Cuban street artists turns city walls into gallery

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A a mural artist in Havana is brightening the city streets, turning neighborhoods into outdoor art galleries. CCTV America’s Michael Voss reports from Havana.

Cuban street artists turns city walls into gallery

Cuban street artists turns city walls into gallery

A a mural artist in Havana is brightening the city streets, turning neighborhoods into outdoor art galleries. CCTV America's Michael Voss reports from Havana. Maisel Lopez is a portrait artist. But he doesn't work on canvas. Instead, he has spent the past year painting giant murals on walls around his neighborhood of Playa in Havana.

Maisel Lopez is a portrait artist. But he doesn’t work on canvas. Instead, he has spent the past year painting giant murals on walls around his neighborhood of Playa in Havana.

“As an artist, I prefer mural painting, I love it, and I think it has a closer relation to the public. Exhibitions in galleries are not the same. People can see the artwork here and interact with it,” Lopez said.

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Passersby stop and watch as his portraits take shape. While the woman whose wall he is painting brings him lunch every day.

Lopez paints portraits of children from his neighborhood. So far, he has completed 15 different murals, all with the blessing of the local authorities.

“I’m interested in children because I think that they are important for the construction and development of society. They are the future. The children all come from my community. After I get permission from their parents, I take photos of the kids and later turn them into the murals,” Lopez said.

Lopez isn’t paid for his murals. He does it for free, funding them through whatever other artworks he can sell. Each takes about a month from planning to completion.