Beautiful Street Art in a Yogyakarta Alley

Yogyakarta, Indonesia — December 2010

You can’t help noticing the splashes of colors in certain spots in Yogyakarta. You noticed them when you’re stopped in traffic and in intersections: little painted figures, or small rectangles of painted scenes.

But we hit the jackpot when we came across this alley where the whole stretch of wall has been covered with colorful murals.This alley is off Malioboro Boulevard, the main shopping/tourist street in Yogyakarta, right next to Ibis Hotel.

A mural in Yogyakarta
A mural in Yogyakarta

A mural in Yogyakarta

A mural in Yogyakarta

Details of one of the murals.

A mural in Yogyakarta

At first I thought the murals were part of the ‘Sama-sama/You’re welcome‘ project,

an international collaboration and exchange program between San Francisco and Indonesian artists, designed to foster an understanding of contemporary art and culture between the communities” —

A project that was started by the same group who was responsible for creating the Clarion Alley murals in San Francisco. But I can’t seem to confirm that.

Regardless, Yogyakarta has always been an artsy-fartsy town, a city where artists, whether they’re dancers, painters, or silversmiths, are held in high regard. So I’m not surprised to see that it has also embraced street arts as an art form.

It’s another thing to add to the list of reasons why Yogyakarta is one of our favorite big cities in Indonesia.

We’re not really sure where we’re going to end up after our RTW trip which will start in April, but it would definitely be nice to end up in a place that encourages public arts. It gives a place a different kind of vibe and a personality, don’t you think? Or are we just helpless yuppies?

Related post:
Murals on San Francisco’s Clarion Alley

Do you agree that public arts give a city a personality ? If so, what do they say about the city you live in?

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5 Replies to “Beautiful Street Art in a Yogyakarta Alley”

    1. Me too — and stumbling across something completely unexpected like this can and did make my day. Thanks for coming by, Chris.

  1. Very cool alley, and shots! Gotta love it when you just happen to "stumble" upon these things.

    Are you guys planning to hit Chile? The city of Valparaiso has amazing neighbourhoods filled with art like this…loved it!

    1. Yes, we're going to pass through Chile — thanks for the tip. I might just have to bug you as we get closer to Chile for your very helpful recommendations 🙂

  2. These are great! Haven't been to Yogyakarta before, but love coming across street art in cities. Graffiti art definitely has become uber hip lately, but I still think it's a great way to give a city personality and revitalize run-down areas.

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