There are over 150 fantastic Lyon murals painted all over the walls of what was once a pretty colourless city. We only managed to see a grand total of THREE, and completely by accident at that. I can only thank the travel gods above that we stumbled upon Fresque des Lyonnais – one of the most famous of all of Lyon’s murals.
This is what happens when you don’t do any research about a city before visiting. Or if all your energy is focused on eating. Which it was. *blush
If I could visit again, I’d map out every single one of Lyon’s murals and make a game out of finding them, instead of wasting time trying to get into the city’s traboules or secret passageways.
Fresque des Lyonnais
Painted by the artist collective, CitéCréation, La Fresque des Lyonnais covers more than 800 square metres. It’s painted on 2 sides of a windowless building located at the corner of 2 rue de la Martinière and 49 quai Saint Vincent. There are 31 famous people from Lyon and the surrounding area painted on the building, including Antoine de Saint Exupéry (Le Pétit Prince), the Lumière brothers (pioneers of cinema), and Paul Bocuse (the father of gastronomy).
This incredible Lyon mural was created using the trompe l’eoil painting technique, which was also the method by which I became a wall-climbing ninja, rode a dolphin, and got shot out of a cannon, in Seoul. And it certainly lives up to its French translation for “deceiving the eye.”
The figures on the Fresque des Lyonnais are so lifelike, it’s hard to tell the tourists from the paintings!
Fresque des Lyonnais Map
You’ll find this huge mural at 2 Rue de la Martinière in Lyon, France.
Lyon Murals you should see
The Fresque des Lyonnais was so incredible, I really wish we’d seen a lot more of Lyon’s murals, instead of wasting our time trying to enter and find our way through the city’s network of traboules (which are supposed to be open to the public, but in practice, are not).
As for the other Lyon Murals we happened upon? They included this remarkable lion advertising a furniture store on another misguided self-tour through the canut (or silkweavers) district (are you sensing a theme here yet?), and the exterior of a hotel.
When we saw these chairs on the outside of this hotel in Lyon, we assumed they were ACTUAL chairs glued to the hotel. But now that I know the city is covered in trompe l’eoil art, I’m not so sure. Perhaps they’re actually paintings! Because sticking chairs to the outside of a hotel is pretty weird, and a potential hazard, wouldn’t you say?
No matter how much I look at it though, I still can’t decide. What do you think? Real chairs or trompe d’eoil painting?