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Brooklyn Street Art

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ESCIF “La Pared Es Nuestra”. Sant Feliu de Llobregat. Barcelona

Posted on June 18, 2018

When Street Artists and graffiti vandals are looking for a spot in public space they sometimes claim a wall as their own – even if someone else owns it. It’s a bit of hubris, but it helps with the street credibility among peers. In the case of this neighborhood in Barcelona, the whole neighborhood owns the wall – and Street Artist Escif knows it.

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

Winner of a competition among 300 international and national Street Artists last summer/fall on which BSA was part of the jury, the Spanish Street Artist has now completed his new mural in Sant Feliu de Llobregat entitled “La pared es nuestra” (The Wall is Ours). The wall borders the central square of outdoor civic life in a community of working people who coalesced and actively fought government neglect and resisted private capital brutality in the 1970s to create streets, services, and public space for themselves here.

To commemorate that victory and the struggle that led to it, this true community mural was conceived and realized last month in a grand opening ceremony and celebration that invited a few generations of its proud inhabitants.

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

Known for his study and critiques of social, political and environmental undercurrents that form the framework of modern society, Escif worked with local leaders and the projects’ sponsors Contorno Urbano and Kaligrafics to conceive of and produce the result. The wall features a non-linear representation of historical events and popular/civic engagement that were necessary to transform the neighborhood. Referencing photos from the elders from the earliest days of struggle, the warmly flat characters and graphic elements are open and frank, focused the the central elements of democratic processes and the chaotic forms that can ultimately yield the right to self determination .

The greater message can provide inspiration to groups of individuals who are knocked back on their heels and yet find common cause, reminding us all about the power of the people.

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

In a statement about his perspective for conception and execution of the piece, the artist says that a galvanizing event on this very square provided him with greatest inspiration and many in attendance at the opening celebration would agree that his vision is perfectly realized.

“In May 1977 [during Franco’s dictatorship], the residents of the Sant Feliu neighborhood called La Salud managed to halt the construction of a gas station. Neighbors say that it was during the night, while the city was still sleeping, when some brave women and men decided to push a concrete mixer into the construction hole where the foundations were going to be established.
They covered the hole with soil and then they planted a tree. Legend has it that if a tree is planted on an occupied plot of land, nobody will ever be able to remove it. That was exactly the genesis of that square, a square that still belongs to the neighbors, the residents of Sant Feliu.

“ ‘La Pared es Nuestra’ [The Wall is Ours] is a retaining wall that rescues the voices of those who are gone, that keeps the voice of those who remain, and that suggests the voice of those who are yet to come. An inclusive wall made by and for the neighbors, it is a wall that can be heard, that contains the sounds of the neighborhood, of its history, and of its inhabitants. This is a wall that can be read, and that has as many readings as visitors who come to contemplate it.”

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

 

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

Escif. “La Pared es Nuestra”. A project between Contorno Urbano Foundation, Kaligrafics and The Municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat. (photo © Clara Antón)

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