You can call it vandalism or you can call it art, one thing is for certain: Ljubljana is rich with creative street art and colourful graffiti. Some are just regular funny writings on the wall and some are true art pieces that should probably hang in someone’s living room. Take a walk around town and see them for yourself.
The walls are full of stories and Ljubljana Graffiti Tour proudly vocalizes their secret and colorful messages. This free walking alternative tour treats the facades of Ljubljana like a giant canvas on which social, political and cultural changes are depicted. Our local streetwise guides are celebrating the 5th anniversary of the tour with much applause and will make this first alternative, free street art tour an eye-opening experience. It will immerse you in a constantly evolving mix of Ljubljana’s urban graffiti gallery and street art culture.
You will learn about the roots of the movement – from partisan resistance to the subcultural scene of the 1980s – and see what the walls are saying today. Follow contemporary urban art through the Old Town, along the banks of the Ljubljanica River, pass the Rog Factory only to join the grand finale in the autonomous cultural zone of Metelkova (Ljubljana), right in the heart of the alternative scene, where you will hear first-hand recommendations for the best events of the evening.
Take a walk on the colorful side of the town with the Ljubljana Graffiti Tour!
Graffiti are (il)legal
It needs to be said though, graffiti are officially illegal, but there are some spots where they are perfectly acceptable. Take Metelkova mesto for instance, the whole place is one big art show. Sculptures, graffiti, so many stickers, you can’t even count them. Everywhere you look there’s something creative and arty. There’s a basketball court at Metelkova where spraying graffiti is totally okay. I wonder if anyone comes to play basketball here, it seems the only sport that’s popular on this court is spray painting. And I find it funny how often these graffiti get repainted. The ones you see in this blog post, may not be there anymore when you decide to visit Metelkova.
Somewhat similar to Metelkova is Rog and everytime I go pass it, there’s something new on its outer walls. Like this Roman guy who is there to protect Rog from demolition. As you can see, someone didn’t like this thought and sprayed a long black line across it. I guess it’s tough being a graffiti artist.
One graffiti please
I find it interesting how graffiti are often associated with an “underground” subculture that rebels against authority and capitalism and yet there’s possible to find graffiti that are made to order. Like this one below, which was commissioned by a telecommunications company as a part of their anti-hate speech campaign. It contains slogans such as “Speak love” and “The power of words”. It also features this cool hand sign, which signals the letters L and J, meaning Ljubljana. How radical is this? The piece is indeed fascinating, though the obvious pink line and black spiral suggests that someone from the graffiti world wasn’t so pleased.
If you want to enjoy graffiti and other street art in Ljubljana, all you need to do is just to take a walk. Observe and form your own opinion. But if you want to learn more, then I’d suggest you take the Ljubljana Graffiti Tour. It’s free, very interesting and in a little less than two hours you visit many graffiti spots and learn quite a lot from them, who made them and why.