Street Art in Paris Canal de l’Ourcq is worth a visit!

Street Art in Paris Canal de l’Ourcq is worth a visit!

16 September 2020 0 By Séverine

As far back as I can remember; Street Art has always been present in this part of the 19th district of Paris. long before trendy cinemas, bars and restaurants made their appearance there. By focusing on the eastern part of the Canal de l’Ourcq, we can distinguish 5 must-see spots. as you will see, the  Festival Ourcq Living Colors created by dAcRuZ, Street Artist living in the neighborhood, has created a strong dynamic around Urban Art. And as dAcRuZ is painting there since more than 15 years; the district look like a giant exhibition of his works. I will come back to his work deeply in another article, because now, I really want to show you the diversity of what you can discover while walking along the Canal.

 

unmissable! The wall of free expression on Henri Noguères street

I have never seen this wall without a single graffiti, tag or mural! Every week graffiti artists come to put their blaze or create frescoes. It is truly an iconic Street Art spot nearby the canal. And above all, it is a place where artists can express themselves without having to fear a ticket or an arrest!

Street Art Canal de l'Ourcq - Oeuvre réalisée par l'artiste Berthet One

“Le Savoir est une arme d’instruction massive” par Berthet One – Photo @Altinnov

 

There are local artists; but also sometimes international artists who come to have fun on this wonderful playground. During my last visit we could see works by Choofy, BerthetOne with his message « Knowledge is a weapon of mass instruction”. And also a very beautiful blaze done by Astro, well known Street Artist who does not forget where he comes from.

 

The astonishing phenomenon of Henri Noguères Street is this fresco in tribute to Stan Lee, the immense creator of superheroes for Marvel Editions. It has remained intact over the year; which certainly demonstrates the attachment  of graffiti artists for those childhood’s characters or the respect they have for ARM Crew who produced this fresco ;-)… We find there Hulk, Iron man, Captain America and Spider-Man!

Hommage à Stan Lee - MARVEL - Comics _ Street art Canal de l'Ourcq

Hommage à Stan Lee par ARM Crew – Photo @Altinnov

 

Artworks that have become iconic along the Canal de l’Ourcq, quai de la Loire

Going up along the Canal de l’Ourcq, if you keep your eyes wide open, you will come across some nice Invaders

 

If you tend to look up, you can’t miss this sailor made by French artist Raphael Federici or the incredible barge covered with the work “Sarah, the jaguar charmer” done by Marko93!

Marin de Raphael Federici - Street Art Canal de l'ourcq

Raphael Federici – Photo @Altinnov

Street Art Canal de l'Ourcq - Sarah la charmeuse de jaguar par Marko 93 - peinture sur péniche

Sarah la charmeuse de jaguar par Marko 93 – Photo @Altinnov

 

It is as you get closer to the Crimée Street that a festival of works that have been there for years awaits you. They transform this walk along the Canal de l’Ourcq into an unique moment! As with COVID, i’m not ure you’re coming for a walk in Paris, I’ve decided to show you more works than in my previous articles!

I start with the work of Andréa Ravo-Mattoni which is a real bridge between classical painting and urban art. This Italian Street Artist never stop reproducing classic paintings; here we find a reference to the French painter Valentin de Boulogne who made a career in Roma at the beginning of the 17th century. Just magic!

Street Art Canal de L'Ourcq. Andréa Ravo-Mattoni s'inspire du peintre Française Valentin de Boulogne

Andréa Ravo-Mattoni – Photo @Altinnov

 

Still on the dock side, we find Simone Veil erected as Marianne produced by the French collagist Jo Di Bona. This fresco was produced in a very special context because the artist Christian Guémy had painted portraits of her around the Panthéon. these has been degraded with swastikas! Highly anti-semitic act. By styling Simone Veil with the Phrygian cap, Jo Di Bona sets her up as a symbol of Republic and thumbs his nose at the loosest and most abject anti-Semitism there is!

Portrait de Simone Veil érigée en Marianne avec bonnet phrygien par le Street Artiste Jo Di Bona

Simone Veil par Jo Di Bona – Photo @Altinnov

 

After this powerful work, we can rest the eye with a dose of sweetness created by French artist Vinie Graffiti. She distils her pin-ups all over the world by systematically doing surprising work on their hair. Here she produced a work as part of the Ourcq Living Colors Festival and paid tribute to it and to its founder dAcRuZ. look carefully a the the pin-up’s hair 😉

pin up réalisée par Vinie Graffiti dans le cadre du Festival Street Art Ourcq Living Colors

Vinie Graffiti – Photo @Altinnov

 

We can also admire the Mechanicals Animals of the French artists ARDIF. I’ve thought of Street Art for years as a formidable bestiary. Some artists focus on endangered species while Ardif asks us about the precarious balance between nature and industrial world. Its gears and architectural constructions are very complex and suggest that the animal is eaten from within by the modern world. It may sound a little scary, but I still find his work quite poetic…

Street Art Canal de l'Ourcq - Animaux mécaniques par l'artiste Français ARDIF

Animaux Mécaniques par ARDIF – Photo @altinnov

 

Right next ARDIF’s work, we find an ultra-graphic and very colorful face produced by the militan Street Artist Kashink. And also those birds that seem so light by Thai artist Mue Bon who systematically distills messages that appeal to the public. Here if you’re knowing French, we can read between the lines “REVOLUTION”!

Oeuvre des Street Artistes Kashink et Mue Bon quai de la Loire Paris

Œuvres de Kashink & Mue Bon – Photo @Altinnov

 

Arriving at Ourcq Street, at the level of the bridge, you quickly understand that you are entering the universe of Ourcq Living Colors Festival. The easy point of reference, not to get lost, is a work by dAcRuZ, and one on the other side of the bridge that I like a lot from Cart’1, although it is a bit degraded…

Ourcq’s Street: An artistic explosion of giant & small frescoes and also old style’s graffiti

It al starts with a giant work by  dAcRuz and then we discover a myriad of works, each more colorful than the next. The works follow one another and are not alike. You will be amazed! There are artists from completely different universes like UnkolorDistinto, FKDL Franck Duval, Shiro One, Kaldea, Sitou, Jessi Doudou and many others… A very Hip Hop rhythm for this wall that never ends;-) Frankly, it’s difficult for me to select only few works; so I gave you a little slideshow for this incredible wall before showing you a more secret place!

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The big hidden Street Art Wall of the restaurant Le Passage à niveau

One would tend to walk past this entrance without seeing it; it’s look like nothing more than an old tunnel under a railway track. in fact those old railway called “little belt” circled Paris and are beginning to be rehabilitated. The raisl are still there, but we also discover other treasures! By rushing into the number 2bis Ourcq Street, you think you will arrive… nowhere or just on a restaurant terrace after climbing the steps on the left. In fact, we discover a very nice restaurant that has a magnificent view on a wall full of works!

Mur STreet Art restaurant Le Passage Paris - Artiste Hecat Oner

Mur Street Art du restaurant Le Passage à niveau – Photo @Altinnov

 

The discovery of this wall gave me pleasure because we find there the comic delirium of Dawal, un magnificent face madeby Hecat Oner, nice graffiti by Don Pablo, the wild France of Choofy and many others artists if we take a look closer.

I didn’t linger at the restaurant which looked more than nice, but i will go back! In fact, I couldn’t wait to see what else I could discover in the district. So I continue on Ourcq’s Street to Jean Jaurès Avenue and turned left on Ardennes Street to find myself Germaine Tailleferre’s Street.

 

Germaine Tailleferre’s Street; the other spot of the Ourcq Living Colors Street Art Festival

This is the end of my Street Art walk close to the Canal de l’Orucq and what an end! One thing is certain; Street Art would not be as developed if there were no festival and without the intervention of the artist dAcRuZ! This last row of works is amazing, there is a host of artists, styles and colors, always more colors! I have concocted a small slideshow with all the works, ending with the discovery of the artist David ‘Techeko ‘ Latulipe who produced a very graphic fresco, all in movement, which almost makes us want to dance!

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To take this Street Art walk around the Ourcq Canal, nothing could ne simpler, you just need to take the subway to Jean-Jaurès station and go Quai de la Loire… Frankly, it’s worth the detour!

If you liked this walk, you should love Street Art in the Queens or in Vitry-sur-Seine which I thought about a lot while walking in the 19th of Paris.

I put my sneakers and head for the city of Boulogne-sur-Mer for my next article!

See you soon for new Street Art adventures!