Public Art Spaces
Collected by Kristin Zibell, AFAR Local Expert
Places and spaces around the world where the only cost of admission is the space you take to observe these works of art. Some permanent, some temporary, all amazing.
San Nicolás, Buenos Aires, Argentina
A new generation of street artists, many with backgrounds in graphic design, emerged in Buenos Aires after Argentina’s economic crash in 2001. They have covered buildings in the city with stenciled slogans and vivid, cartoon-like characters—some...
Na Kampě 508/15, 118 00 Praha-Malá Strana, Czechia
On most days in Prague, it feels like every tourist in town has gathered on the Charles Bridge. And for good reason — this 14th-century cobblestone span crosses the Vltava River, connecting the Old Town with the Lesser Town (Mala...
4730 Crystal Springs Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90027, USA
In the hills above Los Angeles, near the Hollywood sign, Kepler, Galileo, and Copernicus look out over the city of 'stars.' Dominating the lawn in front of Griffith Observatory, this Astronomers Monument dates from the 1930s; the Depression-era...
Pont des Arts, 75006 Paris, France
Strolling over the Pont des Arts, in spite of the tourists, and the cliché, bereted accordian player busquing for a Euro... even with the lovers buying locks to place on the fencing, and the nasal wail of the Bateaux Mouches loudspeakers floating...
Presidio, San Francisco, CA, USA
From Native American home to Mexican frontier to U.S. military post, San Francisco’s Presidio has seen many changes throughout the centuries. For the past 30 years, the land at the northwestern end of the city has been a part of the Golden Gate...
1981 McGill College, 1981 Avenue McGill College, Montréal, QC H3A, Canada
In the middle of Montréal, walking up Avenue McGill College toward the Mountain, you can't help but run into the 65-person polyurethane sculpture "La Foule Illuminée" ("The Illuminated Crowd"). Sculpted by Franco-British artist Raymond Mason, this...
East Austin, Austin, TX, USA
The East Austin Studio Tour is held every November when over 100 local artists open their studios and workshops to the public. It's a great way to discover the hidden art scene in the East Austin community. From the streets, most of east Austin...
2901 Western Ave, Seattle, WA 98121, USA
Here's a bold claim: the Olympic Sculpture Park might just have something for everyone. Located on the waterfront, not far from Pike Place Market, it features great views of Puget Sound (well, on clear days) and the ferries going back and forth....
Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, USA
The East Austin Studio Tour is held yearly, two weekends in November when local artist's open their studios and workshops to the public. It's a great way to uncover the neighborhood's concentrated talent and unlikely art scene. I came upon this...
No. 1號, Dayong Road, Yancheng District, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan 803
Kaohsiung, Taiwan's second largest city, has been slowing shedding its reputation as a down-at-its-heel port thanks to urban renewal projects like The Pier 2 Art Center. These former warehouses have been converted into public art spaces. It's...
Rue des Francs 5, 1040 Bruxelles, Belgium
Thanks in part to Baron Victor Horta, Brussels was a leading center of the Art Nouveau movement starting in the 1890s and ending just before the Great War. This private house, open to the public once a month, wasn't a Horta creation but one by the...
2195 Nolensville Pike, Nashville, TN 37211, USA
Barcelona has Gaudi. Mexico City has Siqueiros. Nashville has Jairo Prado, a Colombian native who has called Music City USA home for almost 30 years and who created our city's newest public art masterpiece and landmark. "Migration," a 30-foot by...
R. Murtinho Nobre, 93 - Santa Teresa, Rio de Janeiro - RJ, 20241-050, Brazil
Rio is filled with quirky whimsical characters. And someone who epitomizes Rio’s eccentricity is an artist called Selaron. Selaron is a Chilean artist who has lived in Rio since 1983. A man with a crazy moustache, a maniacal laugh and a bizarre...
Piazza Navona, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Rome is famous for many things, especially its public art. Beautifully sculpted fountains, designed by Bernini and other great artists abound. The Trevi is probably the most famous, but in the Piazza Navona, there are three fabulous fountains: The...
300 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX 78205, USA
You haven’t truly experienced Texas until you’ve visited the hallowed grounds of the Alamo. Established in 1718 as the Mission San Antonio de Valero, the building is best known as the site of the 1836 Battle of the Alamo, a 13-day...
339 Massachusetts Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46204, USA
This life-size mural of author Kurt Vonnegut, painted on the side of a brownstone building on Massachusetts Avenue in downtown Indianapolis is my favorite example of the public art movement that has been gaining momentum. As part of the 2012 Super...
Ponce, Puerto Rico
The Pearl of the South got its nickname from the beautiful scenery and architecture in and around the city. Visitors can easily walk the streets of the historic center, taking in the red-and-black-striped Parque de Bombas, a former...
Medina, Asilah, Morocco
The beautiful, white-washed coastal town of Asilah is a just a quick 90 minute drive south of Tangier. One of the cleanest medinas in Morocco, its walls are adorned with an incredible collection of public artwork. With all of the trappings of...
Cihelna, 250 88 Čelákovice, Czechia
These two bronze statues in a little square outside the Kafka museum are saying it...with their urine. These clearly well versed lads quote famous Prague residents but for a period of time you could even SMS them you're own message. The statues,...
201 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60602, USA
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. ~ Marcel Proust. For my inaugural highlight on AFAR, I am starting with my wife's favorite quote, and a local sight in Chicago. Sometimes people feel they...
2 Jiuxianqiao Rd, Chaoyang Qu, Beijing Shi, China, 100096
How a complex of German-built factories became one of East Asia’s hottest art destinations is also the story of modern China. When construction on a number of electronics factories began in Dashanzi in 1956, the area was farmland. Joint...
Historic Third Ward, Milwaukee, WI 53202, USA
The Calling," by Mark di Suvero, is within sight of the Milwaukee Art Museum in a nice urban park. This photo was taken on a nice blue day, but the orange is quite welcome on winter grey days. It is the best known of Milwaukee's public art.
Rosenthaler Str. 39, 10178 Berlin, Germany
Ever been on a trip and found an attraction so weird and wonderful that words cannot give it justice? Well, in Berlin I found myself in this situation. While on a tour with "Alternative Berlin," I was transported to a hidden courtyard that has...
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