Just outside of the historic walled city of Cartagena, the area that has been most pristinely upkept and beautiful for tourists, is the neighborhood called Getsemani (with an “h” sound at the beginning). Getsemani these days is the neighborhood where budget tourists stay. One thing that I personally love about Getsemani is that native Cartagena residents still actually live there. In the old walled city, most anyone that lives there permanently is an outsider who can afford the high cost. The mix between locals and travelers makes Getsemani have a really cool vibe. It’s crawling with hip hostels, cool restaurants that are open late, a few bars, and lots and lots of street art.
When we were there last week, we spent a good chunk of time wandering around this neighborhood. I, of course, loved the street art. Check out some of what I saw. Also, for another great write-up on street art in Colombia, read this article about a Bogotá graffiti tour that some of my fellow Peace Corps Volunteers took back in March.
The image at the top of this post is taken from the entrance to the touristic part of Cartagena, which includes the historic walled city and Getsemani; the painting is on the Getsemani side. This picture doesn’t capture how striking the painting is high above the buildings.
Top left: “I like Colombia”
Top right: A painting of a Cartagenera by artist DEXS
Bottom left: a cat woman
Bottom right: Valentina is actually the name of a novel by a young author named Daniel Franco, and this was actually a really small sticker (or maybe a paper wheatpasted to the wall). The text reads something like
“Suddenly I was in what seemed to be my place in the world:
Standing, alone, in the middle of a sea of people but alone”
Top: A huge painting of a crow. There’s a legend from the area about a colorful bird that saved a town from burning by walking into the fire and carrying them out. He lived, but remained charred and black. Painted by artist Yurika
Bottom left: 24 Faces by Felix Morelo
Bottom right: Apparently sponsored by Corporación Desarrollo y Paz (Corporation Development and Peace), it says “Looking for love? In your family it is the best”
Of course, this wasn’t all of the street art in Getsemani. Fortunately, it also wasn’t my last visit to Cartagena. Stay tuned for more pictures in the future!