Street art has finally begun to blossom across the United States in a new wave of urban beautification that has been helping to turn around neighborhoods dismissed as undesirable, dangerous, or just plain ugly.
From Miami's Wynwood Walls to Denver's RINO (River North) district to Nashville's Gulch, street artists are finding a new role in America's cities.
What was previously considered to be graffiti or undesirable paint on walls has transformed into a cure for blighted areas that were thought lost or uninhabitable because of urban decay and crime. It seems an ironic twist of fate that street artists are the new protagonists in this new war on ugly walls, often bringing rapid gentrification and hip working professionals that appreciate what's happening and see it as a step in the right direction.
Emerging street artists Ian Ross and Jason Woodside are a good example of this change and have been tapped to create side-by-side mural's in Nashville's Gulch in conjunction with a local developer and Nashville Walls Project.
These artists will bring their unique brands of bombing science to help further enhance this growing street art hotbed. Then they will most likely rush off to some other city and do it all over again in their constant cycle of creating art on walls.
Cities like Nashville are not what you would think of as destinations for street artists, but with changing attitudes and exciting growth, this is a trend that's worth getting excited about.
Pioneers like Shepard Fairey have long fought the law and local authorities to take their art to the streets for the general public to enjoy. As the stigma of the street artist gradually evaporates it will be exciting to see more unlikely neighborhoods become peppered with colorful artwork and changing communities for the better.
The Bushwick Collective is the perfect example of how street art can make a huge difference in an urban landscape covered in blacks and grays. What was once a depressing stretch of Brooklyn now has over 50 works of art on walls bringing a new energy and excitement to the area.
Street art ranging from traditional wild style graffiti lettering to sophisticated murals to mixed media brings art tourists from all over the world to walk these hoods and appreciate these works.
Colorful murals that look like the belong in museums are being layered into the landscape and often only exist for a couple of months before another piece of art takes its place.
The world of street art is constantly changing, and some of these neighborhoods have become a revolving canvas for artists that will soon be selling in galleries for thousands of dollars.
So whether you are in Nashville's Gulch or Miami's Wynwood, keep your eyes out for the next global superstar because they might be right under your nose as you stroll by these urban delights.