The Street Artists’s revival of San Felipe, Panama City. Discover painting and artists thanks to Darrin Duford
Article by Darrin DuFord for the FatCap Team.
While the colonial buildings in Panama City’s San Felipe neighborhood (also called Casco Viejo) are being restored at a frenzied pace, street artists have been exercising their own method of beautifying the remaining surfaces.
In March of 2012, Urban Heartbeat, a traveling public art project organized by German Jim Avignon, Nicaraguan Alicia Zamora, and Mexican Holger Beier, visited Panama, where they worked with a dozen Panamanian artists to paint the walls surrounding San Felipe’s open-air basketball court. Along with the neighborhood’s temporary construction barriers, abandoned lots, and garbage bins, the court now wears the work of the city's street artists.
Originally from Bogota, Panama-based Camila Bernal contributed this piece to the collage surrounding the basketball court at the end of San Felipe's Calle. The paint was barely a couple days old when I found it. "Creating a group piece has allowed me to learn the techniques and forms of my fellow artists," Bernal told me in an email interview when I asked her about her experiences at the basketball court. "I reaffirmed my love of murals, and I felt the need to make art responsibly, since each work that is exposed to the city can affect the surroundings in a positive way."
A piece painted by Annie Pereda appears on the sidelines of the San Felipe basketball court. Annie’s art has also appeared in installations in Buenos Aires, where she went for postgraduate studies.
Jacqueline Brandwayn's distinctive stenciled legs can be found poking up on walls around San Felipe. Her installation at the basketball court towers over all its admirers.
Originally from the States and now living in Panama, artist Thomson Moore created a series of works last year inspired by Panama’s food carts. In Urban Heartbeat’s installation, Moore adapted one of his carts, created with paste-ups and paint, to a corner space at the entrance of the basketball court.
Gladys Turner Bosso
This work, comprised of paste-ups, stencils, and paint, is Gladys Turner Bosso's first piece of street art.
Artist Rolo de Sedas picked up on the real-life setting of water lapping up against a beachfront building that served as his canvas. Like several other Panamanian street artists, he also works with watercolor and oil on traditional canvas.