Cairo artists sustain revolution with graffiti

In this Thursday, March 22, 2012, photo, an Egyptian couple walks past a mural depicting military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, on the left side of the face and ousted president Hosni Mubarak, right side, with Arabic that reads, "who assigned you did not die, No for gas export to Israel, the revolution continues," at Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt. AP Photo/Nasser Nasser

(AP) CAIRO - After Egypt's ruling military sealed off streets around Cairo's Tahrir Square with walls of imposing concrete blocks, a group of artists decided to reopen the avenues on their own — in the public imagination, at least.

On one of the walls, they painted an exact trompe-l'oeil reproduction of the street behind it, as if it were open. The perspective painting matches up with the architecture of the neighboring buildings and even has some "pedestrians" strolling along the boulevard. The street's new name is "No Walls Street."

The graffiti piece is the work of the Revolution Artists Association, a group of young Egyptian artists who say the uprising against authorities in the country continues a year after the fall of President Hosni Mubarak.

They have covered walls around Tahrir Square, the epicenter of the anti-Mubarak uprising, with graffiti art, including portraits of protesters killed by security forces or the military.

Other graffiti pieces campaign for the rights of women or against humiliating "virginity tests" that soldiers conducted on detained female protesters. Others denounce military rule.

In recent days, protesters have taken to the streets to denounce Islamists' domination of an assembly created to write the next constitution and to protest authorities' slowness in prosecuting those accused in dozens of deaths during a soccer riot earlier this year.

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