Bangkok, the New Craze for Murals

Proudly contributed by Luc Citrinot

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Every year, Bangkok vibes at the pace of Bukruk, the city international urban arts festival- a major event supported by the city and the European Union. 2016 was a successful event with a spectacular contest of a dozen world known street art painters turning some of  Bangkok blind walls into pieces of arts. Wall paintings have been increasingly popular around the world starting in the 1960s in hippie districts before turning into a recognized art movement in the eighties – particularly in West Berlin at that time. Since then, wall murals spread all across the world and is now taking Bangkok by storm. A few early examples of Wall paintings were realized a couple of years ago around Ratchadamnoen and Khao San Road in Dusit and Phra Nakhon districts in Bangkok historical town.

But the second edition of Bukruk, which was hosted earlier this year in Bangkok, gave a new dimension to wall paintings in the Thai capital as the giant murals were produced by some of the world’s most famous street artists from Europe and Asia in the streets of Bangrak district – which includes Chinatown and the banks of the Chao Praya River along Charoen Krung.

Mural from ROA Belgian artist, Song Wat Road

The painted walls – a large majority being concentrated along and around Charoen Krung road have an distinctive poetic feeling.  There is a tiger profiled over a floral pink background by Romanian artist Aitch; Belgian artist ROA created elephants sitting on each other, in a position reminding of a circus poster. The elephants face bicycles from Catalan artist Aryz. Or a gold mermaid surfing over the waves of a the black sea by the Greek artist Fikos. Best is to go by bicycle around the area and discover along the small alleys and streets the colourful murals which give to some grey walls a splash of life…

Street mural art is certainly Bangkok newest trends. Artists have for example been hired to design giant murals inside of some of Bangkok hippest hotels. The Beat Hotel Bangkok in Sukhumvit and the Cacha Hotel Siam asked local Thai artists to decorate each room with their art unveiling stunning perspectives of the rooms.

The Murals in Charoen Krung road and the entire area reinforce the emergence of that street into Bangkok newest art indie district. With its numerous art galleries, art and retro cafes, arty shops, the area is the new hip district of a more contemporary “zeitgeist” Bangkok.

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