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Muros en Blanco

By Karla Ortiz

Keeping with tradition, the ninth year of the Muros en Blanco Festival (February 4–10) brought national and international graffiti artists to town. This year, the invited guests consisted of artists from far and wide, but also close to home: among the guests were Wise Two from Kenya, Lesuperdemon from México City, Viri and Meme from Argentina, and Anali Zapatitos from San Miguel de Allende,

The length of the festival was increased this year so that the invited artists would have time to paint murals in the Guadalupe neighborhood. The following artists left their mark this year: Canción India, Tata Nacho, and Estrellita.

Wise Two told us that part of his inspiration comes from ancient cultures of Africa. Lesuperdemon said his work was based on an androgynous character having a psychedelic experience, which he said explained his palette of blue and green colors.

The festival also held a meet-and-greet with the artists to raise funds to subsidize the festival. At this event, there was also a first in San Miguel—a virtual reality piece of graffiti art, done in conjunction with the Guanajuato International Film Festival (GIFF).

From the beginning, Muros en Blanco has tried to show that graffiti is a form of artistic expression. In its first year, organizers centered the festival in the Guadalupe neighborhood, because it was the San Miguel neighborhood most affected by graffiti vandalism. Today, nine years after its inception, Muros en Blanco has made Guadalupe into a desirable artist’s district, visited by hundreds of people each year. Organizers hope that in time they will be able to do the same for other neighborhoods, similar to what has been done with other small festivals in neighborhoods such as San Luis Rey, San Antonio, and Independencia.

 

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