The city of Valencia is probably not at the top of most peoples wishlists when it comes to holiday destinations, but my long suffering family are quite used to my 'Great Ideas' when it comes to trips away, as they know I'm not a lazing-on-the-beach kind of person, and neither are they in truth. So when the combination of a cheap hotel deal and an affordable - for July - flight synced up on the various screens that are now required to coordinate a non-package holiday, they had a quick look at what we could do and see and decided that maybe my innate frugalness might work out ... this time.
One of my other adorable traits is the need to traipse and poke around every city I visit, as I have a fear of missing out on something wonderful that could be around the next litter strewn corner or down an alley that stinks of cat pee, or worse. And this yet-to-be-be-defined phobia led us at various times through the hot and sticky streets of Valencia, but what it uncovered was an unexpected bonus of fantastic wall art/murals/graffiti or whatever term suits your sensibilities.
Here amongst the now normal tagging and inane scribbles that seem to infect every city in Europe were some masterpieces of art that brightened up some of the plainer and perhaps less visited areas of the city. Indeed we saw very few other visitors admiring these wonderous walls of the city as our sandal-shod feet traced a path through the city, leaving a trail of perspiration and the occasional melted jelly baby in our wake.
So for this post I'll keep the words to a minimum and let the collages of these art works do the talking. It is certainly a side of Valencia that I suggest you explore if you have the time and the inclination. Most of these were in the north western quadrant of the city centre inside Carrer de la Blanqueria and Carrer de Guillem de Castro but there are probably works likes these throughout the city if you keep your eyes peeled. Many cluster around Espaivisor which was closed on our ramble but whose colourful shuttering can be seen in one of the collages.
Even the shop shutters of the city don't escape an aesthetic makeover ... and many a retailer could take note here!
... And where paint can't be applied then art can be hung to brighten up an otherwise bleak wall.
Finally, lets not forget the character, christened 'The Tic Tac Ninja' by my son, who seems to have taken up residence on every street in the city! See how many can you count...
I have no doubt that these works of art encourage the above mentioned tagging, some of which can be seen in some of the images but if we can't have one without the other then I'll take both. Of course some of these images are obviously created to elicit social commentary but many are just art for art's sake ... and that I like.
Part II is here.