This hour-long self-guided street art walking tour introduces you to one of Paris’s rarely-explored neighborhoods, pointing out some of the extra-sized urban artworks adorning the quartier along the way.
With the inauguration of the Boulevard Paris 13 Project in June 2019, the 13th Arrondissement officially became an Open-Air Street Art Museum – follow this Paris walking itinerary and you’ll quickly see why.
The urban art initiative aims to add another 50 frescoes within the next year, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for new works which will be popping up all the time!
For now though, admire the existing artworks by starting at the Place d’Italie and heading down the Boulevard Vincent Auriol. After two blocks, you’ll spot your first eye-catching piece, a calligraphy-covered building by Crypt at N°171, just next to Hownosm’s “Sun Daze” and Hush’s untitled work.
Keep walking along the wide boulevard and you’ll soon pass by D*Face’s all-blue “Turncoat” before crossing a cat -“Le Chat” by C215 to be exact – and the Rue Nationale.
Behind the friendly feline, you’ll see possibly the Frenchiest fresque in the city – “Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité” painted by famous American artist Obey, aka Shepard Fairey – the same artist behind Barack Obama’s iconic “Hope” poster. The bleu, blanc, rouge artwork shows the personification of the French Republic, Marianne, surrounded by the national slogan. Unfortunately, you can’t get a great view from down on the street, but don’t worry, you’ll get a chance to see it better at the end of the stroll.
Continue down the Champs-Elysées of street art until you spot a flamingo on a bright yellow wall. Take a minute to appreciate the humor of this piece by Southern artist Maye, then turn right just after the mural. Duck down Rue Jeanne d’Arc to see two more of Shepard Fairey’s works (at N°60 and 93), then turn around and return to the Boulevard Vincent Auriol.
A block farther down the boulevard, you’ll see three more magical murals. After admiring the artworks, turn left and cross under the metro tracks, continuing one block more to 46 Boulevard Vincent Auriol to spot Invader’s biggest artwork, Dr. House – yes, you read that right! Here, on the wall of a hospital, the famous Parisian street artist created one of his signature mosaics in the form of TV’s Dr. House!
As your self-guided walking tour comes to a close, make your way back up the opposite side of the Boulevard Vincent Auriol. Peak your head around the corner at Rue Jenner to see a mural by David de la Mano, then continue on the boulevard until you once again reach Rue Jeanne d’Arc. Turn the corner and you’ll immediately see two colorful creations, with Globe Trotteur’s child-centric mural playing with angles and changing as you approach it.
Pass straight through the Square Gustave Mesurer on your left and be sure to look up before exiting the little park at the Place Pinel to see D*Face’s “Love Won’t Tear Us Apart.” On your way to the Nationale metro station, you’ll get another glimpse of Obey’s “Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité” between the trees and above the train tracks, but go hop on the metro to get an even better view.