Lisbon’s Street Art Scene

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Lisbon’s Street Art Culture

Street art is a democratic type of art- Art for everyone by anyone. It used to be anonymous, but now you can see the artist’s Instagram handle at the bottom of most paintings. Many street artists sell their works in fairs, galleries and some, like Bansky, have successful careers. Street artists are not anonymous art bandits anymore. They are an essential part of the cultural life of a city.


Street art follows and unfolds with the political, social, and economic situation of a location. It helps us understand the deep feelings of the people and the purely artistic expression of individuals. Street art may be in the form of graffiti or paintings on public walls. It used to be that artists had to sneak out in the middle of the night to paint a wall, and some still do that.

The local government (mayor’s office or cultural affairs dept) hires many artists to paint the empty walls with beautiful art to cover up the derelict buildings and avoid unwanted graffiti. It’s a way to control the city’s visual aspect. Not all art work is commissioned by the city.

Street art is constantly evolving, and contemporary street art includes graffiti, stickers on posts and walls, painting, sculptural painting, photography and, wall carvings. I can hardly wait to see what else they will be doing.

Lisbon’s Street Art

Bordaloii’s street art in Lisbon

The street artist Bordaloii (Artur Bordalo) creates three-dimensional wall paintings made with found objects. The animals in extinction and animals suffering from human pollution and way of life inspire his work. It’s hard to look at his work and not be aware of his message

vh lisbon street artVhils, Lisbon



Vhils (Alexandre Manual Dias Farto) carved faces reminded me of wood carvings, cave art, and the art of printmaking.

VhVhils at the Quinta da Comporta

It’s interesting to compare his work with Bordalo’s work. Bordalo adds layers of things on the wall, and Vhils removes layers until an image emerges. Beautiful work!

Lisbon’s Car Park

Lisbon street artStreet Art in Lisbon’s Car Park

Only in Lisbon!

When my guide Alice took me into to the car park, I thought it was a shortcut to another part of the neighborhood- It was such a surprise to see artwork on all the walls in a car park.

street art car park


People enter the car park, overwhelmed by traffic and desperate to find a parking space, and immediately slow down and relax when they see color throughout the walls.

car park art streetCozy Car Park!

That hectic world of driving, parking and schedules melts away, and your search for a parking spot becomes all about colors, objects, and design. A lot, more fun than those boring car parks! Each floor has paintings by a different street artists. Looking at art is a much nicer way to search for a parking spot.

Camilla Watson


Camilla Watson’s Street ArtCamilla Watson’s Street Art

It was such a pleasure to see Camilla Watson’s photographs hanging on the walls around the Mouraria streets. Watson took most of the portraits, but she also recuperated old archival images of people in the neighborhood, gave them her special treatment, and hung them along with her photographs.

Camilla Watson galleryCamilla Watson’s Wall Gallery

I was delighted to meet some of the people that posed for Camilla Watson’s wall photo exhibit. One man standing at his window called me to ask me if I saw his portrait, and when I told him that I did, he gave me a huge smile. The Mouraria still has an old neighborhood feeling and is a great place to walk around.


Guided walking tour by Alice from Alternative Lisbon and on Airbnb experiences.

Bordaloii Portuguese street artist

Vhils Portuguese street artist- London and Lisbon

Camilla Watson street art/photography in Lisbon


Marguerite Beaty, Blogger, Photographer & Artist

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