Natacha Antão Moutinho
Quinta do Mocho, Loures, Lisboa
Paulo Vilas Boas
All this work is developed around the study and reflection about street art as a strategy and instrument of urban public spaces rehabilitation, more specifically spaces with physical, social and economic problems. I also try to bring forward and clarify the potentialities of this artistic expression, as well as the benefits that its application offers both to these spaces and to those who frequent and use them.
The public space has a very important position in the life of the population, and as such, its degradation or abandonment can have consequences on the function and experience of the city.
It's these spaces and the relations that they provide, that allow a balanced and harmonious development of a city, so there must be special attention upon them. With this in mind, actions such as urban rehabilitation, which seek to recover and improve these spaces, not only physically but also economically and socially, are increasingly a necessity and a solution to a lot of the contemporaneity problems. The street art as a transformation tool of the image, identity and visual quality of the public space, has been used in many national and international urban rehabilitation projects. These situations raise many questions such as the importance of the aesthetics and the imagery as a rehabilitation factor, and how these physical and material factors contribute to an improvement at the socioeconomic level of the urban daily life It was seen in Quinta do Mocho, an example of this type of initiative, seeking a positive change in the social and physical conditions that are offered to the residents. It was in this residential area, socially excluded and in poor physical conditions, that street art was used as a form of social inclusion, public space qualification and image and identity renovation of the neighborhood. In this research, this case serves as a way of exemplifying and proof the benefits and results that this alternative method of urban rehabilitation can provide to the most fragile communities.The street art emerges as a physical transformation that values and enriches with color, life, and creativity, the space, often degraded and monotonous. This art can potentiate in spaces like Quinta do Mocho social housing, a “metamorphosis” that was experienced by the same, which once was associated to vandalism and now is considered one of the most remarkable artistic movements of the 21st century.