Locals and visitors alike can be found exploring the city’s labyrinth of laneways, streets, facades and venues appreciating the many forms of contemporary urban art throughout the city and out to surrounding precincts such as St Kilda, Fitzroy, Collingwood and Brunswick.
Street art contributes significantly to Melbourne’s vibrant urban environment, providing a constantly changing tapestry for passers-by to admire. The art form is supported by city councils, residents and businesses alike, making street art an integral part of the Melbourne experience.
A visitor need only follow the stencil art, paste ups and murals adorning the walls around town, to find all the best places to stay, drink, dine and visit in Melbourne.
Top 5 Best Street Art Laneways
Hosier and Rutledge – two of the city’s original street art laneways that now have ever-changing artworks on the walls from emerging artists to beginners on the scene. Very popular for visitors who come to see the huge Adnate mural of an indigenous child.
- AC/DC and Duckboard Place – a horseshoe shaped outdoor art gallery with artworks inspired by the top-class dining (Tonka, Lee Ho Fook, Pastuso) found here as well as one of Melbourne’s music institutions, Cherry Bar. Currently sporting a new Mike Makatron mural.
- Union Lane – just off Bourke Street mall this narrow passage is great for curious visitors who will often see artists with their spray cans putting up new artworks.
- Myers Place – a stunning new piece by the prolific Makatron creates an urban jungle at the top end of Bourke Street.
- Croft Alley – a zig and a zag down this hidden away narrow laneway in the heart of Chinatown delivers an evolving selection of colourful art but some of the more established artists.
Top 5 Street Art Bars
- Easeys– this bar and restaurant in Fitzroy is covered from top to bottom in street art. The architects consulted with a number of local street artists to design the interior and exterior of this 5-leveled venue that features a train carriage on the rooftop.
- Arlechin – Guy Grossi’s new laneway leading to a cool new late-night bar Arlechin has a selection of great new pieces to admire while looking out of the box seat window at the front.
- Section 8 – is a drinking venue that began its life as two shipping containers in a car park and is now a popular street-art themed laneway bar.
- Ferdydurke – in Tattersall Lane with a huge piece by renowned artist, Heesco, guests follow stencil art up the staircase to the entry of this funky cocktail bar.
- Croft Institute – is a much loved drinking venue with a long, colourful laneway notorious for its ever changing facade of murals, that leads to the door.
Top 5 street art restaurants
- Chin Chin – has fully incorporated the city’s love for art into its dining experience combining stencil art, murals, light, outdoor projections and sound – it’s laneway, also has an ode to some of the best chefs in the world.
- Attica – a friendship between Australia’s top chef Ben Shewry and artist Heesco as resulted in the outdoor wall of the revered restaurant covered in a Heesco mural.
- Transformer – the entire façade of this vegetarian restaurant in Fitzroy is covered street art designed by New York artist Never Satisfied, curated by Dean Sunshine.
- Cookie – is a much-loved dining, drinking and dancing institution which has a huge black, grey and white mural.
- Movida – being immersed in Hosier Lane (Melbourne’s street-art heart) this restaurant has an ever-changing face that is always exciting, colourful and inspiring.
Melbourne Street Art Tours – offer tour led by some of Melbourne’s best street artists, giving participants an insider’s overview of the Melbourne underground street art scene. The tour finishes up with a drink amongst artists working in the Blender Studios new home in Melbourne’s Docklands.
Wall To Wall Street Art Festival – is Victoria’s first regional street art festival that runs run annually every March. The town of Benalla, located in the North East of Melbourne, was selected to host the festival and a provided a forward thinking approach to rejuvenating the regional town. The town is now home to painted murals up to 3 stories high using scissor lifts, cherry pickers and scaffold to scale the buildings to create their modern masterpieces.
Rose Street Market – is a popular artists market where street art designs on the walls of the courtyard change regularly. The surrounding streets and the cafes are also covered in colourful street art from local and international artists.
InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto – is a unique heritage listed hotel, built over a genuine cobblestone laneway, giving guests the opportunity to sleep amongst Melbourne’s street art with a 40m long mural painted by local street artists from The Blender Studios. It can be viewed from the event space, The Laneway Rooms on the lower ground floor.
Adelphi Hotel – located next to the city’s heart of street art, Hosier Lane, this hotel pays homage to this artistic style throughout its rooms. As one of the world’s first dessert hotels, it proudly displays ‘Lucy’; a piece by local street artist Barry Drinan which reflects both the edgy and original characteristics of the hotel and its surrounds.
Crown Melbourne – has numerous pieces of street art in its properties, the most significant one by artist Doyle from Blender Studios who was commissioned to paint a colourful mural under the Kings Bridge that runs along Crown’s riverside walk, along the Yarra River. Called ‘The Wall’ it is a critique on Australian contemporary culture.
Crown Metropol – a vibrant hotel part of the Crown suite with an infinity pool overlooking the city. The hotel features a huge lady-bird inspired piece at its entrance, created by local artist Mike Maka.
Art Series: The Cullen – an inner south boutique hotel that is part of the art series with individual rooms painted by artists such as DFace, Swoon, Blak Le Rat and ELK to name a few.
Ovolo Laneways – a boutique hotel designed and inspired by the hidden laneways and street art that Melbourne is known for in the heart of the city.
Everfresh Studio – is an explosive hub of creation and activity, inconspicuously located in Melbourne’s inner-city suburb of Collingwood. Behind an unmarked factory door, Everfresh artists conceive, develop and collaborate to produce their now internationally renowned work for the streets, as well as fine art for exhibition in galleries and to furnish the art market’s growing appetite for street art.
Juddy Roller – is an award-winning street art and graffiti management company. Director Shaun Hossack curates exhibitions and events, large scale mural projects and festivals, and maintains an international creative network of street artists. Situated in ‘Juddy Roller Lane’ visitors can explore the laneway and view the ever changing murals and artworks that activate the area as well as visiting Juddy Roller Studio.
Blender Studios – founded by artist Adrian Doyle, is a studio with 16 resident artists and many alumni’s who have shaped the face of Melbourne’s art culture, since it opened in 2002. The Studios offer visitors multiple experiences including the Melbourne Street Art Tours (Australia’s only street art tour run by artists), artist run workshops. The studio has recently set up its new home in Melbourne’s Docklands area, Harbour Town, and with it, new artworks appearing in the precinct bringing a new energy to this part of town.
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