Someone Thought Of A Brilliant Way To Fight Swastika Graffiti That Started Appearing On The Streets of Berlin

Published 6 years ago

Love and beauty always triumph hate. The Paintback project, started by graffiti artist and paint shop owner Ibo Omari, tries to do just that by painting over swastikas that keep appearing on the streets of Berlin.

The migrant crisis seems to be the cause of the recent surge of the right-wing extremism in Germany. The uneasiness of the situation was reflected in the government elections in 2017, when a far-right party Alternative for Germany won 94 seats (12.4%) in the parliament. The hatred also found its way to the streets in the form of the infamous Nazi symbols – swastikas.

“When tourists come to Berlin and look at a wall and see a swastika, they’ll think: ‘What’s going on here? There are Nazis everywhere!’ And we don’t want that,” Omari told Reuters. That is why he and his fellow artists started ‘fixing’ the hateful symbols by turning them into cute bunnies, owls, and other inventive creations. “An artistic symbol obviously looks much nicer than an ugly message and then people walk through the city with a smile on their faces.”

The idea for the project came to Omari back in 2015, when a man came into his shop to buy some spray paint to cover up a swastika he saw in the park when playing with his son. Initiatives similar to the Paintback movement has now spread all over the country as artists continue to fight hate with art. Scroll down to see some of the examples of the graffitis and check out the campaign’s video here.


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Image source: Legacy BLN – Graffiti Culture & Art Tools


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Image source: joshua_jesse


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Image source: Legacy BLN – Graffiti Culture & Art Tools


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Berlin, Die kulturellen Erben, far right, Germany, graffiti, hate, ibo omari, love, Nazi, paintback, street art, swastika
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