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July 15, 2011

The Mural Project: San Francisco's Balmy Alley

Oscar Romero by Juana Alicia

The Mission in San Francisco is arguably one of the city’s most vibrant neighborhoods, its narrow sidewalks densely populated with taco joints, head shops, dive bars, and street vendors cooking bacon-wrapped hot dogs on makeshift grills propped next to a station wagon. Even the alleyways compete for your attention—and none more so than Balmy, a block-long stretch off 24th Street. Mural painting has a decades-long history in the Mission, and Balmy boasts some of the city’s best urban art, with pieces that range from classical visages of the Virgin Mary to contemporary pieces that address the ‘hood’s struggles to retain its identity in the face of burgeoning gentrification. Here's a preview of just a few of the sights in Balmy Alley.'s San Francisco Travel Guide

Balmy-Alley-6 Balmy-Alley-5
La Virgencita by Marta Ayaia             Viera by Garth Tomkpins

Detail of Desaparecidos Peru No Olvidados by Carlos Matriz

Victorion: El Defensor de Mission by Sirron Norris

Detail from Victorion: El Defensor de Mission.
The dialog balloon reads: "Preston, when are we building those condos?"

Balmy Alley is located at 50 Balmy Street in San Francisco’s Mission neighborhood, parallal to Treat Avenue and Harrison Street, between 24th and 25th streets. The Precita Eyes Mural Arts and Visitors Center offers walking tour of the Mission murals twice daily, Saturdays and Sundays.

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Related Topics: Travel Photography · US Travel


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