It’s genuinely the fault of Malaga’s prodigal son, Picasso. A fault no, let’s say a legendary error of Malaga’s love affair with art. Picasso and Malaga are the famous landmarks of an artist and his birthplace.
Malaga is now proving to have one of the coolest street art scenes in Spain, but that’s no surprise with the talent it breeds.
Picasso co-founded the Cubist movement and was regarded as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. Known to have invented constructive sculpture and the co-inventor of collage, he did in fact introduce his own signature incorporating the huge variety of styles to the art scene. Just 50 meters from Picasso’s birthplace and Plaza de la Merced, in the historic center of Málaga, is the Lagunillas neighbourhood. Its name comes from some small lagoons formerly in the area in centuries gone by.
The biggest gallery on show is the city itself but there are various art galleries displaying exhibitions of art across the centuries.
MAUS or Malaga Urban Street Art
MAUS or Malaga Urban Street Art is to be found thriving in the district of Soho. The Barrio de la Artes evolved thanks to an initiative to revitalize the neighborhood, having become unloved and starting to decay. The beautiful architecture however stayed strong and the bourgeois feel of the area returned with avengeance, displaying the best street art Malaga has to offer. The added ability to discover more information whilst wandering the maze of the city streets, is to be found in QR code plaques dotted like mini statues here and there, full of information on individual street art in areas such as The Center for Contemporary Art (CAC) at the Paseo del Parque.
The urban art here is different to that found in Soho. Key artists like Miguel Ángel Chamorro associated with ‘Fantasia en Lagunillas’ have been followed by Concha Rodriguez and Dita Segura who were given to green light of support from other local and national artists to begin to adorn the decaying walls in Lagunillas.
There are a number of tours available that will take you through the best districts and explain the history and different styles you will see but Soho is the place to see where street art is happening.
With the emphasis on street art, this project has been designed to convert the cultural heartbeat of this district. Make no mistake it is anything but average. Some of the world’s leading street art creators have been here before you arrive and left their signature.
Hidden places to discover
Look out for the increasing number of murals covering walls, doorways, bridges and windows in the Soho district with many more being created. You’ll need to head to El Perchel Bridge to see some of the best street art in Malaga. The east side of the river Javier Calleja left you an oil slick to ponder over. A brief about turn to the south with the sea on the horizon and you’ll gain a view of the gigantic murals by Obey and D*Face again painted in 2013 taking 3 days to complete measuring a whopping 38m in height by 9 meters in width.
After 7 hours and even with the help of a template, Mujer Fatal by Obey is a portrait of his wife and a symbol of everlasting peace, which you’ll find on the main street in the Soho district. Calle Casas del Campo and Calle Simonet are around the corner where you’ll see the repetition of doors and windows adorned with murals decorating the abandonment of this architecture.
Inspirational art pops up in the city time and time again, bringing new colourful additions such as the Venus mural, painted by Okuda and Remed, enhancing the façade of the Hotel Bahia. Best to stand and wonder from a distance, to see the artistry of the combing cocktail of colours.
Find your way to Calle Cordoba and arrive at Calle Vendeja there are some famous faces you’ll recognize. Antonio Banderas (aka Zorro and many more!), Picasso (the Master), Chiquito de la Calzada (actor & comedian) plus Dani Rovira (actor).
To be incorporated into street art, these famous icons would undoubtedly agree Malaga art is indeed magical!