The Meaningful Street Art That Covers One Buenos Aires Starbucks

The walls inside coffee shops and local cafes have long been hubs for artists and creative expression, and Starbucks takes that tradition to their exterior walls as well. It's quite common for Starbucks locations around the world to collaborate with artisans of all sorts of backgrounds in order to celebrate local customs and traditions while also developing unique artwork to display in their stores. One of these famed pieces can be found in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where the outside walls of the La Lucila Starbucks boast a mural painted by Argentinian artist Fio Silva. It wraps around the store, offering a beautiful display of Argentinian culture.

The La Lucila mural is painted against a light gray background, and only includes the colors white, black, yellow, and red. Silva's use of flowing lines give the piece an airy quality, which is perfect for the organic subject matter. The mural features two birds, a sparrow and a white-tipped plantcutter, that are especially common in the Buenos Aires region. Looking at the mural, you can also spot a coffee plantation in the lower corner. While coffee isn't grown in Argentina, the country does have a diverse coffee culture thanks in part to its high population of Italian immigrants.

The meaning behind the art

This artwork also portrays a coral tree, Argentina's national flower. The coral tree, or the ceibo in Spanish, has a long history in Argentinian culture. As one story goes, there was once a young woman who was captured by invading conquistadors and burned at the stake. The woman, Anahí, was constantly singing about the nature of her land, and in a display of courage, that's what she did until the moment of her death. The next morning, in the spot where Anahí died, a ceibo was growing. This is just one legend that cements the flower as a representation of bravery in Argentina.

Murals serve a few important purposes, like making art accessible to the masses. In a world that keeps building more and more generic skyscrapers and office complexes, murals bring visual interest to a community, and give citizens something to engage with other than brick and concrete. Murals like this, that serve as reminders of a region's culture and history, can also serve to bring communities together.

The La Lucila store is far from the only unique Starbucks. There are countless locations around the globe with art, architecture, and international drinks that you won't be able to find at your local coffee shop. Sitting with friends while you sip coffee and discuss art is one of life's simple pleasures, and places like the La Lucila Starbucks help support that experience by putting the art and the coffee in the same place.