potted plants and umbrellas

The other day I blogged about street art on a set of stairs in Amman.  Today I have a few photos that I took on a different  set of stairs.  They too were popular with locals and tourists, with small shops and a restaurant.  The difference is that this one had umbrellas.

below: Standing near the top of the stairs, high above reet.  Open umbrellas in shades of blue and purple are strung overhead to provide some shade and some colour.   On the right is a tall metal structure – that is an elevator for those who don’t feel like taking the stairs.

man blue, teal, and purple umbrellas, open, up high to provide shade over a set of stairs in Amman

below: There were a lot of little flower pots attached to the walls.  Some were painted in bright colours and some were terra cotta brown.

on a black wall, a profile silhouette in white of a man with headphones on, plants in terra cotta planters line the stairs that run beside the wall

 below: A line of flower pots on a white wall where people have written numbers, dates, names, and messages, especially proclamations of love with little hearts.

a group of terra cotta planters with small green plants in them, attached to a white wall on which people have written their names and other woards

below: Listen to the sound of your heart. It seems like Dalal loves Eyad.

anatomical looking picture of a human herat, coloured red, with an old fashioned gramaphone speaker coming out of the top of it, street art

below: A row of “books” under the window – they don’t seem to have titles.

on a wall, under a window with a blue frame, a line of flat pieces of wood painted in bright colours, that look like a row of books

colourful flower pots attached to a wall with plants in them

painting of a woman in a blue top on a black wall, that people have written their names on

below: Looking back up the stairs

looking up a staircase that is lined with flower pots and covered by many open umbrellas in Amman Jordan

Jadal and Al-Kalha stairs

The city of Amman is built on a series of hills, ridges, and valleys.  Many of the streets in the central part of the city run parallel to each other with few streets connecting them because of the hills.  The result is quite a few sets of stairs, often long and steep!  One set of stairs, Al-Kalha Stairs (top part) and Jadal Stairs (bottom part), has some small shops and cafes.  They connect downtown Amman with Jabal Al Weibdeh neighbourhhod. The walls on the side of the stairs have also been decorated with street art.

At the top of the stairs

street art based on the Jordanian flagbelow: A gold coloured face looks to the sky, by Batool Edais. 2018.  It’s difficult to tell now, but on the right one boy is standing on the back of another boy.

two street art paintings on the sides of a shuttered window. on the left, a gold coloured woman with braids looking to the sky, on the right, a person reaching for a piece of watermelon up on a shelf below: Laila Hajri has painted someone reaching for a section of watermelon.
street art painting with Arabic writing, a person reaching for a piece of watermelon up on a shelf

top portion of Kalha stairs in Amman with street art on the walls of the buildings beside the stairs

below: Mural by Wafa Asmar. The eyes, nose, and mouth on the girl were added after as were the black letters in blue swirl near the bottom (I rebel therefore I exist).

van gogh inspired blue swirls painted in a mural with an orange square in the center. in that square is a heart. To the right of the swirls is a pink vertical bar with a black picture silhouette of a girl holding a bunch of balloons

For my part I know nothing with any certainty but the sight of the stars makes me dream.

.

between two shuttered windows, a street art painting surrounded by white Arabic calligraphy on red, in the middle is the back of a dancer with red hat and long white robe tied at the waist, long skirt that twirls outward as dancer moves

black and white street art painting of Omar Shariff on a black background, some of the paint has begun to peel off black and white street art painting of a woman on a black background, some of the paint has begun to peel off

wings, the universal instagramable wings

on a wall beside a book store, a copy of Van Gogh's self portrait and a copy of his sunflowers painting, by Batool Edais

street art on Al Kahla stairs in Amman black stencil of a large building over the rooftops of Amman

multi coloured face with words below that say Don't let the noise of other people's opinions drown out your own.

“Don’t let the noise of others opinions drown out your own”

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below: Lots of people have added their names along with a note or two. black and white painting of a woman, 2 colours only, profile portrait

below: By the book seller’s table

shades of grey, stylized man's face on a wall behind a table with books on it

old and peeling street art painting of a green eye with lashes and eyelid on a wall with some books

at a bend in an outdoor set of stairs, art cafe signs, street art on the wall, Jadal stairs, Amman

below: Portraits by Miramar Mohammad (Miramar Al Nayyar) 2016.  Marcel Khalife, a Lebanese singer, composer, and oud player, is depicted on the left.  The other portrait is of Mahmoud Darwish, a Palestinian author and poet.

portraits of two men in grey tones, street art on a wall

on a blue background, street art painting of pink elephant's head, frontal view, with Indian symbols on it painting of a bald child with green shirt, yellow petals coming out of its head looking like a flower

walls of Terra Sancta College, Baladk 2016

Two of the walls that enclose the grounds of Terra Sancta College in Amman are covered with street art.  Most of it was painted as part of Baladk 2016 (art festival).  One of the walls features the red and white “name tags”, you know the ones that say “Hello, my name is….”.   The first one though has “city” instead of “name” because the general theme of Baladk 2016 was ‘Our City – The influence of the City upon yourself as an artist’.

below: Hello my city is Aman by aster.93

hello my city is - part of a series of hello my name is name tag based street art

end of wall as it turns corner, rounded corner

below: Black letters on the left by Kels aka Ali Amir and the red text (and DHAP Fam) are the mark of Deyaa Rambo

part of a series of hello my name is name tag based street art

part of a series of hello my name is name tag based street art

below: Yo! My name is Yaratun aka Yara Hindawi

yo my name is yaratun,

below: A name tag painted by DeevGraf aka Abdelrahman Hasan

part of a series of hello my name is name tag based street art

school grounds wall with street art on it, Amman Jordan,

Our friendship is magic – Wedad and Eslam

below: Bully Bully Bully  (more of theirs below)  Mike V. Derderian

on a brown wall, three comical white characters, male, with exaggerated features drawn in black, each has an orange stripe through their face with the word Bully written on it

below: A long necked bird (duck? goose?)

mural with a yellow duck with its white beak open and white paper boats all around

below: A small green stenciled duck

small green stencil of a duck on a blue metal gate

blue gate on the left, cars parked in front of, wall with street art, houses and other buildings in the background

below: The City is so Empty is the work of Hamza Al Salhi

street art painting of a young woman with long black hair with a head band tied around her head, black face, no facial features, instead a red heart on her forehead and the words The city is so empty

below: The octopus was painted by Ibrahim Tonnerieux

street art white octopus with black dots, blue eyes, on a blue and green background

below: A portrait of a young woman by Suhaib Attar, 2019

portrait of a young woman on a blue circle background, long brown hair, brown eyes, by Suhaib Attar

below: “Our City” graffiti by Ammar Sinan (siner) and Wize One aka Wesam Shadid

black car parked in front of a brown wall with street art on it, Amman

street art of a blue hair woman sitting on white paper boats below: On the left, the pink design is by Yazan Hija, aka arthudz.  On the right, piano keys over her head, Metallica Load in her ear, and leaves for hair, by Suha Sultan

two white cars parked in front of a wall of Terra Sancta college with two murals on it, one by Suha Sultan with a woman with a Metallica Load vinyl record on the side of her head, and the other a pink shape

below: …With an addition by Joanna Anwar Madanat

mural by Suha Sultan of a woman with a vinyl record on the side of her head, piano keys covering the top of the mural, a young boy sitting beside a cityscape behind the woman,

street art on a wall including a large grey circle made of Arabic calligraphy, a purple mass partially hidden by a car, and a yellow star with an eye

When the silence gets old, make your own noise.

street art on a wall in Amman, a yellow star with an open mouth with big teeth and one eye, looking to the left, Arabic writing and a phone number tag, remnants of a drawing street art

street art on a wall in Amman,- two blue stylized characters with arms curved towards each other and holding hands

below: another Wize One contribution

street art on a wall in Amman, a woman with big afro hair by many white paper boats and a character in pink and white, curved arms stylized face

red monster face painted on a wall

below: He’s thinking… or just resting his head? Street art by Miramar Al Nayyar

large mural in shades of grey, a man's head, chin on fist and trhe other hand resting on the other side of his head, on a wall, covering some older street art

below: His hand and wrist obscure older street art.

part of a large mural of a grey man covers an older street art painting of a blue robot on background made with red Arabic calligraphy

below:  On the left, an Arabic verse by Dina Fawakhiri

two graffiti pieces, on the left an Arabic verse written vertically and on the right, a red monter head and shoulders,

below: by Hind Al Far

mural on pink background of a young woman with long purple hair, flower crown on her head, and blue butterflies flying nearby, head and shoulders

More information on Baladk 2016

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As an aside, I saw one other Bully mural elsewhere in the city.  This knight in armor seemed to be on its own.

street art painting of a knight in armour holding a crown in his hand, bully written on shoulder of man and on crown

street art drawing of a caricature of a man, long pointy chin with beard, long hair in back, flat hat with large brim

Revolution Wall 2

The other day I posted some pictures of the art on the boards around the United Nations ESCWA building in Beirut (Feb 20, Let Lebanon Live).  The pictures in this blog post are from another Revolution Wall, by Art of Change, in the same neighbourhood.

on a grey wall in red letters, Revolution Wall Art of Change, peace written as a tag,

below: A rotten orange by dew (Ali Kadado) & renoz (renozoner).

On blue background, a young man holding up a large rotten orange, holding by the stem, street art by Dew and renoz

graffiti and street art on a Beirut wall

below: Wings of Freedom

wings of freedom graffiti

below: Close to a real heart

graffiti on a wall including a large heart that is anatomically close to real

metal and concrete barricades beside a wall covered with tags and graffiti

on a city street, low rise goldish brown stone buildings with graffiti and street art around the bottom layer

below: The count down is upside down

street art and protest graffiti on a wall, exterior

below: An archer fires red hearts in a painting by Lea Bou Habib

graffiti, an archer in blue top and shorts shoots a red heart from a bow

below: Stencil by markghsoub aka Markus

blue circle, red vertical stripe, black stencil of doves and other things in black

blue circle, red vertical stripe, black stencil of doves and other things in black along with a woman with a teal coloured bandana over the lower part of her face, a woman with long hair trying to hold onto a dove, all stencils

below: Throwing dice in a painting by Zein. street art of a hand throwing a pair of dice

grey wall in front of office building, with street art on the wall, Beirut

a woman's face with hair half blue and half pink, a large blue mouse that is screaming

below: Two pink mice

two pink mice painted on a wall in Beirut

below: Protesters throwing red hearts, not just any hearts, but hearts with the Lebanese cedar tree.

graffiti of a yellow circle with black silhouette of a person with a gas mask on, throwing a red heart
metal and concrete barricades, three white metal panels with graffit on them, a D, R and S on the panels

below: A Lebanese flag with the red stripe made of hearts, Our love for this country will overcome your greed for the green. street art of a Lebanese flag with the red stripes made of hearts, also the words Our Love for the country will overcome your green for the green

below: Three panels of bulls, cows, and words by Selim Mawad

three panels of drawings of cartoon bulls and cows by Selim Mawad

below: Close up of the middle panel

close up of a middle panel, work by Selim Mawad, black and white cows and bulls with Arabic writing

Scroll down to the previous blog post for more of Selim Mawad’s work.

some of Selim Mawad’s bulls

The stylized cows and bulls the artist Selim Mawad uses in his posters and street art can be seen in a number of places around Beirut, especially in central parts of the city where the protests of late 2019/early 2020 occurred.  This is one of them.

below: The series consists of nine panels of black and white illustrations with text in both Arabic and English.

a series of panels with black and white illustrations plus words in both Arabic and English, cows talking,

Enlargements of each panel

below: 1. We clean our public space and we clean our government.
2. Our bodies are waterproof. Your conscious is humanity-proof.

two of a series of panels with black and white illustrations plus words in both Arabic and English, cows talking,

below: Not enough to destitute them… We should hold them accountable.

one of a series of panels with black and white illustrations plus words in both Arabic and English, cows talking, cow in fancy suit with hands tied together

below: 1. Revolution is Freedom… Let him pass…  and go one with your revolution.
2. Shield your breath from pollution but not your face from Freedom…

two of a series of panels with black and white illustrations plus words in both Arabic and English, cows talking,

below: 1. Let us not say our last Chance… No! It is a first step towards Social Solution… and we are in charge…
2. Raise the awareness of our inner angry Bull to sustain our Revolt!  Discuss the constitution and amend it if we do not like it!

two of a series of panels with black and white illustrations plus words in both Arabic and English, cows talking,

below: From legitimate demands to structural change.. From legitimate revolt.. to social revolution…

one of a series of panels with black and white illustrations plus words in both Arabic and English, cows talking,

below: Please make way so we continue cleaning.

last panel in cow cartoon series

Let Lebanon Live

… Before I Die

Back in late October and early November 2019, one of the walls surrounding the Beiruti ESCWA (a United Nations building, Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia) building was transformed with graffiti and street art into a “Revolution Wall”.  It coincided with protests against bad governance, corruption and social injustice in Lebanon.  The  Art of Change movement was involved in painting the wall…  along with many Lebanese artist.  This is only one of such walls.

below: Caricatures of Lebanese officials along with two posters.  The one on the far left is by sumerziady 

light brown temporary wall outside, made of panels, now home to a revolution wall of art and graffiti, white faces, a poster by sumerziady and the words let Lebanon live before I die

below: A mouse wearing a hard hat and brandishing a sword.

a grey mouse in a hard hat holding a sword, graffiti on a wall

below: A wonderful black and rust coloured bird, by RenoZ,  It doesn’t seem fazed by the mouse with the sword.

realistic painting of a red and black bird on a branch, on a wall in Beirut

below: A monkey-faced man by Zein, a clenched fist rising out of the ground, and two green fighters in a no entry zone (or is it the Lebanese flag?).

graffiti, a man with a monkey face, a red and white do not enter sign with two green figures fighting,

below: Freedom, loud and clear.

looking along a wall full of protest street art including a large word freedom

below: Another Renoz painting, a skull on a chair from which a red rose is rising.

a skull sits on a red upholstered chair with wood arms and legs, on a blue background, also hand with lebanese flag, and the word resist

below: The man in the megaphone is signed Dewdle, the mark of Ali Kadado, a Lebanese artist.  Resist.

a black hand with a Lebanese flag over the palm beside a man's face, shouting with eyes closed, coming out of a megaphone, street art protest piece

below:  I am now feeling that my lack of Arabic means that I am missing a lot of what these mean.  For instance, the purple guy by Weesdom is saying something but I don’t know what.  I also suspect that the words written on the tap over the young man’s mouth are important, perhaps “Revolution even if you try to silence us”? (artwork by Roula Abdo).  The last one is in English but now some knowledge of Lebanese politics would be helpful –   a phone screenshot by phat2tg (ot the tg posse)

street art on the escwa wall in Beirut

wall of revolution, text in red paint on a wall in Beirut, along with other graffiti

below: Stencil by markghsoub aka Markus – a larger than life man standing in a shallow boat.

stencil of a man in arab dress walking and other graffiti

below: Title section, “Revolution Wall” featuring a clown with dollar signs flashing in his eyes by Ivan Debs.

revolution wall, title of all the street art collection, on escwa wall, protest art, Beirut, clown face, green tree, closed fist,

below: Caricature mugshots.  Lebanese government officials as Jokers as they go off to jail.

graffiti on a Beirut wall, caricature mug shos of 4 Lebanese men, green hair and clown mouths, wearing black and white striped tops

below: Another markghsoub stencil

black stencil of two people looking into the distance, on top of a green circle along with a red and white dove

can you smell the madness is written in red across some other graffiti

below: Dancing while the bombs fall by Zein.

white ballet dancer with skirt twirling as she spins, black bombs dropping around her. graffiti on a wall

below: Giving the peace sign, a man in a red and white shirt by fasewho aka Oliver Matar (He also painted the large word ‘Freedom’ a few pictures back). The head with all the people as hair is another painting by Roula Abdo.

a head with stick figure people with arms upward as hair, and a strip of cloth in form of Lebanese flag across bridge of nose and cheeks, by Roula Abdo alongside a man in a red and white shirt on a green background, both graffiti on a wall

below: A bunch of balloons, most in the colours of the Lebanese flag by ilatk aka Ilat Knayzeh  on one side, and on the right is a woman stenciled on top of a circular pattern by  ZaFeelz aka Zayna Ayyad

Beirut Revolution Art wall, two pieces, circlar art with woman's face stenciled in black, a painting of balloons and lebanese flag

below: Among the profanity, two calligraphy pieces by Ghaleb Hawila

two calligraphy graffiti pieces on a wall in Beirut

below: An intricate and detailed black and white drawing by @rasharahal

protest graffiti in Beirut, a black and white line drawing by rasharahal

below: A closer look at the top part

close up of the top half of the poster - protest graffiti in Beirut, a black and white line drawing by rasharahal

There is an Instagram page devoted to collecting the 2019 Lebanese Art of Revolution, or Art of Thawra.  Check it out if you are interested seeing more of this type of art.

Hamra murals

Most of the graffiti and street art that I saw recently in Beirut was political (protest) in nature but there were also some large murals covering the sides of multi-storey buildings in the Hamra district of the city.

below: Picture of  Emily Nasrallah and Huguette Caland by Roula Abdo and Mary Shammas for Art of Change and

a mural on the side of a building of two older women, Emily Nasrallah and Huguette Caland, with arms linked with extra arms, coloured ribbons winding between and around them

below: A mural of a woman, Sabah, by Yazan Halwani surrounded by Arabic calligraphy

high on a wall, a large mural by Yazan Halwani of a woman's head and shoulders, surrounded by Arabic letters and words. she is seen in profile, smiling as she looks away

below: From a distance it just looks like black squiggles covering the mural. In fact it is interlocking characters and animals, especially faces with big lips. It was painted by Potato Nose aka Jad El Khoury.  Have you noticed the little man standing on the roof?

multi storey residential buildings, one has a large mural on the side of it, blue with a lighter blue semi-circle, with black squiggles all over it

below: This mural, titled “Pagano” is the work of South American artist Inti.  It was painted in 2012 as part of the White Wall Beirut project that year.

tall Inti mural in Hamras Beirut, of a boy holding onto a goat, boy wearing hooded jacket and a necklace

head of boy in mural

holding onto a goat in a mural, other little men

below: Unfortunately I don’t know who painted this or what the words say

large mural on the side of a building in Hamras Beirut, purple background with white Arabic writing on it below: One wall of the Mayflower Hotel is covered with this mural by apocaleps

tall narrow mural of part of a man's face, with blue hair and blue mustache, by apocaleps

little things in Amman

As I walked around Amman, I saw a few small pieces of graffiti and street art.

below: A metal box with half a face on the left and Arabic writing on the right side.

metal box on street painted, dark blue background, left half is half a face while right side is Arabic letters in yellow

below: We claim the sea

stencil on a wall, black letters that say we claim the sea

below: Keeping an eye on the stairs.

realistic painting of an eye on a wall between two windows on a set of stairs

below: A very small fellow walking with his hat

a little black stick figure person painted on a stone wall

below: A beetle climbing a wall

a black beetle graffiti on a yellow wall graffiti on a wall on a wall beside a driveway, a blue and white graffiti

below: She flies by her own wings. she flies by her own wings, written words painted on a wall, graffiti

below: My wishness marshamello (marshmallow?)

my wishness love marshmallow, words wirtten on a wall, graffiti

below: Blue beard and long hair.

a blue graffiti painting on a wall, down low near the ground, of a man with beard and long hair.

large murals in Al Hashmi Al Shamali

Most of the murals in this area of Amman were painted as part of one of the annual Baladk Urban Arts Festivals held in collaboration with the Al Balad Theatre.  These festivals started in 2013 – the murals that I saw here were all from 2017 through 2019.

below: In the foreground is a large mural by Fintan Magee. (2018)
three large murals in a row, in the foreground is one of a girl by Finton Magee, the next is an old woman with a red circle in the background and the third is a colourful woman with ribbons by Dina Saadi

below: by Suhaib Attar, 2017

large mural of a woman in black and white and grey tones, with a large red circle behind her head

below: “Reflections” painted by Dubai-based artist  Dina Saadi as part of Baladk 2018

large mural in Amman of a woman looking in a hand held mirror, with hair tied in two buns and lots of colourful ribbons around her head

close up of the head, a woman in profile, in the mural painted by Dina Saadi

below: A portrait of Jordanian artist Suhaib Attar painted by French artist Don Mateo

large mural in Al Hashmi Al Shamali in Amman of a man in black and red

below: This girl with the orange and green is also by Don Mateo.

large murals in Amman

close up of a mural, a girls face, on a wall with two windows, one of the windows has two flower pots

below: Local vocals.  This is not part of Baladk but I couldn’t find any more information on the mural – who painted it or whose portraits these are.

white background, blue paint, mural of a music group with 5 members, part of local vocals

below: From 2019, a blue haired woman by ZiNk aka Ibtehal Al Dous

a turquoise truck is parked on a residential street in Amman beside a mural of woman with blue hair and a purple jacket, she has her eyes closed

below: A large portrait by Hombre, aka Pablo Fontagnier (Baladk 2018)

fontal portrait of a person with short black hair and green eyes

below: “Imagine” by sourati  – Imagine to believe in yourself.  Imagine to step beyond limitations and try something new. (2019)

large mural of a woman wearing a grey top, eyes closed and dreaming of doves, the title is imagine and it was painted by sourati, on the side of a large building in Amman

below: A whimsical drawing by sourati – a man, a woman, and a cat all with their heads sticking out of the roof of their own little houses.

small street art on a concrete wall, whimsical drawings by sourati of people in small houses withtheir heads sticking out of the roofs , a moon in the sky and also a cat sticking its head out of a small house,

below: And last, I am not sure what the word says, but she seems to have a hole where her heart should be.

muddied old mural on a wall around a courtyard, a car parked beside