Street Art: More Than Just Drawings On The Wall

August 1, 2013

I’ve always been fascinated by the street art I see around Minneapolis.

Over the years, in cities around the world, artists such as Banksy, Shepard Fairey and Twin Cities artist Hottea have helped street art become more popular and respected in the art community.


Traditional graffiti and stencil graffiti are probably the most well-known forms of street art. Three of my favorite forms are wheatpasting, mosaics and 3-D chalk art.

As amazing as I find this art, many people have issues with it. They complain that street art is often illegal and that many pieces promote an ulterior, political agenda.

But street art doesn’t have to be a crime. Nor does it have to be strident or political. In fact, street art can be a great marketing tool.

The great thing about commissioning art, legally, on the side of a building or on the street is that the message will elicit a strong reaction. Not all reactions will be the same, but people will take notice, remembering what they saw and why it was there.

One great example of employing a street artist for marketing purposes is Coca-Cola’s “Let’s Go Crazy” campaign, which inspires people to go crazy and do good for others. One of the segments featured Jeff Waldman, who put up swings all over San Francisco to encourage people to have fun. [Coca-Cola is a Fast Horse client, but we didn’t work on the “Let’s Go Crazy” campaign.]

Here’s a quick look:

It’s easy to see in this video how people had such a strong, positive reaction. I mean, c’mon, there is no way you didn’t smile.

This type of promotion can be a powerful way to get a message across to people about a brand or product. In this case, both Jeff and Coke stayed true to their missions of making people happy.

As street art continues to become more popular, let’s hope that marketing campaigns follow the trend.