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San Francisco’s grand tradition of public art—both officially sanctioned and otherwise—has turned the city into a grand, technicolor canvas, and nowhere is this more spectacular than the Mission murals. This open-air museum is concentrated in the Mission District, where local and international artists have created works that range from the political to the amusing.
While some of the best murals, such as those decorating the 18th Street Women’s Building, are masterpieces and San Francisco attractions in and of themselves, others make up a landscape of work painted cheek-to-cheek in Balmy and Clarion alleys. Around 24th Street between Alabama and Harrison, the artists of the Precita Eyes Mural Arts and Visitors Center have left a trail of artistic expression, some of which are multiple stories high. Wandering through these muraled streets is one of the quintessential things to do in San Francisco; our guide will acquaint you with the ten most iconic before you hit the pavement and see them for yourself.
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