How San Juan’s art scene is reinvigorating the city

[Many thanks to Peter Jordens for bringing this item to our attention.] Caroline Lascom describes San Juan’s art scene for Lonely Planet:

Over the last decade, established and emerging artists have channeled Puerto Rico’s diverse cultural influences and tropical landscapes to change the face of San Juan.

Bold murals have enlivened the once derelict buildings of the Santurce district, where art projects spring up at every turn. Museum curators have embraced new roles as both influential connectors and community activists, while private galleries are nurturing an exciting new generation of Puerto Rican artists and propelling them onto the international stage. 

Since there’s no better time than now to check out San Juan’s burgeoning art scene, here’s our list of the best places to see art in the capital city. 

Explore bold murals in Santurce neighborhood 

In the heart of San Juan, the artsy Santurce neighborhood is the cradle of Puerto Rico’s street-art movement. In the early 2000s, artists fleeing escalating rents in Old San Juan converged on the area, with tech businesses, gourmet restaurants and contemporary-art museums quickly following suit. Today, Santurce is one of the Caribbean’s most vibrant artistic communities. 

The movement Santurce Es Ley (Santurce is Law) has its origins as a spontaneous art gathering that took place on Calle Cerra, the epicenter of the neighborhood’s renaissance. Over the last decade, the event evolved into a world-renowned three-day art festival, now held annually in March. 

Faithful to the Caribbean experience, most of Santurce’s street art celebrates Puerto Rico’s landscape and people, with many works also underscoring sociopolitical or historic themes. The most photographed murals are by celebrated artists Defy, La Pandilla and Pun18. 

[Shown above: San Juan’s flourishing art scene showcases Puerto Rico’s diverse cultural landscape © Discover Puerto Rico.]

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