Street Art Meant To Inspire

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Our cameras roll as graffiti goes up in a Bywater park, but this rendering is done legally. Vanessa Bolano has the story.

Artist Paul Santoleri is in town visiting, but he’s leaving his mark in Bywater.

“Beautiful little neighborhood. Kind of reminds me of my neighborhood,” says Santoleri.

Sanoleri is from Philadelphia. He’s been painting his entire life and for the next few months his artwork will be featured at the Foundation Gallery in the Warehouse District.

“That work is work that I made in another place and brought here, and this is work that I make specifically for this place,” explains Santoleri, “I like working large because you’re working with your arms instead of your wrists, and I like the impact that it has. It’s kind of like a dialogue with the world in a different way.”

Santoleri’s Bywater mural is 43 feet long by 8 feet high and it’s coated with about 25 cans worth of spray paint. It’s Paul’s somewhat permanent gift to New Orleans.

“They become part of a backdrop for a community. It’s just like the first step in revitalization. This was all covered with nasty words before I got here and a little bit of love just usually spreads out.”

You can see more of Santoleri’s work at the Foundation Gallery on Julia Street. His artwork will be featured there through January.