Vitoria-Gasteiz is a city of a quarter million people nestled in the heart of Basque Country alongside famous neighboring cities, Bilbao and San Sebastian. Vitoria- Gasteiz is a humble city, often considered more of a pueblo amongst locals because of it’s small town feel charm and how everyone knows each other. Your bound to run into someone you know on an outing to the grocery store or walking through La Plaza Virgin Blanca, the central meeting spot to gather before going for pintxos or planning your night.
Vitoria is charming. Walk through the medieval quarter and you’ll be thrown back in time. I always get a kick out of watching kids kick a football through the streets as parents chat with their friends and sip glasses of wine.
But it’s not only the architecture and people who bring charm to this city. Throughout Vitoria, though mostly concentrated in the Casco Viejo, you’ll find beautiful murals painted by local artists who want to add vibrancy to their city.
Itinerario Muralístico de Vitoria-Gasteiz (IMVG) is a non-profit organization that began with the goal of bringing professional artists and locals together to beautify their city. The murals add a lot of charm and life to the Casco Viejo and it’s clear a lot of thought, time and effort have been put into each mural. Each piece of art. Street art for everyone to enjoy.
IMVG coordinates, plans and paints the murals and encourages local residents to get involved by volunteering in the summer. Every June and July workshops are held when new murals are created. Everyone is welcome, experienced or not. What a great way to get to know your community and meet people!
My face always lights up when I pass by these big murals.
Art you can touch. Art you can photograph. Art you can read. Art that is free. Art you can reflect on and try to understand the artist’s intentions as each has a theme or a message to take away.
Art for everyone.
Some of the street art in Vitoria-Gasteiz is not done by the IMVG. It’s nice to see Street art alive and well in this city!
Group tours are offered to learn more about the street art, goals and history behind the artwork. However, if you are unable to take a tour there is ample information on their website in three languages, Castellano, Euskara and English to learn more about the organization, how to get involved and about each mural.
Do you have a lot of murals or street art in your city? What do you think about creating organizations that encourage art in the streets?
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