Baladk Festival Brings Colour Back to Amman

Transforming the city into an open-air gallery

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Amman’s art scene is burgeoning, and Baladk Festival is making sure street art gets its rightful place in the newfound art-hub. Held every year, the six-day event brings together local and international artists to literally cover the city in colour.

After COVID-19 related postponement earlier this year, the festival has returned for its eighth edition, dubbed ‘Art is Environment and Environment is Art.’

Backed by Amman’s Al Balad Theatre, the initiative first began in 2013, when a group of friends and volunteers at the multi-purpose performing arts space came together to push forward everything from live art, murals, and grafitti.

 

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“IMAGINE to believe in yourself and follow your dreams, children of Hashmi Shamali. Imagine to step beyond limitations and try something new, something your might be afraid of right now. Imagine to become a painter instead of an engineer, little Bader; to work as a doctor or pilot, little Shaheed although, no: because! you are a woman. May the silent smile and the special energy of this beautiful woman Christina Laube and Mehrdad Zaeri created give You strength in the next years. May the peace birds make your thoughts fly to places you are dreaming of now. May the encouraging example of a couple working together in your neighbourhood for five days make you realize that women and men are created equal, can be partners in private and professional life. Thanks to Sourati for transforming this desert colored wall into a mural called IMAGINE in five days, for painting in heat, dust, petroleum odour of the crane.” – Annette Wagner Foto: Annette Wagner #BaladkProject #Baladk2019 #baladk #sourati @mehrdad_zaeri & Christina Laube @stadtwandkunst @montanacans #germany #mannheim @alte_feuerwache_mannheim

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The Festival is an important gathering of the global artistic community in Amman – Jordan and Jordanian artists. It provides a platform for emerging and established artists to connect, learn and create,” reads their website.  

For its past seven editions, Baladk has featured the work of  both local and international artists, covering the old, beige walls of Amman with colossal, ultra-vibrant murals and graffiti.

 

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Bernard the umbrella 2.0 #baladkproject

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The festival has previously featured the work of Nike-collaborator Dina Saadi, whose vibrant work that depicts the beauty in everyday life and natural elements has been seen on walls across the globe, from New York City to Peru. Jordanian Graffiti artist Suhaib Attar, too. Attar will also be returning to take part in this year’s edition, alongside a slew of local artists.

Murals around the city will be painted by the likes of Chaf, who is known to merge his delicate calligraphy with bold and graphic graffiti and Yazan Mesmar, who perfectly touched this theme.

 

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“The Cube is an imitation of life itself – or even an improvement on life.” Graffiti writer and artist @siner_19 produced this wonderful piece in Hashmi – Amman as part of #Baladk this year, his reflections towards the environment, waste and our practices were perceived as puzzles, that life around us reacts as an imitation to what we practice in our daily life. أنتج كاتب الجرافيتي والفنان “سينر” هذه الجدارية الرائعة في الهاشمي – عمان كجزء من #بلدك هذا العام ، واعتبرت انعكاساته تجاه البيئة والهدر وممارساتنا بمثابة ألغاز، وأن الحياة من حولنا تتفاعل لممارساتنا في حياتنا اليومية. Location of the mural: موقع الجدارية: Ahmad sudqi al jundi street. Hashmi al shamali

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This year, the festival’s organizers announced that they will also be holding a two-day event comprised of presentations, featured talks and workshops surrounding the themes of street art culture and the environment. And as a champion of Jordan’s creative community and environmental issues, her Majesty Queen Rania has been a big supporter of this year’s edition. The queen took to her Instagram to share her adventure touring murals across the city last week.

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