In fact, they've become important elements of many colorful public projects, particularly in large cities. However, we've also found that some designers and architects have taken this concept one step further—to the interiors of homes. Take a look at some of our favorite artful murals and get ready to be inspired.
The recently opened W Hotel in Bellevue, Washington, takes cues from traditional Pacific Northwest lake houses for the design of the contemporary interiors. Several murals have been worked into the hotel's interior plan, including a spectacular grand mural that winds down several stories around a floating staircase and depicts the region’s history.
Many of the rooms in the Ace Hotel's Portland location feature murals as unique room decor, adding to the hotel's distinctly Pacific Northwest vibe.
The Carlton Arms Art Project has become a permanent art exhibit at the Carlton Arms Hotel in New York City, where every room now features colorful works of art by artists from around the world. The art-in-residence program was started in the early-1980s when The Carlton Arms Hotel was a welfare hotel. As rooms were vacated, they were scrubbed, repaired, and given over to artists. The program continues today and offers artists free room and board in New York City for the duration of their project, and has resulted in some dynamic pieces.
Espelho de Água was built in 1940 at Praça do Império—the site of that year's Exhibition of the Portuguese World—to serve as the restaurant for a celebration of the country's formation. The building had undergone subsequent renovations that muddied its modernist style, but DC . AD and Victor Vicente recently returned to restore the building. They transformed it into a lively dining room and art gallery, preserving an original mural by Sol LeWitt.
Located just a 10-minute walk from Oahu's Waikiki Beach, the design of the Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club takes a step back in time to Waikiki’s midcentury heyday. The covered cabana area by the pool showcases a hand-painted mural by Brendan "The Blob" Monroe that creates a funky backdrop inspired by the flow of water. Local artist, illustrator, and curator Jasper Wong co-curated additional mural artwork, which is dispersed throughout the property.
Supported by donations, Forest For The Trees is a nonprofit organization formed in 2013 that's dedicated to the creation of contemporary public art in Portland. Essentially an annual mural festival, which brings together local and international artists to create public art for the city, the name comes from the phrase, "can't see the forest for the trees," signifying an inability to understand the big picture when you're only focused on what's in front of you.
This wall mural by David Flores decorates the diverse neighborhood of Atwater Village, an up-and-coming pocket of L.A. that shares borders with Silver Lake, Elysian Valley, Los Feliz, and Griffith Park.
This magnificent Miami street mural was painted by artist Maya Hayuk for Art Basel 2013. Invited by Wynwood Walls to create a work of art for their "Women On The Walls" project, Hayuk's geometric mural is a blast of tropical color.
British artist Louis Masai traveled across America in 2016 to fight species extinction through art. Here, Florida's Manatees get a shout-out on the streets of Miami with this colorful mural.
Take inspiration from street art and hotel design in your own home by applying the art form to your own walls. Murals can also look great on ceilings, as observed in this playful design that Matthew Hufft created for his children's playroom in his family's home in Kansas City, Missouri.
Get the Dwell Newsletter
Be the first to see our latest home tours, design news, and more.