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Luxury Brands Are Taking Over the Street Art Scene

Gucci, Louboutin and Fendi are hiring graffiti artists in a bid to fit in with street culture⁠⁠⁠—and score points on social media.

A Christian Louboutin mural on Great Eastern Street, East London, painted by the Global Street Art Agency.

A Christian Louboutin mural on Great Eastern Street, East London, painted by the Global Street Art Agency.

Photographer: Jason Alden/Bloomberg

Tourists flock to London’s Shoreditch to admire the street art that coats the trendy neighborhood in a riot of color. What they may not expect to find alongside works by Banksy or Mr Cenz are the spray-painted logos of Swatch and Christian Louboutin.

From London to Los Angeles and Sao Paulo, advertisers have latched on to graffiti’s visual pull and are paying spray-paint artists to add a gritty, urban edge to their brand campaigns.