Chelyabinsk street art project

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If you keep your eyes open, you’ll see surprises in this factory city.

Maybe you’ve already heard about this project, which became internet-famous for its Elon Musk artwork. At first I assumed the city administration was responsible. Nope! It’s all thanks to Челябинский урбанист and his ideas for improving Chelyabinsk.

Челябинский урбанист, aka Lev Vladov, is a local celebrity and perhaps the city’s biggest Instagram / YouTube star. He shares ideas on how to make Chelyabinsk a better place to live.

You can find the details (in Russian) of this art campaign on his website. Most of the art cost 4k RUB / $60 USD – 11k RUB / $170 USD in donations. It’s an incredible change from what these utility boxes usually look like…

How any available advertising space looks in Chelyabinsk.
Much cooler, right?

I’ve been taking photos ever since seeing this painted utility box last August. ⇩

Update: they’ve since painted this one over. It’s back to a utilitarian gray. 🙁 People will be papering it with ugly ads any day now.

The Nikola Tesla art is probably my favorite creation.⇩

The newest art I’ve discovered is this city map in front of South Ural State University. ⇩

See what it looked like before.

Pushkin wins the Tragic Endings award. You can see the incredible original art and read the full story in Russian here. In short: someone with authority decided to paint over most of the artwork. The artist responded with words that reference one of Pushkin’s own lines. ⇩

“I was given a handcrafted memorial but a utility worker painted over it. PS: The utility worker’s name was D’Anthès.” (D’Anthès was the man who shot and killed Pushkin in 1837.)

Also, cats seem to be a popular theme. ⇩

While most of the artwork is colorful and modern, some paintings look back into the past. ⇩

Have you seen any utility box artwork like this where you live? Which of these paintings is your favorite? 🙂

Extra: Here’s one more Chelyabinskii Urbanist project: a garage transformed into a bookshelf.

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