Monday, January 10, 2011

A Sampling of Portuguese Street Art

Our two week adventure of living out of a suitcase had come to an end when we walked off the plane in Cairo. Our escort was waiting for us at Terminal 1. A trip isn't officially completed, in the books, finished until you are behind the walls of our school. The space between Cairo and Alex leaves much room for an extracurricular adventure or mishap as to say I never worry about our plane crashing, blowing up, being hijacked, etc however the drive back is usually the icing after a full day of traveling. In typical fashion our driver did not disappoint.

The conversation in the car started with this being the driver's second trip to Cairo that day! Let's say the average round trip between Alex and the airport typically lasts 7-9 hours, so for you math people out there that adds up to a min. of 14 hours driving. On the way out of town he asked if he could stop off on the side of the road at one of the makeshift tea stands to fill this thermos. "I want for you to be awake" (lit. I want to be awake while I drive you back) and casually mentioned he'd been up since 5am with no was already close to midnight. We here happy that he was proactive with the tea. As tired as I was, there was no way I was sleeping...we had one incident last year where our driver dozed off.

The race towards Alex included the following:
a. Driving up to 160 Kph with at times with lights off to avoid camera detection.
b. Pulling off to the side to inspect and remove a suitcase from the road. 
c. 3 hours of Oum Khamsum, Whitney Houston, and Egyptian pop hits.
d. Stories about driving to Libya at speeds of 240 Kph.
e. Racing with his motorcycle friends trying to get them to "ride like horse" meaning riding only on the back wheel.
f. Our driver leaning back on his seat pretending to do a wheelie.
g. Extreme tailgating NASCAR style.  

Several gray hairs later, we made it home alive and the following posts will be dedicated to our time spent in Portugal and Paris. The first of the batch will focus on street art, graffiti, tagging, murals, or however you wish to call it in Portugal. It is evident this genre has been finished for quite some time when even places like Beirut has their own street art book. I've heard the art in Lisbon was great, you decide. I'm not advocating modifying public and private spaces; I only snap the shutter.     

Got it, you've been here (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Da Bears (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)
There is a space where the funicular runs between Bairro Alto and City Center has some of better murals in Lisbon. The sign states that it is an Urban Art Gallery complete with lights.

We made the mistake on our first day of taking the funicular/trolley car down. We thought it would hit all the hot spots thinking it was the beginning of the infamous Tram Line 28. Fine minutes later at the end of the line we realized that we've just been had.

At some point in time this sign was B&W. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

There were points along the way where we were at a 45-degree angle. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

NATO didn't seem very popular in Portugal. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Add your own caption (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

More of the same. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Small head. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

XTrue til deathX--GO! (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

I thought it looked better with the garbage can. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Your new Tattoo. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

A dog, martini, a snail, what's not to like. (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

part 2 (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Many signs in Lisbon were bilingual. (Neighborhood: Alfama)

Hands down, Best of Show. (Neighborhood: Alfama)

(Neighborhood: Alfama)

Passing Through (Neighborhood: Baixa)

Don't drink the water. (Neighborhood:Baixa)

"Here's looking at you kid." (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

(Neighborhood:Bairro Alto)

The tile work around Bairro Alto was fab.

"Don't leave!" (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Eazy! (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

(Neighborhood: Bairro Alto) want me" (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Tile modification 101 (Neighborhood: Bairro Alto)

Sintra had nice tiles alongside buildings.

NATO is unpopular in Porto as well.

A fairly creative piece in Aveiro using texture on the walls.
In an upcoming posting about Sintra you'll see this beautiful palace. Even this UNESCO World Heritage Site/one of the Seven Wonders of Portugal isn't immune from people with NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder).

Did Banksy visit Cascais?

Mural in Bairro Alto

Part 2 of mural.

Sadly the second part of this painting didn't come out. Portuguese wine is good, but sometimes it makes you forget or stooped over on a chair (not pictured).

Sometimes you just need the whole building. (Lisbon)

or two! (Lisbon)


  1. Great posts & great photos. Hope you enjoyed your stay in Portugal.

  2. My Sister in Your FamilyJanuary 10, 2011 at 8:04 PM

    I'm lovin' it™