The Lou Messugo Blog - life in the south of France from a British/Australian TCK's perspective, bringing you French culture, travel on the Côte d'Azur and beyond, expat issues and a little bit of je ne sais quoi all mixed up with a hefty dose of photography.

Cannes Cinema Street Art

Today I thought I'd take you on a tour of Cannes and share with you a side of the famous Riviera resort that often goes unnoticed.  Cannes, synonymous with cinema, has a wonderful collection of wall murals - street art - all over the town, celebrating its relationship with the "7th Art". Look up and you'll find paintings of iconic moments and people in cinema's history, depiciting famous French and international stars.  Look out for Marilyn Monroe, James Bond, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Batman, Mickey Mouse, Alain Delon, James Dean, R2D2, Starsky and Hutch, Jacques Tati, Lightning McQueen and many more. 

      Cannes wall painting lenvers du decor

In 2002 the Cannes town council started decorating the sides of buildings with film-related themes in an effort to enhance the appearance of various neighbourhoods.  The first four giant wall paintings were inaugurated in 2004 and since then a further 11 have been added.  Owing to the recent (and on-going) renovation of the train station, two have unfortunately been destroyed, leaving a total today of 13 magnificent pieces of art.

      Cannes wall painting Tati

I recently had a good old friend visiting for the 3rd time from Australia.  We'd visited plenty of places together the previous two times so inspired by the imminent opening of the film festival, and the fact that she hadn't been to Cannes before, we armed ourselves with a map and set out to find the paintings.   A sort of "Visit Cannes with a difference Tour". Living near by I've been to Cannes many times, including to the Festival itself twice (which you can read about here), but I'd only ever noticed a couple of the decorated walls. Many of them are quite hidden and reasonably hard to find, and looking for them takes you to some lesser-known parts of the city, away from the crowds.  We didn't manage to see them all in the end, as we ran out of time to get to the more distant ones, but we found and enjoyed 10 out of 13.

      Cannes wall painting cars in cinema

In the photo above you can see my friend taking a photo of "Cannes Movie Car Museum".  If you look carefully you can also see "Cinema Kisses" in the distance.  Some paintings are grouped close together. Others are spread far and wide. 

      cinema wall Cannes

The painting above celebrates 100 years of cinema, with lights, camera, action...Look closely and you can spot Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Charlie Chaplin, Batman, Superman, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Gérard Depardieu, Jessica Rabbit, C-3P0 and R2D2, Laurel and Hardy, Lauren Bacall, Humphrey Bogart, Robert Redford, Harold Lloyd, Mickey and Minnie Mouse.  I can't name them all, who else can you see?

      Cannes wall painting trompe loeil

The scene above is simply titled "Trompe l'oeil", referring to cinema being an illusion.  What you see doesn't actually exist, there's no balcony, no windows, no room with a view.

      Cannes cinema wall Gérard Philipe

Some of the paintings seem to be in odd places, not easily accessible, such as this one of French actor Gérard Philipe in the film Fanfan la Tulipe (above) and this one (below, slightly easier to photograph) of classic comic Buster Keaton.

              Cannes cinema wall Keaton

One of my favourite murals depicts Jacques Tati outside the "Hôtel de la Plage".  It would be best seen and appreciated from within a little park opposite the facade, but unfortunately the park was locked, making photography tricky, but not impossible.

      Cannes cinema wall painting Tati

The immortal goddess of cinema, Marilyn Monroe, graces the side of a building easily seen from the flyover road above the train station.  I've gazed into her eyes many times while stuck in traffic! It's a perfect welcome to Cannes.

              Cannes wall Marilyn Monroe

Another fabulous black and white wall illustrates some of the most famous kisses in cinematic history. Gabin - Morgan, Cary Grant - Ingrid Bergman, DiCaprio - Winslet, Clark Gable - Vivien Leigh, Bogart - Bacall and Marcello Mastroianni - Anita Ekberg all star on the side of a block of flats in a residential area north of the Croisette.  

      Cannes wall painting kisses

Just around the corner, in an unassuming parking lot you'll find a "museum" of movie cars.  Starsky and Hutch, Mad Max, James Bond, Bonnie and Clyde, Taxi Driver, Mr Bean, Cars, Ghost Busters and Batman are all parked along side more modern day vehicles.

      Cannes wall painting Ghostbusters

The last two paintings on our movie tour are called "The 7th Art" which represents all the cinemas in Cannes and "L'envers du décor" showing what goes on behind the scene.  It pays homage to all the people who work behind the camera to make movie magic.

      Cannes wall 7e art

              Cannes wall painting behind the camera

We didn't get to see paintings of Alain Delon, Harold Lloyd and Charlie Chaplin.  They'll just have to wait for another time.  If you'd like to see all these excellent works of art yourself a map of their locations is available to download here.  

      Cannes cinema wall 100 years cinema

              Cannes wall painting 7e art

      Cannes cinema wall cars

Have you been to Cannes and seen any of these murals?  Which one is your favourite?

 

Here's a PIN to share!

STREET ART in Cannes France

 

MummyTravels
 
 
 
Last modified on

Comments

  • Guest
    Cathy ( MummyTravels ) Wednesday, 02 March 2016

    I love these - I had no idea these were in Cannes but how perfect for the city. What a great way to explore by spotting them as well. Thanks for joining up with #citytripping

  • Guest
    Lydia C. Lee Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    Very cool!

  • Guest
    Tanja/The Red Phone Box travels Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    Oh yes I've seen some of them but not all:) #city tripping

  • Guest
    Katy Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    I love this! And I love your spot of paradise. Thanks so much for sharing and for showing the world street art can be so much more than mindless tagging!

  • Guest
    Abbie Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    This is so interesting Phoebe...such a brilliant post and so great to see a different side of Cannes - street art giving the french riviera an edge!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    Thanks for your lovely comment Abbie :)

  • Guest
    Rosie @Eco-Gites of Lenault Monday, 01 June 2015

    Oh I do love some good street art and this is (IMHO) very good. I missed out Cannes when I was travelling along the Med coast many years ago - looks like that was a mistake!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 01 June 2015

    Time to come back Rosie! I'll give you the tour :)

  • Guest
    Louise Monday, 11 May 2015

    I've never been to Cannes sadly, so I haven't seen any of these- but how fabulous they are! I love public art projects like this. I hope I get to see them myself one day.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    I hope you do too Louise. :)

  • Guest
    Wander Mum Saturday, 09 May 2015

    What a great post Phoebe! I had no idea these beautiful murals existed. It's made me want to go to Cannes even more. Thanks for the insight. #allaboutfrance

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    You must come and stay at Lou Messugo and I'll take you on a tour!

  • Guest
    Wander Mum Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    We really must come and visit Phoebe! Have loved re-reading this post for #citytripping... was trying to spot some more of the stars in the big mural but think you've got all the ones I know. Being a film fan would adore discovering all these in Cannes.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Tuesday, 01 March 2016

    Yes you really MUST come and stay Elizabeth!

  • Guest
    Christy Swagerty Friday, 08 May 2015

    Phoebe, this is SUCH AN AWESOME POST!!! I have yet to go to Cannes, but I may be a bit obsessed with classic movies, and I can't quit scrolling through these photos over and over again! Now I'm plotting how I can "blend" into some of these mural backgrounds someday... SO COOL!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    You are always so enthusiastic Christy, I love it! Thanks for such a great comment.

  • Guest
    Betty Carlson Thursday, 07 May 2015

    Very interesting! My daughter was actually in Cannes for the festival last year at the same time, but I never get any photos of the city, just mainly photos of parties!

    I especially love the train station photo...

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    It's amazing how few people ever notice these murals. I'm not surprised your daughter didn't get any photos of them, most are quite hidden.

  • Guest
    Funky Wellies Thursday, 07 May 2015

    Lovely movie-related shots.
    Nice to see another side of Cannes. xx

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    I'm glad you liked it.

  • Guest
    Di Warren Thursday, 07 May 2015

    Wow! Cool murals.
    I haven't been to Cannes but now it's on the list, thanks Phoebe.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    Well you know where to stay if you come!

  • Guest
    Melodie K Thursday, 07 May 2015

    The colors and scale of these murals are a treat to see. And who doesn't enjoy remembering favorite characters and movie scenes? My favorite is the one depicting some of filmdom's most popular "standing" in the various balconies.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 11 May 2015

    It's one of my favourites too Melodie.

  • Guest
    Jessica @ Independent Travel Cats Wednesday, 28 May 2014

    These are really cool murals. I love this idea and would enjoy walking around town to see these. We actually just drove through Cannes on our one trip there and took in the wonderful coastline nearby but didn't explore the town itself. But this would be something we would love to see.

  • Guest
    Richard Saturday, 24 May 2014

    Maybe you could, as a sideline, organise walking tours for the stars to see the murals during next year's Festival? They're all stupendously rich, so you could charge them € 1,000 a pop. They probably wouldn't sign on if you asked less, as they wouldn't take you seriously.

  • Guest
    Me and the tiny 3(Tammy) Saturday, 24 May 2014

    I have always wanted to visit Cannes and reading this as made the want to visit even greater, the murals are fascinating thank you for sharing

  • Guest
    Jill Thursday, 22 May 2014

    I love this great street art. Wonderful. And I love the sound of your rental - I wish!
    I was in France only once about 8 years ago, I long to go back, thanks for taking me there.
    Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for stopping by my blog today.

  • Guest
    Adelina Tuesday, 20 May 2014

    I love murals like these. They must be so much fun to stumble upon when you're just wandering around town. What a great way to play homage to fantastic films through the years.

  • Guest
    frankaboutcroatia Tuesday, 20 May 2014

    Wow, I've been to Cannes a couple of times, but have never noticed these paintings (except the painting that celebrates 100 years of cinema, but this one is hard to miss). I'll be back in December, and this time I'll try to pay attention to them. Thanks for sharing!

  • Guest
    SJ Monday, 19 May 2014

    Ohhh I wanna see this place now. If I come, I'll be sure to get you to come and take me . Looks great Big thanks for taking the time to link up with us for #SundayTraveler

  • Guest
    Lauren Monday, 19 May 2014

    Those murals are so cool!!! Some of the best street art I've seen! It looks so realistic, a great celebration of film!

  • Phoebe
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    What a fabulous photo essay of Cannes! I love the idea of film-themed murals and the quality of the ones in Cannes looks top notch. I wish they'd do this in Toronto!

  • Guest
    Corinne Monday, 19 May 2014

    Phoebe, Great street art. I love the film-themed murals...very cool!

  • Guest
    Kirsty Hijacked By Twins Monday, 19 May 2014

    Wow what fantastic art work, I have never seen these before. Thank you for sharing x

  • Guest
    noel Sunday, 18 May 2014

    Wow, that was quite a walking tour, loved seeing all those large street art, great job. I hope you can link up your wonderful post with us also for Travel Photo Mondays.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    Thanks Noel, will do!

  • Guest
    Emma Sunday, 18 May 2014

    I do love Cannes, and I love that street art too, brilliant! :)

  • Guest
    http://Lisa Sunday, 18 May 2014

    These are magnificent, especially the film strip of kisses. Thanks for posting.

  • Guest
    Caitlyn Sunday, 18 May 2014

    I went to Cannes in 2007 with the intention of seeing the murals - I got a map from the tourist office and everything. I then stepped out of the tourist office and was met with the biggest thunderstorm I had seen in my life! I sipped a coffee for two hours, waiting for it to pass but alas that was not the case, so I headed back to Nice. Next time!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    What a shame! We do get pretty spectacular storms here sometimes. You'll have to come back Caitlyn.

  • Guest
    Esther Sunday, 18 May 2014

    What a great Tour, so colourful. I have yet to discover that side of France.

  • Guest
    Ming L. @OnALim1 Sunday, 18 May 2014

    This is very very cool to learn about, bookmarking it for a future trip. Thanks for sharing!

  • Guest
    clarenich@googlemail.com Saturday, 17 May 2014

    I've never been but this looks like SO much fun.

  • Guest
    Marcia Saturday, 17 May 2014

    Beautiful murals, glad you found so many of them. I love to see this other side of Cannes, a place I only think of when the festival rolls around.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    The festival puts Cannes on the map, but it's busy all year with other events, and living only 30 mins away I visit a lot. However, I only just discovered these murals!!

  • Guest
    Lesley Peterson @culturetripper Saturday, 17 May 2014

    Amazing side of Cannes I've never heard of before. My cinema idol is Jacques Tati. Would love to take a selfie in front of his mural(s)!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    It was a pity I couldn't get closer to Tati, due to the locked park, but even from a distance it's so obviously him. Not easy to take a selfie though!

  • Guest
    Nancie Friday, 16 May 2014

    They're all amazing! Hard to pick a favorite. I would have to go with Jacque Tati (your favorite), or Marilyn. What a great idea for a walking tour. Some enterprising person might be able to build a little side business! :)

    Thanks for linking up to Travel Photo Thursday!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    You're right, it's a good opportunity to make a tour with a difference, but as far as I'm aware there isn't one yet. Just the map from the city website!

  • Guest
    Michelle Friday, 16 May 2014

    Amazing photos, I would love to see this. Thank you for sharing.

  • Guest
    Jacqui Friday, 16 May 2014

    Thanks Phoebe,

    Brilliant, I've never noticed any of them. I agree with Mary above, the famous kisses, that just takes your breath away. Who doesn't love a bit of romance? Thanks for that, Jacqui

  • Guest
    Mary {The World Is A Book} Friday, 16 May 2014

    These murals are remarkable and a wonderful way to stroll around the city. I didn't know these existed but what a great addition to the city. I love the famous kisses one and the cars. Beautiful photos!

  • Guest
    Rachel Friday, 16 May 2014

    I actually thought there's a really balcony in there, as I was staring at it, though the windows below it do look unreal.. because of the telephone lines. This is so awesome, they should do more! And hopefully I'd be able to see them myself. :)

  • Guest
    jan Friday, 16 May 2014

    They are amazing. It would be a good day trip hunting them all down.

  • Guest
    Mummy Glitzer Thursday, 15 May 2014

    Wow, those murals are fantastic. Thank you for showing them to us.

  • Guest
    Molly S Thursday, 15 May 2014

    Love it! We were only in Cannes for an afternoon (I'm posting about it next week), and I have to say we didn't see any of these, but I'll be keeping an eye out next time!

  • Guest
    there and b ack again Thursday, 15 May 2014

    Such lovely pictures, great to see the 'classics' in a differnt light

  • Guest
    Leigh Thursday, 15 May 2014

    I love the guy on the ladder with the camera. What a great lot of murals. I had no idea Cannes sported these on buildings. It sure makes the walking around interesting.

  • Guest
    Muza-chan Thursday, 15 May 2014

    Lovely pictures :)

  • Guest
    Jackie Smith Thursday, 15 May 2014

    What a wonderful tour of Cannes. I had no idea the murals were so many and varied. . .fuels the desire to visit there!

  • Guest
    Boo Roo and Tigger Too Thursday, 15 May 2014

    Oh my, those paintings are amazing!

  • Guest
    Mummy of two Thursday, 15 May 2014

    Amazing photos. Cannes looks and sounds like such an amazing place to visit. I would love to go one day.

  • higginssally6@gmail.com
    higginssally6@gmail.com Thursday, 15 May 2014

    I'm the 'good old friend'. It was like a treasure hunt, and I got to see many places in Cannes that I think as a tourist I wouldn't normally get to. Thanks for the insiders' view!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    Thanks for sharing it with me Sal! :)

  • Guest
    Catherine Wednesday, 14 May 2014

    What a great tour. I had no idea these paintings on walls happened. It must add to the festival atmosphere especially if you see it for the first time while the festival is on.

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    Yes it does Catherine, it all adds to the movie magic!

  • Guest
    Gabrielle Wednesday, 14 May 2014

    Very interesting and even though I lived there for 7 years, I have not seen many of these! Thanks for a great tour of Cannes!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    Gabrielle, I only just came across these murals too, while researching something else. I don't know anyone in the area who knows about them!! Ridiculous really as they're huge and fantastic! Next time you come back here you'll have to take a look. Thinking of you at the moment as I always associate the festival and celeb spotting with you!

  • Guest
    YJ Pankhurst Wednesday, 14 May 2014

    Thank you Phoebe for the tour of Cannes! The wonderful pictures and murals made me feel I was there in person! Great photographs! Just love all your blogs!
    YJ Pankhurst

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    Thanks YJ! Not long now till your holiday at Lou Messugo and we get to actually meet!

  • Guest
    ramon Wednesday, 14 May 2014

    Very unusual and very interesting way of visitng Cannes, love it!

  • Guest
    Phoebe Monday, 19 May 2014

    Thanks Ramon!

Leave your comment

Guest
Guest Thursday, 20 July 2017

About Me

phoebe-portrait


facebookpinteresttwitter follow Lou Messugo on Google+Active-Instagram-2-icon

notebook

Trips100 - Travel Blogs
Trips100

 Living in France

AllAboutFranceBadge

BritMums
Expat in France
expat partner's survival guide