Rue du Général Leclerc
How about we take a step off the beaten track when it comes to murals? No more gardens or trompe l’œil farms. In Sainté (Saint-Étienne to you), we have Ella and Pitr's giants. These are not there just to cover something up or as decoration, they're meant to have meaning. Modular, Urban, Reactive (MUR). Those 3 words sum up the work of artists Ella and Pitr, who've been spreading their brand of insolence and poetic charm around the city since 2007. 2 Saint-Étienne natives whose paint pots and souls have come together to create a unique style. Once you get over the initial shock (they are pretty imposing, our little giants), you'll find you can't get enough of them. You'll end up looking out for them on every street corner. Unusual characters, outsize dimensions, colours galore and always a message. A real one. That's the secret of their appeal. And it works. With their funny faces and disjointed limbs (maybe they should hold back on the osteopathy), the giants are at home here. Sometimes lying down, sometimes standing, asleep or just looking thoughtful, no two are the same and yet they are always recognisable. And as I know you're dying to discover their little faces (put like that, they sound less overawing), so I'll give you a tip.
Take a walk down Rue Général Leclerc. That's where you'll find the funny toothbrush: la brosse à dent qui fait rire. An off-the-wall work and an idea that could have a future. And while we're in the cosmetics department (the giant is rather coquettish...), here's a mural extolling the virtues of a cream that softens walls. It always draws a smile and makes you want to touch it. You even end up thinking it would be cool if it actually existed. Mission accomplished: it succeeded in giving you something to think about!
In short, whether you are well-versed in art or a novice, Ella and Pitr's style will speak to you. In the heart of a city focused on innovation and modernity, it's the least you could ask for. These are not so much murals as XXL-sized slices of life. They're original and caustic. We're on board. We love 'em.
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