Fanzara: Graffiti everywhere
A small village in Spain with the most amazing story behind. To start with, embracing graffiti and street art has saved it from disappearing …
Never heard of Fanzara? – You´re not the only one. Tourists mostly end up heading to the same places and the best (and most authentic) stories are always hidden. I´d say 90% of the Spanish people won’t be able to point out this little village on the map. By the way, it is located in the Province of Castellon/Valencian Community and I´ve recently included it to my list of The Most Colorful Villages in Spain and Top 10 Places to Visit in The Province of Castellon. But what makes Fanzara special?!
Home to more or less 300 people, Fanzara was about to make it to the list of “Spain’s dying villages” until its streets were converted to an open-air Museum. Around 15 graffiti artists were invited by the young generation of locals to transform the village. Thanks to their amazing works the small village gained its unique identity and become an ultimate stop for the art lovers of the region.
The citizens of Fanzara are the nicest and friendliest people ever. Since it is a tiny village where everyone knows everyone, the locals immediately notice you´re “not from here” and try to assist you in every possible way. In my experience, a local woman simply approached me while I was taking pictures and gave me some useful tips on what not to miss.
Is Graffiti an Art?
It´s no secret graffiti is mostly officially prohibited everywhere in the world and many people just don´t understand this form of art or don´t see it as an art at all. And I agree with those who say the word “hi” on the wall is most likely not an art, but at the same time, Fanfara´s graffitis are definitely artworks. As well as those at the East Side Gallery in Berlin and many others worldwide.
There tends to be a gap between young and old generations: it might be hard to explain to your grandmother this particular modern art piece is beautiful (I often don´t quite get some of them myself). So, can you imagine the old local lady explaining to you the meaning behind the certain graffiti work?! – Only in Fanzara.
I find it so inspiring: the way the older and more conservative locals in Fanzara supported the younger generations with this (not very usual) initiative, which ended up transforming the old and ruined city streets into an open-air gallery.
Just in a few weeks, a dying village turned into a cultural triumph. Fanzara ended up being different and unique.
Graffiti, Art, and Future
Fanzara keeps attracting more and more art lovers every day. Its murals are supposed to be painted over regularly, so they would echo the story of the village. I absolutely loved my day there and happy to share the story of Fanzara with people across the globe …who wouldn’t agree after all that art is eternal.
READ MORE: THE MOST COLORFUL VILLAGES IN SPAIN