Urban spaces are often more concrete than creative, but today forward-thinking cities are showing their support for the arts through urban mural festivals. These vibrant events make art accessible, free of charge to their communities, create Instagram-worthy backdrops to attract visitors, and provide a platform for both local and international talent.
Check out the best of the movement that is bringing art to the streets and to your Insta feed:
-- Art Basel Miami (Wynwood area Miami, FL) The great December art show focuses on art and artifacts throughout the city, including freshly painted street art concentrated in the Wynwood area in northwest Miami. Wynwood has perhaps the largest concentration of street art in the country. Commissioned works at Wynwood Walls are especially notable.
-- POW! WOW! Long Beach (Long Beach, CA) This Long Beach festival takes its name from a Native American term that describes a gathering that celebrates culture, music and art. Come during Pow! Wow! Long Beach annually in July – featuring all-ages Art Battle open to the public, or explore the event’s murals in Downtown Long Beach year round to experience the work of renowned international and local artists.
-- CANVAS Outdoor Museum Show (West Palm Beach, FL): CANVAS Outdoor Museum Show brings together the most innovative contemporary artists from around the world each November. Championing art in public places, CANVAS transforms landscapes into an interactive art experience, activating spaces and engaging with the city from concept to completion. Colossal murals and installations punctuate the landscape, along with a complement of public and private events as a nexus between the artists and the community.
-- Wide Open Walls (Sacramento, CA) This August, Sacramento is preparing to brighten up neighborhoods across the city with plans for 30 large-scale murals. The Wide Open Walls vibe is festive and visitors can expect to see street performers along with plenty of food trucks. Don’t miss the Second Saturday block party!
-- SHINE (St. Petersburg, FL) After last year’s successful September debut, SHINE is back for a second time around. The festival emphasizes revitalizing spaces and inspiring dialogue that unites the St. Petersburg community through art. The art project is made up of local artists and community members, reflecting St. Petersburg's creative and vibrant spirit.
-- HUE Mural Festival (Houston, TX) Houston’s global reputation is growing, and the international art community is taking notice. The HUE Mural Festival has attracted over 100 artists from far-and-wide places including Puerto Rico, Iran, Argentina, Brazil and Spain, and returns this October for a uniquely urban arts celebration.
-- RVA Street Art Festival (Richmond, VA) The RVA Street Art Festival aims to support arts education for youth through community events. In addition to showcasing local and national muralists, the festival brings innovative mediums like drone and projection art. Returning in September, this year’s event will take on its biggest canvas to date – at The Diamond, Richmond's iconic baseball stadium
-- Life is Beautiful Festival (Las Vegas, NV)Street artists and muralists painted downtown Las Vegas walls a few years ago at the first "Life Is Beautiful Festival." It's now an annual event, and the artsy walls add more color to this hyper-colorful town.