is more to this mural than just Poseidon himself – you'll find a tentacled elephant, a rabbit with a cocktail, and a giant straw. Like a true legend, Poseidon finds his place among today – both in the painting, and in the city. p.s. This mural will be gone soon.
Blue in Green - Lenhossék street 43
Two Polish artists perpetuated themselves in this underwater city inhabited by strange, humanoid creatures sitting on the desolate buildings like kids sit on plastic chairs. You can almost perfectly imagine their slow, ghostlike movements as they wade through the ocean that now engulfs this once human enclave. Be careful not to get drowned by the uncanny beauty of this artwork. If you want to see it as a metaphor for an overwhelming pressure in today's society, or just as a surreal work of art is up to you.
Urban Style - Nagydiófa street 12
A female by the water – a new incarnation of the Lorelei? This 240-square-meter mural by one Russian artist by the name of Andrey Adno shows a 'layered' figure. Her face is red and blue, like a sunset almost gone. Her body reflects the water of the river. It's a stunning representation of Budapest – multi-facetted, beautiful, artistic. The vibrant colors bring this particular painting to life. You can almost hear the water in the distance. p.s. This mural will be gone soon.
Living Space - Arany János / Sas street corner
Budapest's newest building is not an architectural feat, but an artistic one, erected by the Hungarian artists Fat Heat and Bea Pántya – in 'Living Space', the adorable inhabitants of a magical house look down on the street, precariously observing the crowd below. If you download the Lara app, you can watch the tiny inhabitants weather a rainstorm.
The City as a Restless Organism - Rákóczi bridge, Buda side
On one of the resting pillars of the Rákóczi Bridge, Budapest has been reborn as a large, floating structure of protruding members and floating islands. Almost tentacle-like, the new city twists and turns in this static painting, showing us an abstract, non-Euclidian version of Hungary's beautiful capital. It was created by Márton Borbás, a graphic design student at the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design.
Greetings from Budapest - Rákóczi bridge, Buda side
Hungarian artist Lehel Nyeste's cartoonish depiction of Buda and Pest depicts the marriage of the two parts of the city. Dragged along behind him, a lone but blissful rower cruises down the Danube. Each side of the city shows the most well-known elements of each side, such as Parliament and the citadel, connected by two different bridges that serve as the rower's ropes along which he pulls the city.
I Love BP - Elisabeth bridge, Buda side
Zsuzsi Bakos' colorful contribution shows two sides of Budapest in two separate murals. On one side, the river and the nightlife of Budapest intertwine, on the other side, an underwater creature voices his appreciation for the city by the Danube, which makes sense – in a very strange, twisted sort of way. Once again, water is a major topic for the artists, showing how important the dividing / uniting river of the Danube is for Buda and Pest.
On Earth, In the Water, In the Air - Elisabeth bridge, Buda side
On the pillars of Erzsébet Bridge, Hungarian artist Balázs Pusztai shows us the everlasting trichotomy of life: Two earthen hands, apparently made from stone, are holding the sea – a fish – and the air – a bird. Each hand is painted onto one of the two bridge pillars, which some may see as a necessity of canvas space, while other could interpret as another metaphor. Either way, they are beautiful to watch.
Do you want to see more street art? Our Jewish quarter tour is the one you need to check out then. Feel free to drop us a message to personalize it!
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