Graffiti in Berlin

Berlin has been a reference for graffiti culture since the 1980s. The city has attracted artists from all over the world due to its poweful art scene and alternative culture, which continues to thrive to this day.

Berlin’s unique history, marked by the division created by the Berlin Wall, led many people to use graffiti as a form of political and social expression. During the Cold War, the Berlin Wall became a canvas for graffiti artists and citizens who wanted to express themselves, giving life to the largest open-air gallery on the planet on the Western side of the city, where the wall was not militarized.

In contrast, on the Eastern side controlled by the Soviet Union, the wall was heavily guarded, making graffiti not as easy or abundant, but incredibly meaningful. In that territory, graffiti was one of the few ways to express ideas that couldn’t be manifested in any other form.

It is relevant to note that graffiti was born in the Bronx neighborhood of New York, with the purpose of publicly and visibly expressing dangerous ideas. Therefore, the connection with Berlin was deep, and soon the graffiti community embraced the cultural identity of the city of Berlin.

Spray cans

Today, graffiti remains a popular form of art and expression in Berlin. Both local and international artists come to the city to display their works on streets and buildings, as Berlin continues to be a global reference in this field. It is important to highlight that the local government’s tolerant policy towards graffiti has contributed to the abundance of artwork that can be found in the city, although it doesn’t mean it’s allowed in all places and circumstances.

Regardless of whether it’s to your personal taste or not, to understand Berlin’s character, it’s essential to grasp that graffiti holds significant cultural importance for the city and carries a strong history for its inhabitants.

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