Intriguing Street Art in Krakow, Poland

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Looking for street art was high on my list of things to do in Krakow, and I found some excellent art.

Krakow has very impressive murals, as well as some political and thought-provoking artworks on its walls.

The two parts of the city where you’ll find the best examples of local street art are Jewish Quarter of Krakow (Kazimierz) and Podgórze across the river.

I’ve added the addresses of most of the street art pieces in this article, to help you find them on the map when you walk around the city.

Street Art in Kazimierz (The Jewish Quarter of Krakow)

The Jewish Quarter in Krakow is the trendy, bohemian part of the city.

Amidst all the vintage shops, indie galleries and hipster cafes, it’s not surprising that Kazimierz street art is blooming.

When you go looking for the best street art and graffiti in Krakow, this is the place to start.

Judah – Famous street art piece in Krakow

This is a beautiful black and white street art piece, commissioned by the Jewish Culture Festival, that’s a huge event in Krakow. It was created by Israeli artist Pilpeled.

Judah - Made by Pilpeled for the Jewish Culture Festival
Judah – Street art made by Pilpeled for the Jewish Culture Festival

The young girl that looks a bit like a character from The Lion King is wearing a lion’s head, which according to the artist is a symbol of Israel, being both young and tough.

In the not so distant past, this part of the city used to be dodgy and even dangerous, but it has evolved into Krakow’s hipster hub.

That’s why what used to be a dark parking lot is now full of food trucks. Unfortunately the artwork is partially hidden by the food trucks, but you can see it in full on the artist’s Instagram.

 

A post shared by PILPELED (@pilpeled) on

Address: ul. Św Wawrzyńca 16

Broken Finger – Black & White street art in Kazimierz

This massive mural is hard to miss. It was created by a street art crew from Israel called Broken Fingaz.

The piece mixes Jewish elements with Art Nouveau style paintings in black and white.

The text at the top says broken finger in Yiddish. Underneath it you’ll see the words E.M. Lilien. It’s a tribute to Ephraim Moses Lilien, a Jewish Art Nouveau illustrator from Krakow.

Broken Finger Mural in the Jewish Quarter
Broken Finger Mural in Kazimierz

This impressive piece of street art was also commissioned by the annual Jewish Culture Festival.

It’s located inside a parking lot, and while the owner isn’t very happy with people coming in to take photos, it can also be seen from a parallel street.

Address: Plac Bawół 3

Galicia Jewish Museum, Krakow – A huge wall mural

The outer wall of the Jewish Museum in Kazimierz has a huge, beautiful mural in black, white and yellow.

Galicia Jewish Museum - Krakow street art
Galicia Jewish Museum

It was created by Marcin Wierzchowski and features Jewish symbols alongside famous buildings in Krakow.

Address: ul. Dajwór 18

I’m Happy Again – Krakow’s Banksy-style art (but it’s by someone else!)

A cool piece using the pipe at a street corner for Gene Kelly’s character from Singing in the Rain to wrap his arm around.

I'm happy again by trololo - Krakow street art
I’m happy again!

I have a feeling this is a very instagrammable street corner in Krakow 😉

Not sure if there are any hidden messages behind this one… It certainly makes people smile when they pass by.

I was told this was made by Banksy, but later found out that the street artist behind it is called Mr. Trololo and you can see more of his art around the city of Krakow.

Murals of historical figures of Kazimierz

This series of portraits across a wall in Jozefa Street blends nicely with the street itself.

Historical Figures of Kazimierz - Helena Rubinstein
Historical Figures of Kazimierz

It depicts five historical characters from the district: King Kazimierz the Great, Esterka, the king’s lover, Prince Joseph II, Karol Knaus, a local architect and Helena Rubinstein (of the cosmetics company) who was born in Kazimierz.

Historical Figures of Kazimierz - Esterka
Esterka

There’s a plaque next to each painting with some details about each character.

Address: ul. Józefa 17

More great street art from Kazimierz

And those who were seen dancing - Nietzsche quote Graffiti
And those who were seen dancing – Nietzsche quote in Krakow
Street Art in Kazimierz - Trump and Hillary

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump – Krakow street art

ulica Nowa colourful street art Krakow
Colourful street art on Nowa Street, Krakow

Street Art in Podgórze District in Krakow

When you cross the Vistula River you arrive from Kazimierz to the district of Podgórze.

This part of the city has some very interesting pieces of street art to discover.

The Rainbow Stairs in Krakow – Colourful street art quotes

Rainbow Steps Krakow

The cheerful Krakow rainbow steps have inspiring quotes by famous people, like Einstein or Buddha, written on each step.

You can read the quotes going up or down the stairs (if you can read Polish).

Rainbow Steps Quotes

LOVE street art? Read more about my street art discoveries in London, Zagreb, Tel Aviv and Madrid

Symbols of Podgórze mural

This district used to be separate from Krakow and joined the city in 1915.

The mural was painted in 2015 to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the event.

Symbols of Podgórze Mural

The deer as well as the oak leaves are typical symbols of the district. The wall at the bottom refers to the walls of the Jewish Ghetto located in Podgórze during WWII.

Address: ul. Lwowska 14A

Ding Dong Dumb – Political Krakow street art

This is an impressive mural which makes strong statement.

Ding Dong Dumb Mural
Ding Dong Dumb – politically poignant

It was painted by Blu, and features a church bell used as a megaphone and a sea of people, all with a blank look in their eyes, looking up at the bell.

Ding Dong Dumb Mural by Blu
Ding Dong Dumb detail

It was made as criticism of the Catholic Church. When you look closer you’ll the words “Never Follow” were sprayed on the mural.

Ding Dong Dumb Mural - never follow
Never follow

Address: ul. Piwna 3A

Stanisław Lem Robot mural

Stanislaw Lem Mural

Science fiction author Stanisław Lem’s quote was the inspiration for this mural, painted by Filip Kużniarz.

The quote is about how we worship technology and the painting is probably the robot that will take over if we go on worshipping it…

Address: ul. Józefińska 24 , Podgórze

Krakow’s Mayan Apocalypse mural

Game Over - Maya Mural
It’s the end of the world as we know it!

Around the corner from the painting that warns us from the robots taking over, there’s another doomsday mural.

A few years ago (specifically,  on 21 December 2012), we were facing an apocalypse, according to the Mayan prophecy.

The mural with the words “Game Over?” was made the night before the world was supposed to end…

Address: ul. Józefińska 24

Book Titles Typography Project

Book Titles Typography

A typography project by art students covers the wall of a building in Podgórze and its pretty easy to miss unless you know what it means.

The art students chose to present their favourite books, using only fonts.

It’s designed as a bookshelf and though many of the titles are in Polish, you may still recognise dome.

***

Hopefully this post gave you a taste of the street art you’ll see when you visit Krakow.

Quite a few of these are legal paintings, so may stay on the walls for a while, although there’s a lot of construction going on in Krakow, so I guess some may be at risk of disappearing.

I wrote mostly about large murals, simply because they’re so beautiful and well executed, but you can also find smaller pieces of street art and graffiti when you walk around the city.

Those who love street art photography will have a great time walking around the city taking photos.

If you’d like to go on a street art tour in Krakow, Walkative Tours have a free walking tour all about street art in Krakow, led by a local guide. I joined one and found out a lot of information about the art and the background stories of the artworks and some of the artists.

Find out about more guided tours in Krakow

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Street Art in Krakow Poland
Street Art in Krakow Poland
Street Art in Krakow Poland

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