Calella: Graffiti paradise

Sometime mid Aug I found my newly wedded bride & me walking blissfully in the sun through the quiet and not overly  tourist packed town of Calella in Espana. If you like the idea of being in a old town with less brits it’s 40 mins north of Barcelona if you follow the coastline and truly is a really nice place to visit. We had retreated there to finally celebrate all the hard work that went into making our wedding day perfect. With camera in tow I looked forward to catching some Mediterranean landscapes and textures of town life on the side during our honeymoon.

On our first full day after arrival we just chilled with a bit of window shopping through the towns many tourist shops and got familiar with our surroundings. One part of town has old traditional houses like Barcelona and the other had sky-rise hotel chains all blocky and bright as the 1970s they we’re built in.  The idea of spending more time in the old town was on both our minds but we noticed something was drastically wrong with our picture. Graffiti everywhere, like aerosol locusts had just shat on an old city, at first I felt the usual attitude of how sad youth have no respect until I took a further look and noticed all the tags were of really good penmanship?!

That afternoon Siesta we went back to the hotel for another all you can eat crammin session but before going up I went for a cigarette and walked behind the hotel where I thought I’d seen an old viaduct/ravine running underneath the streets with maybe a graffiti piece on its wall.  I had no idea at this point that I was going to stumble on a little bloody gem! The viaduct was a graffiti artists community gallery. It felt like that moment when Gene Wilder opened the door to the chocolate factory and everyone’s jaw dropped. Quickly from the tags I realised  that artists we’re coming all over Europe to put up work and by far this was the finest talent i’d eve seen with my own eyes and better yet it went on for a quarter mile and i’d only seen one side…….

The next day we went down into the sandy pit to document this little discovery all the while thinking that there was roughly a thousand works with possibly 300 main pieces. Further up the concrete ditch we find an artist and his misses pitchin parasol and aerosol  for a spot of afternoon creativity. After doing the clumsy “you speak english?”  the German sprayer tells me that people come from all over Europe to compete here and that in Spain Graffiti is not illegal!  Awesome was the only word for it, I could say no more and just continued to snap away as he worked his solid slab canvas.

A few days later we we’re in Barcelona where I did not find a single surface without graffiti (except war memorials). Graffiti, it’s deep in the Spanish culture for sure, in fact it truly does go hand in hand with their passion for expression. I could have taken shots forever and found this part of my holiday to be a proper treat. Maybe next year i’ll go back and put up a piece myself. I’ve not done anything like this is years and definitely not on this scale. We shall see.

A large scale piece of Micheal Jackson’s “Thriller” had the tag “Soem”  and guess what? They only made a video of it. Youtube/Soem Calella graffiti 2009 “Thriller Video”

I will post some pictures of Spain other attraction hopefully soon.

Peace to all. Obee (“,)


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