When I was living in Mumbai and was looking for a place to rent in 2012, I was invited to check out a house in Bandra (which I eventually did stay in for the next 3-4 years with awesome flatmates – the best till date) in a tiny little lane called Chapel Road. The name of the road sounds romantic, and it was in a way the most colourful part of the city – complete with hundreds of autos and bikes, people roaming around in beach shorts and colorful skirts, vegetable markets, grocery stores and beer stalls. And there, right in front of a murir-dokaan (or neighbourhood bhel/ snacks shop) was this huge wall mural of the ever-glamorous Madhubala.
It remains one of my most favourite wall paintings ever. I did a story on the artist (….) and followed his work for a long time in the hope that I will somehow, someday be good enough to lend him a hand. Then in Delhi too I walked across this mural of a lady draped in a saree, sitting atop a tiger. Somehow it reminded me of the goddess Durga – who rides a lion and shows massive strength by killing demons. Maybe that’s what this one was also supposed to be about – find your inner strength and fight whatever is scaring you – be it people, work, or even yourself.
But a recent discussion on wall murals brought me back to it. And I realized there are such beautiful art works everywhere. Some by artists who prefer to not be known, some by artists who have a day-time job, and some by the artist you never thought would do anything cool.
Here are some of the best wall murals I found on the group. Do you have some recommendations too? Or maybe photos of murals to share?
And while you are at it, why don’t you read this insightful piece from Nat Geo about the most powerful murals and where you can spot them on your travels? And here is a fun piece on how to get the best photos in front of murals in Houston. Well, why not?