Munich’s Positive-Propaganda

With my employer’s headquarters based in Munich, I regularly make trips to the Bavarian capital. Though I’m there for work, I always make time to take in some of the local sights. On a visit in September 2014, I was delighted to come across a giant wall by the Berlin-based artist, Kripoe. It was a perfectly serendipitous moment: bleary-eyed, jetlagged and rushing to work for an early morning continuing education session, this wall greeted me as I stepped off the tram outside the office.

kripoe [Read more: Kripoe for Positive-Propaganda]

With a little digging, I discovered this wall was a 2012 joint initiative between Amnesty International and the Munich-based non-profit arts association, Positive-Propaganda, who are “dedicated to establishing contemporary and socio-political art in urban spaces”. Amazingly, they had been able to convince the notoriously aloof artist to paint his first legal wall, titled “Hände hoch für Waffenkontrollel!” (“Hands Up For Gun Control”).

Around the corner, also on the grounds of the Schwere Reiter art center, I came across another Positive-Propaganda wall by the Spanish artist Aryz.

aryz [Read more: Aryz for Positive-Propaganda]

After an absence of two years, I returned to Munich in November 2016 for a 3-day software training. With only a Sunday afternoon of free time at my disposal, I hit the ground running, determined to see the walls Positive-Propaganda had helped produce since my last visit. With walls by Blu, Escif, Ericailcane, and Shepard Fairey, the organization had managed to attract some of the most socially conscious artists active on the streets to their cause. No mean feat in an era of increasingly vapid and purely decorative mural festivals…

blu [Read more: Blu for Positive-Propaganda]

escif [Read more: Escif for Positive-Propaganda]

ericailcane [Read more: Ericailcane for Positive-Propaganda]

obey paint it black [Read more: Shepard Fairey for Positive-Propaganda]

All photos copyright Luna Park. If you enjoy my photos, may I suggest you pick up a copy of my book? ;p

Grottaglie’s Fame

The sleepy town of Grottaglie, located in the high heel of the boot that is Italy, is admittedly not on most tourist itineraries. Yet thanks to the tireless efforts of Studiocromie’s Angelo Milano, whose Fame Festival this summer celebrated it’s 4th year, I have made two pilgrimages to the tiny town – known primarily for ceramics – deep in southern Italy. Fame has attracted some of the international street art and graffiti scene’s most talented artists and let them paint the town red. Big walls by Blu, Aryz, Sam3, Ericailcane – to name but a few – and whimsical characters by Os Gemeos scattered across the medieval town center have made Grottaglie a must-see destination for a street art aficionada like me. The images below are some of my favorite walls, all shot over two, gloriously warm, and sunny days this past November.

108 in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
108 in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Aryz in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Aryz in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Bastardilla in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Bastardilla in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Bastardilla in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Bastardilla in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Blu in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Blu in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Boris Hoppek in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Boris Hoppek in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Boris Hoppek in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Boris Hoppek in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Dem in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Dem in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Dem in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Dem in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Erica Il Cane in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Erica Il Cane in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Erica Il Cane in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Erica Il Cane in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Escif in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Escif in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Escif in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Escif in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Escif in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Escif in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Ethos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Ethos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
MoMo in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
MoMo in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
MoMo in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
MoMo in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Nespoon in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Nespoon in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Nunca in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Nunca in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Os Gemeos in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Sam3 in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Sam3 in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Sam3 in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Sam3 in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Vhils in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Vhils in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Vhils in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)
Vhils in Grottaglie (photo by Luna Park)

Stopover in Ancona

On our recent whirlwind drive to the Fame Festival down the entire length of Italy and back, we randomly stopped in Ancona for the night. Imagine my great surprise and delight to come across a massive WK Interact installation on the town seawall on the way back to the autostrada the next morning!

wk interact

wk interact

wk interact

the good life

wk interact


Apparently the wall was done as part of the second PopUP! festival earlier this summer. Turning back to the car after having admired the WK wall, I looked over the harbor towards the Adriatic, only to discover yet another large-scale art invention: two silos beautifully adorned with a nautical theme by Blu!

message in a bottle

Totally unexpected moments of discovery like this are what continues to fuel my enthusiasm for street art…

A Burst of Blu at Deitch

It’s been a busy month for Italian artist, Blu, who put in some stellar work at this year’s Fame Festival in Grottaglie, Italy. An artist who consistently impresses in both the scale and content of his pieces, Blu shifted gears to paint his first US mural on the exterior of Deitch Projects‘ Long Island City gallery. Yesterday I caught the artist putting some finishing touches on his latest masterpiece, working under a plastic tarp to escape the rain. This sunny mural – a commentary on the state of the US economy? or on the intersection between art and commerce? – is a welcome shot of color on the otherwise bleak East River waterfront.

blu in new york

blu in new york

blu in new york

Already Famous

For the second year in a row, the sleepy Italian town of Grottaglie recently welcomed some of the world’s most renowned street artists to the Fame Festival. Although I was only in town briefly, I already know I will make an effort to return next year. An enormous, abandoned monastery on the outskirts of town provided not only a perfect setting, but also an incredible atmosphere for viewing art – I can honestly say the experience bordered on the mystical. Here are a few impressions of David Ellis and Blu’s massive collaboration in one of the monastery’s courtyards, all that remains from the work they put in to create the animation below.

combo by david ellis + blu

combo by david ellis + blu

combo by david ellis + blu

combo by david ellis + blu