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Street Art Goes Viral

Words:

Edd Norval
March 25, 2020

When there's a social, economic, cultural or political event, often some of the most insightful and accessible perspectives come from grassroots voices. In art, graffiti and street art are quick to react to global situations. Negative or positive, their impact and fallout are opportunities for artists to say something. Coronavirus has been no different. When many have decided to stay at home, others decided to take to the streets.

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From rooftops in Greece to streets in Senegal, coronavirus is everywhere and so are artists looking to make a statement about it. A plethora of approaches ranging from satire to dire warning, have made it onto streets the world over.


Some will undoubtedly be seen to capture the zeitgeist, whilst others seem no less opportunistic than the mass emails and posts from brands who are 'here for you' at this time.


In Senegal, artists took to a strip of wall by a busy road - for both pedestrian and automobiles - making a plea for people to adopt the correct hygene precautions as a means of quelling COVID-19's spead. Their plea is one of the most genuine efforts.

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Somewhat hypocritically, many artists are urging people to stay indoors. Still, the art available on the streets offer many people a respite from the bombardment of news reports stoking fear and hysteria as much as urging common-sense.


Several countries operate on a gradient of suggestions as to how to react - from full-scale lockdown in Italy, to a more lassaiz-faire approach in Ireland. Still, people are allowed out and, with the closure of museums and most other public amenities, having art dotted around the streets is a temporary break from shutters and the increasingly rare sound of people and public transport. For many, it's comforting.


As expected, the results of street art's answers have been wide and varied. Here are some of the best, not only on artistic merit, but their impact too.

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