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Manila Street Art Thrives in These Places

by Jem Sagcal

City living tends to be chaotic. The fast-paced lifestyle is aggravated by daily stressors like heavy traffic and poor urban planning. But street art offers a beacon of hope, providing beauty and inspiration if you know where to look.

INSTAGRAM: knives_ash19

Fortunately, there is art all around us in the Metro, and talented Filipino street artists have filled the city with murals and quirky art pieces that lend each corner a distinct personality. Here are some spots where you can take them in:

1. Around Makati

INSTAGRAM: d.davad & geraldparra

Does work bring you to the Makati CBD every day? Strolling through the business district's underpasses and along Dela Rosa Street doesn’t have to be stressful. Candy-colored murals by contemporary artists such as Rai Cruz and Quatro line the walkways, and if you look up at the ceilings of the underground passageways, you're bound to find something that will catch your eye as well.

2. Bonifacio Global City

INSTAGRAM: knives_ash19 & denneeboi

The commercial hub of BGC offers so much more than shopping and dining. The massive, evocative murals and interactive art pieces strategically scattered around the area continue to be buzz-worthy, and provide a playful touch of color and life to the urban jungle. "Pilandok" by Egg Fiasco and "A Hamsa Hand" by LA-based artist Bunnie Reiss are among the most popular. They're the perfect backdrop to your double-tap-worthy OOTDs!

3. Intramuros

INSTAGRAM: avocadoooo

The Graffiti Wall Skate Park, a playground for young skateboarders, is naturally home to amazing graffiti. Here, writing and drawing on the walls is completely legal and encouraged, and the walls have become the locals' means of expressing themselves and showcasing their talent. And since Intramuros is steeped in centuries-old history and Filipino tradition, the skate park introduces a nice contrast with its grittier, alternative culture.

4. Nagtahan Bridge

INSTAGRAM: nccaofficial

If you cross this bridge (now known as Mabini Bridge) in Manila every day during your commute, you've probably noticed that its columns are adorned with paintings of our National Heroes. The vibrant works of art are a unique, striking reminder of all the valiant souls who have fought for our freedom, and a reason to spark curiosity while fuelling our courage and patriotism.

5. UP Diliman


Plenty of renowned Filipino artists (the likes of Guillermo Tolentino and Vicente Manansala, to name a few) graduated from the reputable University of the Philippines, so it’s no surprise that the campus in Diliman is filled with inspiring and thought-provoking art. Not only aesthetically pleasing, these murals serve as depictions of the Filipino way of life and commentaries on our values and culture, imbued with powerful social relevance and significance.

6. The Collective

INSTAGRAM: _dcotejar

A paradise for art lovers of all ages, The Collective in Malugay, Makati is the place to be for a triple treat of good music, good food, and great art. In every nook and cranny, expect to find stunning visual art that perfectly complements the urban nightlife scene. It remains one of the coolest and liveliest yet most low-key hangouts in the city, and is a great spot to get your creative juices flowing while having fun with like-minded people.

RELATED: 10 Makati Must-Dos You Shouldn't Miss Out On, and 10 Things to Cross Off Your Manila Bucket List.

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About Jem
Jem is a freelance writer and editor with articles published online and in print for various publications, like MVNDO Magazine, L’Officiel Manila, and adobo magazine. In her spare time, she doubles as a scriptwriter and copywriter for video advertisements.

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