In today’s world, street art has become a powerful tool for social activism. Using public spaces as a canvas, street art can convey powerful messages that can spark conversations and raise awareness about critical social, political, and environmental issues.
On our news page, you will find a carefully curated selection of stunning street art murals. These murals are created by some of the world’s most accomplished street artists, who use their unique styles and techniques to communicate their messages in a visually compelling way. Murals are powerful statements that address various injustices and promote hope for a better future. Whether it’s the fight against climate change or the struggle for social justice, these murals convey important messages that inspire people to take action.
We are thrilled to present our annual recap of 2023, which features the most impactful street art murals of the year. To create this recap, we carefully selected one mural from each month that had the most significant impact and featured it in our editorial. Click on any month to explore the full editorial and discover the story behind each mural. We hope that our annual recap inspires all those who believe in the power of art to effect positive change in the world.
Explore our recap to discover the best street art of 2023!
Millo‘s finished mural for Wynwood walls was inspired by the planet and humanity. The mural “Work in Progress” is a reflection of Millo’s own personal philosophy when it comes to art and the environment. He has said that he draws inspiration from the planet and humanity and feels a strong sense of urgency regarding our relationship with nature. In a world where climate change is a growing concern, and the effects of human activity on the environment are becoming increasingly apparent, Millo’s message is particularly poignant. There is a sense of hope and optimism in the mural, as well. It’s a reminder that even though we have a long way to go when protecting our planet, there is still time to make positive changes and create a better future for ourselves and future generations.
Image © Nika Kramer
A Banksy artwork addressing domestic violence was confirmed as the artist’s own via Instagram. The piece depicted a woman in a 1950s dress and rubber gloves closing a trunk freezer with a man’s legs and shoes sticking out. The artwork urged us to remember that love should not cause harm and that we should strive for relationships based on equality and respect.
Image © Banksy
Street artist Aida Wilde pays tribute on International Women’s Day to the thousands of women and girls who have been murdered in the struggle against Iran’s oppressive theocratic regime.
Image © Aida Wilde
Dados Punto Cero paints an owl titled ‘Wisdom’ to his ‘TetraBrick Series murals, creating much-needed awareness and conversation on the excessive use of landfills and waste production. The murals encourage us to recycle, reduce waste, stop one-use plastics, and motivate us to rethink packaging. The ‘Tetra Brick Series looks at the recycling process and how easy or difficult it is to recycle specific packaging due to its different components. Tetra Pak cartons are criticised for being more difficult to recycle than tin cans and glass bottles. The difficulty lies in that recycling Tetra packaging demands specific recycling plants that are costly and not easily accessible and that, if not recycled, can end up in landfills.
Image © Dados Punto Cero
Artists and activists in Southeast Asia are campaigning for legislative change to protect citizens’ right to clean air. The Splash and Burn artists executed five interventions in support of a Malaysia-centric campaign to implement new laws. The interventions included “Transboundary Haze” by Ernest Zacharevic and culminated in the #hazestories exhibition, which attracted over 6,000 people in 10 days and collected over 2,000 signatures on a petition to demand accountability from major polluters. Greenpeace filed a complaint with the Human Rights Commission in December 2021, and the issue is currently under review by experts who will issue new policy recommendations to the Malaysian government. The Splash and Burn campaign aims to inspire action and encourage conversation to hold polluters accountable.
Image © Antoine Loncle
Saype is a French-Swiss artist known for his visually stunning and environmentally conscious landart installations. His works are made with eco-friendly materials and often address water protection and solar power, encouraging sustainable living. One of his recent projects near Lake Geneva featured a discarded plastic bottle transformed into a powerful work of art. The artwork used natural pigments, charcoal, and chalk to create a giant empty plastic bottle crumpled up and thrown onto the grass, with the black cap on the other side of the pavement. Saype’s use of simple materials to convey a profound message is a testament to his creativity and social responsibility.
Image © Saype
Patty Mills, the Brooklyn Nets and creative agency Street Theory celebrated unveiling a new mural honouring local and global Indigenous communities in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. The mural ‘Indigenous Flow’ was painted by internationally renowned artist Victor “Marka 27” Quiñonez and took inspiration from Mills’ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander roots in Australia, as well as the RedHawk Native American Arts Council, Ramapo Munsee Lunaape Nation and other global Indigenous communities in the New York Area.
Image © Tost Films
Wildlife advocates and supporters came together in Lower Manhattan to celebrate unveiling a stunning new mural that raises awareness for endangered tigers and other big cats. The large-scale mural, titled “Beyond Borders: The Beauty and Peril of the Tiger,” was painted by renowned wildlife muralist Sonny Sundancer as part of FOUR PAWS’ #BreaktheViciousCycle campaign. The campaign calls for the end of the commercial trade of all big cats in South Africa, where they are farmed for international trade. The mural also draws attention to the fact that more tigers live in private ownership in the US than in the wild. The three-story mural is the first in FOUR PAWS’ #YearofArt series, featuring giant cat murals painted and displayed worldwide. The Manhattan mural also honours the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act.
Image © Just a Spectator
A new mural by AptART and Montreal-based street artist Kevin Ledo features a colourful portrait of a young climate activist named DeeDee. The mural aims to raise awareness about climate change. Ledo’s art is inspired by the beauty and diversity of the human experience and celebrates unique cultural and ethnic identities. He worked with the Ladies of Girls Inc. in Lynn, Massachusetts, a non-profit organization that inspires disadvantaged, low-income girls to be Strong, Smart, and Bold. Passersby are encouraged to feel empowered to vote and/or organise their communities for a healthy planet. Aptart has been sharing creative outlets and amplifying the voices of marginalized groups since 2010 by transforming spaces, connecting communities, and sparking conversations.
Image © aptARTS
Dados Punto Cero recently painted a colourful mural of a young boy named Alex, who lives with Methylmalonic Acidemia. This rare disease prevents the body from breaking down proteins and fats properly and can cause life-threatening symptoms. Alex is shown in the mural playing with his measuring jug and syringe, which symbolize his unique way of life. Despite his challenges, he remains curious and easily plays with his apparatus. The mural aims to bring attention to Methylmalonic Acidemia and other rare diseases with inadequate research funding while also providing hope and reminding those affected that they are not alone.
Image © Dados Punto Cero
SMOK creates thought-provoking artworks that inspire people to appreciate nature, reflect on social issues, and find joy in their lives. One of his murals, “A Glimpse of Humanity,” is on display in Ronse. The mural depicts a mother chimpanzee with a sad expression, reflecting the pain and suffering in the world. However, her child shows joy and hope, symbolising the innocence and resilience that can be found even in dark times. SMOK’s artwork reminds us that love and resilience are the foundation of our humanity and can guide us through even the most challenging times. SMOK encourages us to spread kindness and warmth, no matter how small the act may be, to create a more compassionate and caring world.
Image © @street_art_hunting_ronny
Banksy created a powerful new piece with a clear message of peace titled “Stop War”. The artwork is located at Southampton Way and Commercial Way in Peckham, London, and features a stop traffic sign with a trio of Predator drones crossing it. The predator drones are depicted at an angle, mimicking the ducks traditionally seen on the wall in England, and are a reference to a previous Banksy artwork at the Walled Off Hotel in Palestine in March 2017.
The artwork is a clear call for a ceasefire in Gaza, where the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine has resulted in the loss of countless lives, including many innocent civilians and children. The image is a stark reminder of the devastating impact of war and the urgent need for peace.
Image © Banksy
We’re thrilled to bring you more exhilarating street art projects and murals in the upcoming year. To stay up-to-date with all the latest street art activities from Graffiti Street, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Also, visit our news page regularly for the latest updates and news on the street art scene.
We wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year and look forward to sharing our passion for street art with you in 2024.
Best regards, Team GS