Today, I want to highlight two recent murals by Hyuro that I am completely in love with. In both murals, space is as important as content, and the two are intertwined. It’s been a long while since we’ve covered Hyuro on Vandalog, but she’s one of my favorite European muralists for her unique mix of anger, struggle, and beauty.
This first mural from is back in July. It was painted on what Hyuro describes as “a third age care center” in Poggibonsi, Italy for DOTS Festival. Kudos goes in part to the curators at DOTS for this one. The wall in a prime location, facing traffic on what looks to be a curved road. You can probably spot this mural for blocks. Potential wall-hunters, look out for locations like these. Of course, not every artist could do something worthy of such a wall, but Hyuro did.
Rather than pulling out a random page from her sketchbook and turning it into festival-friendly muralvomit, Hyuro painted something specifically for that wall and that building. On a spot that could just as easily have been turned into a massive billboard for a naked woman to sell Coca-Cola (brief aside: That joke doesn’t work if you’re stealing it to sell it), Hyuro’s highly-visible mural honors the building’s residents, a group who are all too often ignored. And yet, that message isn’t overbearing. The mural is, first and foremost, a quiet moment for meditation.
For this mural, Hyuro factored in the setting around her wall and on the other side of it, the whole environment. Hyuro responded intelligently and skillfully to the unique space and the opportunity presented to her. Isn’t that supposed to be a core tenet of quality street art? And yet, work like Hyuro’s is all too rare.
And then there’s Espacios de empoderamiento, which Hyuro painted just a few weeks ago for Fate Festival in San Potito Sannitico, Italy. As the subject for a mural, a group of women standing around and talking is already notable (a Bechdel-Wallace test for street art and muralism is long overdue). Hyuro takes things a step further by playing with scale. Even the side of a building cannot contain these women. This space for empowerment extends beyond the wall, up into the sky and out onto the pavement. Such a simple tweak took what would have been a good mural and made it great.
There are a lot of reasons to like what Hyuro does. Maybe you like her skills with a brush, which she has in spades. Or you appreciate her politics, which are underrepresented in street art and contemporary muralism. But, with these two murals at least, it’s her appreciation of space that any artist working outdoors can learn from.
Photos by Marco Tani and courtesy of Hyuro