The city of Aalborg, in Denmark, has become an open-air art gallery thanks to the long-running ‘Out in the Open ’ mural project, curated by Kirk gallery. This year, they are celebrating its 10th anniversary!
Murals from Wes21 & Onur, Guido Van Helten, Conor Harrington, Faith 47, Sepe & Tone, Bezt, Herakut, David Walker, Seth, Vhils, Telmo Miel, Oliver Vernon, Fintan Magee, Joram Roukes and Nils Westergard are just a few of the exceptional artists that have contributed to Aalborg’s open-air Museum over the decade and this year nine new murals will be added.
The first mural introduced this year to ‘Out in the Open’ 2023 was by Argentine Martin Ron and his Australian assistant Matt Gorick with ‘Olivia and her Heart of Gold’ to life. At the same time, artist Cristian Blanzer began painting his mural ‘Contraluz’ on the Rooftop of Friis Shopping Centre in Aalborg. French artist Hopare finished his mural ‘Trine’ in downtown Aalborg. Then we saw Curtis Hylton’s mural titled ‘Nightingale and the Rose’, inspired by the romantic fairy tale by Oscar Wilde (1854-1900). After the summer break, Akut packs a punch with his mural ‘Fallen King‘.
The next artist to paint was Manolo Mesa, who started in the graffiti scene with his older brother Francisco in 2002. He enjoyed painting on the streets, and after attending the University of Fine Arts in Seville in 2008, Manolo Mesa decided to put aside the more traditional graffiti world to start his pictorial work on walls. Now, he is known for large-scale, spray-painted mural work. Focusing on ceramics for ‘Out in the Open’ 2023, the artist describes his mural as a story connected to the past.
Manolo Mesa ‘An Anonymous House’
“In the material there is an intrinsic meaning in itself, like the meanings that we already assign to it. We find in it a connection with space and everyday objects, sometimes found, inherited, anonymous and full of words that evoke a recognizable and close place.
When we talk about a ceramic jug we are not just talking about how to keep the temperature of the liquid or the motives on the jug. These are just the functions of it. The jug also presents a story connected to the past.
To place an everyday-tool like this is the middle of a mural is a way of recognizing the past and our grandparents and the meaning the jug has had to these people. It’s about the artistic practice serving to identify the value of the many layers and personal values a jug like has meant to people.”Manolo Mesa
Photo credit Lene Kirk gallery