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It is no secret that graffiti and wall murals are widespread throughout the city of Detroit. In many ways it makes sense, considering the sheer amount of abandoned buildings with flat walls that seem to span city blocks. There are also plenty of tall railroad and street overpasses with flat, vertical walls. The large, smooth walls make perfect palettes for the artists, and it shows because they have created some of the best street art in the country.

Large mural by Detroit artist Sintex

Large mural by Detroit artist Sintex

There are other forms of interesting street art that can be found throughout the city in places beyond the underpasses and building walls. The art can be found almost anywhere, on street signs, bathroom walls, busses, store windows, and plenty of other conspicuous locations including within the many large graffiti galleries scattered across Detroit. The widespread art medium is stenciling and stickers. Both formats are quick hitting, highly mobile forms of art.

The stenciled art I’ve spotted are usually one color and made of well-designed cut-outs. The cut-outs are created from various materials (paper, plastic, etc.) in many sizes and shapes, and are temporarily taped to a wall or other surface. Once attached, the artist quickly spray paints over the stencil then peels it off. What’s left is the image created by the cut-out.

Falcon near the top of a tall wall

Stenciled falcon near the top of a tall wall

In an empty electrical box, one of my favorite stenciled piece

In an empty electrical box, one of my favorite stenciled pieces

Various colors using the same stencil

Various colors using the same stencil

Simple, clean stenciled image

Simple, clean stenciled image

Stenciled lizard on a freeway overpass

Stenciled lizard on a freeway overpass

Pre-printed stickers are the quickest type of graffiti for artists and others to spread their message. They are relatively cheap to produce, and easy to carry. Applying them to any surface is fast; just peel and stick. Many are used to promote a political cause while others are used to highlight an artist’s logo, website, or unique colorful image they created in a fast, efficient way.

Poster size sticker

Large, poster size sticker

Traffic signs seem to be a popular spot for stickers

Traffic signs seem to be a popular spot for small stickers

Political sticker

Political sticker

Sticker on Man in the City sculpture

Sticker on a Man in the City sculpture

Quirky black and white stickers on a fence post

Quirky logo stickers on a fence post

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