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San Lorenzo Street Art II: Beautiful Serrande

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 | 5 comments






All over Rome if you walk by businesses that are closed, you’ll see serrande. It’s basically a metal shutter that gets pulled down and locked at the bottom, providing extra security when people lock up for the day. Very occasionally you’ll see places that have actually decorated their serranda, but in San Lorenzo I noticed you see it much more than in any other neighborhood I’ve been to. This was a pretty cool benefit on going around Sunday afternoon, a lot of places were closed and so their artistic serrande were on display. The ones I’m showing here are just a sampling of what I saw, and you’ll find a few more on my Flickr. They ran from very obvious artwork that displays the function of the place (like the barber shop) to animals to art that is more gritty and urban itself. I won’t translate what someone spray painted on the lips of the graffiti girl (my mother reads this blog!), but as you Italians will read, it’s not very “proper”. In any case, here you’ll see we have something a bit different from yesterday. A lot of these pieces were obviously commissioned by the businesses themselves, who were savvy enough to hire street artists to use their skill in a way to further their business. Obviously not all serrande are probably painted with permission of the owner, but it seemed like most probably were.

Anyway, seeing all the cool serrande and how they gave character to the neighborhood made me wish the one on my office had something cool. Anyone want to come by and have a go? 😉

5 Comments

  1. Yes I do read your blog. The street artists have a lot of talent. I thought of the metal door in front of your office too. good idea

  2. I love the first photo most.
    It looks like a character of Japanese manga or anime.

  3. Ciao Nobu – You’re right, it does look a bit like that. I will say that Japanese anime here is very popular, as for many years most of the cartoons that Italian kids watch are imported from Japan. A lot of my friends here talk about Japanese cartoons they watched as kids, whereas for me growing up in the US it was not popular (though is now).

  4. It is all so strange and beautiful to me. I live just south of Boston, so the street art is very different here. And I've seen it so much that I don't really see it anymore.

  5. Hi Elaine – Glad you like it! Haha, I've even gotten my mom on board with some of the street art. I'm from Massachusetts myself and certainly never grew up with cool stuff like this, but in larger cities it's much more common.

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