Meet the Street Artist Using Optical Illusions to Transform Buildings into Faces

Argentinian street artist Guri uses optical illusions to turn run-down buildings into his "imaginary friends."

May 5 2015, 3:00pm

Escriña Gaucho, Guri. Images courtesy the artist

Bulbous faces are plastered all over Argentina thanks to street artist Guri. His work often captures the joy of innocence and magical realism, and occasionally supports environmental movements like the fight to protect the Río Gualeguaychu. Occasionally, though, Guri finds a run-down, abandoned building and uses his art to transform it into what he calls an "imaginary friend."

"I like to go abandoned sites in diferent places, and discover hidden characters in the structure of buildings," Guri tells The Creators Project. "Then I paint it and give it life." The idea is simple, but seeing the crumbling architecture "given life" is a particularly gratifying form of street art. He's only done it twice so far because of the time and energy required to plan and paint each optical illusion, creating both 2010's Escriña Gaucho and 2014's Amigo Imimaginario in the city of San José, Entre Ríos. He explains, "When I am in the ruins, I walk around til I find a place to play within the structure. Then I sit and imagine. Sometimes painting it is hard, but I keep trying until I find the shape I'm looking for [at the right] angle. I paint a face because it's what I see: the face of my imaginary friend."

Check out more of Guri's work in the images below and on his Facebook page.

Amigo Imimaginario

Amigo Imimaginario


Just Add Water: Rain-Activated Street Art Hits Seattle

Miniature Street Art Installations Take Over London

Urban Geodes Crystallize a Global Street Art Movement

Belgian City Square Becomes The Canvas For a Street Art Illusion

Vice Channels