Train cars are often canvases for street art, legal and illegal. What is it about trains that catches our imagination?
Our first post in this series spoke about the controversial nature of graffiti on trains. This post follows it up with some fabulous painted train cars from Europe, including four painted during a live event in Paris sponsored by a very smart and forward looking train manufacturer.
Our first stop is Malmö, Sweden for this snazzy number.
And here’s an in your face sort of piece from nearby Copenhagen in 1999.
To Berlin, with love on the Anhalter Bahnhof.
Here are some delightful colors from Rome.
The Graffiti Meets Thalys live event in 2009 gave four major graffiti artists: Seak One (Köln), Sozy One (Brussels), JonOne 156 (Paris), and Zedz (Amsterdam), the opportunity to paint one train car each during a three hour and fifteen minute stop at the Gare du Nord Station in Paris before the train continued its journey. The event was sponsored by the train manufacturer Thalys, who picked some of the best graffiti artists on the planet to decorate and stir up some buzz about their new train. Now that’s some smart marketing! Note that the artists thoughtfully taped off the windows to avoid painting over them.
Zedz is known for his architectural style that leans heavily on the abstract. He is also a sculptor. You can check out his website here.
Sozy One began as a design student and a counterfeiter, but has gained respect as a founding member of UltraBoyz, a cream of the crop, avant-garde graffiti crew. You can read their blog here.
JonOne 156 was born in New York City, but moved to Paris in 1987, where he synthesized 1980s street art from NYC with that of European artists and also began to paint on canvas.
Seak One is a contemporary artist with a futuristic flair. You can check out his varied body of work, much of which hangs at major museums around the world, at his website.