Shepard Fairey's Lower East Side: Stencils, Murals & Street Art

New York City

  • Shepard Fairey's Blondie CBGB mural.
  • "We Own the Future" up close. Photo: Rey Rosa.
  • The mural above 161 Bowery.
  • Head on into the former bank that is Totokaelo.
  • Examine the tilework and classic windows at Totokaelo. Photo: Renz Ofiaza.
  • Shepard Fairey and an associate apply a stencil to the wall. Photo: Lenny Collado.
  • James Goldcrown's "Love Wall"
  • “Lift You Higher” by Lakwena Maciver.
  • Keith Haring painting the first Bowery Mural in 1982. Photo: Martha Cooper.
  • Joey Ramone mural painted in 2015 by John “Crash” Matos and Solus.
  • The street art opposite the CBGB mural.

45 minutes
0.7 mi
Guided by Alexis
Alexis Johnson


Shepard Fairey is arguably the most recognized street artist in the world, having created the iconic "Hope" portrait of former President Barack Obama. Come explore Shepard Fairey's haunts on the Lower East Side where punk rock, grit and graffiti ruled the street. While the neighborhood slowly gentrifies, there are still pockets of street cred and art. Visit three iconic Fairey murals and check out the most important street art canvases of the LES.

About Your Guide

If you need a trivia-night ringer for pop culture, British rock bands or NHL hockey, I am your girl. Ad agency designer by day, barre instructor by night, urban forager on weekends. New York is my city - I have a good handle on what's worth seeing.

Go on this Sidewalk

Guide Points

  1. "We Own The Future" Mural

    At 37 feet x 27 ft, the _We Own The Future_ mural commands your attention. The 2014 mural above 161 Bowery features an amalgamation of a do…

  2. Totokaelo

    We find ourselves at the former Germania Bank built in 1898. As you can tell, the exterior has received decades worth of graffiti as the bu…

  3. 4 Rivington St

    Our second Shepard Fairey mural can be found on the southern side of Rivington. Painted in 2011, the giant work includes a lotus flower, cr…

  4. Freeman Alley

    Only local foodies and street art enthusiasts know of Freeman Alley. At the end of the dead-end passage is the critically-acclaimed Freeman…

  5. New Museum

    It's not exactly the end of our tour, but we will come to the gift shop anyway. There are plenty of books that document the street art from…

  6. The Bowery Wall Mural

    The Bowery Wall Mural is one of the most hallowed street art canvases in the world.

  7. CBGB Mural at Saxon + Parole

    This is the newest Shepard Fairey addition to the neighborhood, painted in August 2017. It features late 70s punk star Debbie Harry of Blon…

Sidewalk Reviews

  1. 4 Reviews

    1. Henrik Landgren

    Jul 8, 2018

    1. Anonymous

    I had a wonderful time! Thank you so much Alexis

    May 4, 2018

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