Welcome to Paris, “the city of lights” . This is the city where i was born. We all know Louvre museum, Mona Lisa, the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de triomphe, the Champs Elysées …
Where is Street Art in all this? Does Paris become like London, Berlin, New York, Barcelona or Bristol and its upfest festival … , a city where grey walls have turned into canvas for international street artists. Is there street artists based in the French capital city?
Well, yeah ! Paris has an abundance of street art, not only in the streets as some bars and restaurants have adopted it in their decor, whilst several galleries of Paris have made it their specialty.
In the passages of the metro, on the walls of the buildings or on the sidewalks, urban art is everywhere !
Where should you go in the maze of paris streets? Come with me, I’m going to help ! I’m going to give you adresses and tips that will let you discover “Paname” art scene and feel like a Parisian .
I take advantage of the release in Bookstore of “Guide du street art à Paris – Paris Street Art Guide ” by my good friend Stéphanie Lombard to guide you and discover the urban art of Paris.
Here i will advise the most interesting art galleries, organised walks and tours discovering neighbouring street art, books to read, artists to discover and useful maps …
Here is my ultimate guide. Enjoy!
Important Paris art spots :
1. Street art «promenade» along Canal de l’Ourcq
When the weather is fine, let yourself be guided on the banks of Canal de l’Ourcq for a street art stroll.
Here’s a map of the route that runs along the Canal and the bike path, the opportunity for a beautiful walk, bike trip or boat ride.
The walk along the banks of the canal was inaugurated in 2014. Artists permanently enrich this open-sky gallery. Vastly varying in size and scope, the artistic works are constantly beeing renewed. These are scattered along a course of more than 10 km of shore: from the Rotonde of Stalingrad in Paris 19th district to Aulnay-sous-Bois. You can discover works by: Levalet, Jace, DaCruz, Djalouz, Seth, Cyklop, Artof Popof …
Subway stations to get there: Jaurés, Laumiére, Riquet, Ourq
Close to subway station Jaurés, you can also have a look to “Le Point Éphémère”. At the 200 quai de Valmy, in the Paris 10th district.
In the landscape of Parisian street art scene, the Ephemeral Point is a place apart, promoting all the arts in all their forms, you can visit their website here: Point Ephemere
2. Belleville – Ménilmontant – Oberkampf
The historic heart of street art in Paris ‘le cœur historique du street art à Paris’ .
Street art stroll in Ménilmontant
Pretty photographic stroll to the heights of Ménilmontant. These streets are unmissable for street art lovers: rue de Ménilmontant, rue Noguére, rue de l’Hermitage, Quai de Valmy, rue des Petits Carreaux …
Subway station to get there: Ménilmontant
This is the spot of Paris to explore graffiti.
Read this article by Wonderbrunette: Paris Street Art focus sur la rue Denoyez
Subway station : Belleville
The Oberkampf distict :
Is a Parisian district that has become a privileged place of expression for all the urban artistic forms for more than 20 years now .
You will discover the works of Némo, Jérôme Mesnager and Ben.
Not to be missed ! The MUR Oberkampf. This is the core of Parisian urban art.
Every 2 weeks an artist creates an event like atmosphere by completly replacing the previous artist’s mural. The worlds most finest street artists have passed through this emblematic place of Parisian art.
Getting there is very easy. Get off at metro St Maur and walk up Rue Saint Maur.
3. Street Art in Paris 13th district
Street art at the Butte-aux-Cailles
This area combines Parisian romantism and urban art within the curves of the pretty lanes of the 13th district.
You will find works of Jana and JS, Nemo, Jef Aerosol, Miss Tic, … This area is also a very nice place for a drink or dinner.
Metro to get there: Place d’Italie
Monumental Murals of Paris 13th district
You can discover a lot of murals by international street artists (Shepard Fairey, C215, Pantonio, Tristan Eaton, Seth, ROA, Alapinta, Btoy, Ethos, ElSeed, INTI, M-City, RERO, Vhils, Sainer, David of the Mano, Dabro, Invader, Faile, Jana and JS, Dabro …)
in the streets of this borough within the south of the capital, street art is now part of the landscape. Since 2004, titanic murals have bloomed on the facades of buildings. An approach supported by Jerome Coumet a Parisian mayor who has a passion for urban art.
13th “arrondissement” of Paris is THE place to visit !
A phenomenon linked also to the arrival of four important urban art galleries, including Galerie Itinerrance, Galerie Mathgoth …
An interactive map : Paris 13 Murals
Metro stations: Nationale, Place d’Italie or Tolbiac
Les murs des Frigos “the fridges walls”
Where can you view this? The exact address is 19 rue des Frigos, in 13th district.
This is an interesting place for artistic production, exhibitions, meetings and shows. It opens its doors to the public every year in Spring.
The City of Paris acquired the Frigos at Réseau Ferré de France. This gives artists the opportunity to benefit from spacious and soundproofed rooms, which have been rendered luminous. The exterior façade of the building is covered with drawings, paintings and graffitis.
Visit the website here: Les Frigos
4. Marais – Beaubourg
Immediately next to the Georges POMPIDOU Museum of Modern Art there is another hotspot of urban Parisian art.
The huge mural by Jef Aerosol, Stravinsky Square, is a must see for street art enthusiasts.
Many techniques are presented in this district, including the aerosol bomb, the sticker, the collage and chalk, . This beautifully illustrates the creativity of the many French and international street artists who have laid their glue and aerosol cans here. You’ll discover artworks by Space Invader, Monsieur Chat, Jeff Aérosol, Gregos, J3 …
Metro stations: Chatelet, Hotel de Ville, Rambuteau
5. Vitry sur Seine :
Vitry sur Seine the unmissable “l’imanquable” !
This area is known by Parisians as the “French Open Sky Museum” . Today, tourists from all over the world make the trip to Vitry-sur-Seine, in Val-de-Marne and become fascinated by what is displayed in the streets. These artworks take form within murals using both stencils and freehand … After Christian Guémy, aka C215, has set up his studio in Vitry, many other street artists have been drawn to Vitry. For more information on Vitry read my articles: Vitry An open Sky Museum and C215 soul and heart of vitry sur seine
To go to vitry sur seine, it is very simple. take the RER C in Paris and stop at Vitry sur Seine station.
Here’s a map of RER C line
6. Essential Informations and tips:
An essential companion for your trip: I recommend the book “guide street art Paris”
Paris Street Art Guide by Stephanie Lombard ed Alternatives.
Stephanie is a famous street art blogger in Paris: Wonderbrunette
The book consists of: maps, 8 routes to discover districts of Paris and one route completely dedicated to Vitry. You will also have the opportunity to discover art festivals, focus on street artists individualy and discover the unmissable places. On each route, Stephanie suggests exellent bars, galleries, restaurants … This book is a must for urban art fans!
Street art galleries in Paris
Take a look at the list published by artistik rezo: Galleries in Paris
Discover Urban art in Paris with a group or personal guide : « Paris Street Art Tour »
I truly reccommend this team. They know very well Paris and the world of street art Paris Street Art Tour website
I’ve selected for you several books about paris street art.
La Tour 13: One of the most fantastic street art event in the world. Fantastic pictures of fantastic artworks in Paris 13. You won’t see those masterpices with your own eyes. The tower has been detroyed.
C215: one of the most famous French street artist. You’ll see hundreds of his artworks if you visit Vitry sur Seine. There’s also a cat stencil included in the book.
Vinie Graffiti: A book writen by my friend Jerome Deiss and about my friend Vinie Graffiti . A so poetic French Street Artist.
Street Art in Paris photos: