by Cyrus Grant
If we’re talking street art, there probably aren’t many places better than the City of Angels. Los Angeles might be known for its beaches, sunny weather, and movie stars, but if you know where to look, the walls around the city can beat even the fanciest of art exhibits
Luckily, we’ve got our eyes and ears to the streets, so we’ve put together a little list of where to find the best graffiti art in Los Angeles. You might want to bookmark it though, the wall art at each location often changes so you never know what you’ll see each time you visit.
Arts District – DTLA
The Arts District has good art? Go figure. Starting the list in one of LA’s most prominent artistic areas, The Arts District is full of world-class wall art, and the best part, admission is free (because…you know, it’s just throughout the streets).
The Container Yard – 800 E 4th St., Los Angeles, CA 90013
If you’re trying to see the most wall art in the smallest amount of time, The Container Yard is the place to go. Originally a Japanese mochi factory, The Container Yard is now an open space for local artists to create and collaborate, resulting in what has essentially turned into a campus of wall art. While it might not be accessible to the random graffiti artist in the way some walls around the city are, the art is top-notch and done by legit street artists from around the city and beyond.
Art Share LA – 801 E 4th Pl., Los Angeles, CA 90013
Not only is Art Share LA a cool place to see constantly changing wall art, but it’s also a badass affordable housing complex for artists. Thanks to this, there’s always a fresh spin on whatever art decorates the wall around the Art Share building. If you end up in the area, we also recommend taking a little walk down S. Hewit St. (on the side of Art Share LA) for some bonus graffiti wall art.
701 E 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90013
In May 2016, the eastern wall of the Neptune building became home to “Bloom” by artist Hueman, replacing a long-loved painting called “Cream of the Crop” by artists DABSMYLA. While some locals were pissed to see a new painting take over the wall, “Bloom” has become a community staple, as it pays tribute to community activist Joel Bloom.
A bonus to this location is that right around the corner on E 4th Pl., you have a collection of walls that often see new, super rad pieces pop up.
Colossal Media – 418 Molino St., Los Angeles, CA 90013
Okay so this one might seem like a corporate-y option, but bear with us. Yes, Colossal Media is an advertising company. Yes, that feels like it goes against the authenticity of street art. But they do things a bit differently. They specialize in finding iconic street artists to create hand-painted outdoor murals, rather than just plastering some crap on a billboard. Honestly, they seem pretty cool.
All that aside, their office location in LA has some sweet wall art. Almost like a “Where’s Waldo?” of pop culture and iconic characters, there’s a whole lot to look at. Spanning three walls and chock-full of fun little details, trust us when we say you gotta check it out.
901 E 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90013
Tucked down a one-way alley to the right of the Hauser & Wirth building (an art gallery that moved into the long-abandoned flour mill), some of the graffiti in and around this building has been there for years, and was actually kept in place and refurbished by the art gallery that currently occupies the space.
Okay, so you could probably find a whole book on street art in the Arts District, but it isn’t the only place to find cool graffiti. The next spots on our list can be found around the sandy beaches of West Side Los Angeles.
Venice Art Walls – 1800 Ocean Front Walk, Venice, California 90291
While the Arts District is full of professional-level street art, the Venice Art Walls are a more, shall we say, traditional form of graffiti. Open to anyone on the weekends, artists of all levels can show up and let the spraypaint fly. Not only does this create a pretty authentic feel to all the graffiti, but it also is constantly changing, so you never know what you might get to see.
MakeMake Entertainment – 2308 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90404
If you find yourself in Santa Monica looking for a variety of street art, look no further than the MakeMake Entertainment building. Every inch of this building is covered in different styles of graffiti, meaning you’ll definitely want to give it a full 360-degree tour.
Electric and Santa Clara Ave., Venice, CA 90291
Walk around enough of Venice and you’ll see plenty of graffiti, but if you’re looking for some of Venice’s most popular street art pieces, you’ll want to head towards Abbot Kinney. Starting in the back alley on Electric Avenue and cutting through Santa Clara Avenue towards Abbot Kinney, this little side street is home to some popular walls for high-tier graffiti. Plus, there’s a bunch of great food and shopping around there if you’re all done with your LA graffiti tour.
It’s no secret that you can find graffiti on almost any wall in a big city like Los Angeles, but we wanted to share some special spots for those of you that appreciate some next-level shit. So, as always, grab your favorite Tough Mama product, spark up (or drink up), and hit the streets to see the best graffiti in town.
Any spots we missed? Let us know in the comments down below!