It’s not a secret that Tor Pignattara is one of my favourite areas in all of Rome, and the overabundance of street art that one can find wandering around here is just one of the things that I love about this multicultural neighbourhood the most.
Born out of a fierce need for expression of strong social disadvantage, every year street art is becoming more and more vanilla.
The spreading of urban art festivals has a lot to do with it: curators usually want something aesthetically nice, which will please everybody.
It’s gone from a tool to convey radical political messages. Now street art has become a ‘tool’ to decorate walls – probably the cheapest way for public administrations to show that some action has been taken to redevelop the outskirts, even if they’re only putting up a façade (no pun intended).
As the numbers of legal walls and self-proclaimed art curators slowly increase in the capital, Rome’s street art scene is beginning to attract internationally renowned street artists, curious street art lovers eager to discover a less classical side to Rome, and growing attention from the institutions.
Some of our local artists are now invited to paint abroad, so we can say that Rome’s proverbial parochialism is fading away year after year, although the majority of the works realized on the streets of Rome are still amateurish, especially when compared to those abroad.
It seems like only yesterday that I saw Addfuel painting his first mural in Rome, and consequently met the Forgotten team, and now, a few crazy adventures later, it’s already time to say goodbye. The last Portuguese street artist that we have invited to paint his first mural in Rome was Daniel Eime, and he arrived just one week before the group exhibition at MACRO Testaccio, so our schedule was a bit hectic –but you should know by now that that’s how we like it.
When I saw Bordalo II’s stunning racoon in Belem, my first thought was ‘where did he find all those pieces of trash?’
Little did I know that soon I was going to regret that wonder, while I was getting to know how difficult it can be to get some pieces of garbage to hang on a wall.
Because yes, this time, I was Bordalo II’s trash-buddy. And it was crazy. ☺
‘I was pretty tense about this mural’ he said ‘You know, portraying someone like Pasolini… and, moreover, in a location like this one’ he added, pointing to the ruins of the Mira Lanza factory in the beautiful, post-industrial yard of Teatro India.
‘Well, you nailed it!’ I replied in my over-enthusiastic voice.
‘I guess so… I mean, now I’m satisfied with the result, but you should’ve seen me when I was approaching the job: I was so nervous!’