Boulevard Vincent Auriol would have been a perfectly uninteresting boulevard, were it not for the paintings one can find on the walls that surround it. Paris’ 13th district is famous for street art and if you care to have a look you can actually discover an open air gallery of international artists.
Alltough I stumble upon new street art regularly, some of the most impressive (and semi permanent) wall paintings I have discovered so far can be found between the metro stations Nationale and Chevaleret.
Close to the Nationale station (on walking distance from Place d’Italie) there are three painted arcades of which one is done by Jerry Batista, a Brazilian artist. A bit further up heading eastwards you will find a larger-than-life portrait of a woman by American street art guru Obey on your right hand, a bit in the same style of the famous Obama picture.
The most stunning view in my opinion is the one pictured in the photo of this article. An entire maternity school has been revamped into a funky fresco by local artist Zdey, whereas in the background an immense ballerina colors up a flat building. Walk a bit further and on the right you will see another beautiful work of a veiled woman surrounded with flowers, done by Inti – an artist from Chile this time.
It is the gray flat blocks that make the area suitable for street art, the very opposite of the classic Parisian Hausmannian facades.