The 16th Avenue Steps by Aileen Barr and Colette Crutcher
San Francisco, California
Photo source: Yellofish

Street art can rapidly shift our concrete world into an outdoor gallery through murals and open minds.  One of the lesser used mediums for expressing these works have been staircases.  When painted, public stair art evolves into a stunning and unexpected canvas for portraits, geometric patterns, and intricate mosaics.

Each rise of a step is one fraction of a larger image. When viewed at the base of the staircase, the individual elements come together for an awe-inspiring effect.

Just as artists have assistance when painting big murals, these types of stair projects are often completed through with the help of many people. The 16th Avenue Tiled Steps in San Francisco, for instance, was a community effort. Ceramist Aileen Barr and mosaic artist Colette Crutcher worked with about 300 volunteers over a two-and-a-half year period to complete their project.

Likewise, a group of artists called Dihzahyners formed a project called Paint Up! and used their creative abilities to beautify staircases in Beirut, Lebanon, one step at a time. Posted below are ten amazing examples of staircases around the world.

Staircase in Seoul, South Korea
Photo credit: Kevin Lowry


Philadelphia Museum of Art
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 
Photo credit: rleigh


Holsteiner Treppe by Professor Horst Gläsker
Wuppertal, Germany
Photo credit: Frizztext


Staircase of Santa Maria del Monte
Caltagirone, Sicily
Photo credit: Andrea Annaloro


Stairs of Peace by Jood Voluntary Team


 Anamorphic stairs by ZAG & SìA Paris, France


Origami steps by Mademoiselle Maurice
Angers, France


Women are Heroes by JR


Musical theater staircase
Seoul, South Korea 
Photo credit: Kimhwan SEOULIST