“Walls Of Change” is Cinemart’s latest production, effectively recapping a project started back in 2009 with the late Tony Goldman. The project which spawned multiple off shoots that set about revitalising an area through the power of street art. Tony’s vision, to create an international outdoor street art museum.
A mini docuseries, “Here Comes The Neighborhood” followed the Wynwood Walls, Wynwood Doors and Outside The Walls project over the next few years. The pieces follow a selection of the artists involved, are excellently paced, provide still photography from Martha Cooper and have a great soundtrack. Definitely worth checking. The idea of creating an outdoor gallery, as such, as a means of rejuvenating an area is something that’s happened on a comparatively small scale, here in Belfast.
We’ve talked about the Hit The North project in the city before that’s been exponentially growing since it’s inception, as part of Culture Night, now bringing internationally recognised artists into the fold. The concept, not too dissimilar, taking a raw, run down area (North Street) and adorning the walls with street art. The area has definitely grown in the past few years in terms of business. The correlation is probably unquantifiable but it's pleasant to see an upturn with street art at the heart of the surroundings. The project has expanded it’s geographical reach with each year, demonstrating a demand for quality street art across Belfast, extending as far as the Harbour commission and Titanic Quarter. Check out the Hit The North recap by Redcap Productions below.
Further to that, where is the point of over saturation? Who draws the line? Street artist may start to take liberty with projects. Is it becoming too commercialised? Should there be an element of curation? These are all valid questions and something applies whether you’re strolling down Tony Goldman Way, Miami or kicking it down North Street in Belfast. Of course, the project in Miami might work on a different level, with it’s rather industrial footprint, using the blank warehouses as canvas. This mightn’t be as successful elsewhere without due care for the surroundings. Artists and planners must be sympathetic to the mish mash of architectural styles here in Belfast, for example. There has to be balance. As Shepard Fairey points out,
Cheers for reading.