Anna Stolyarova was born in Ukraine, left home for London when she was 18, travelled the globe and now lives in the Netherlands. Having worked at various law firms and after a successful career in e-commerce, she decided to turn her passion into her work, and founded the Street Art Museum in Amsterdam.
'Travelling for my job, I got to visit lots of different cities. But all I ever saw was an office and a hotel. So I decided to "escape" the corporate environment and go out to explore the cities, and that's when my fascination with street art began. I learned to recognise the work of street artists and discovered a worldwide subculture that was new to me. Street art is always original and tells stories through pictures on things like bridges and walls. It can be a political message, a critique, a parody or something personal.'
Street art is marketing for Nieuw-West
'I live in the Nieuw-West district of Amsterdam and realised that this could be a great setting for street art. Surprisingly, neighbourhood residents were very quick to back my initiative. It was a welcome change in their grey surroundings. It brightened up the neighbourhood and made residents feel proud! Now there are organised excursions there. Russians, Chinese, people from all over the world, really, go along to see the works. In the process they discover that there's much more to Amsterdam than just the city centre. And now we've even got a Street Art Museum. Street art is like "funky" marketing for Nieuw-West.'
Street art at Schiphol
'It's really exceptional of course for a corporate environment like Schiphol to be embracing street art. "Illegal" art at an airport – imagine! In a place where absolutely nothing is left to chance! This is a bold experiment for Schiphol and an incredible challenge and opportunity for the artists. The intention behind street art in the Schiphol Central Business District is to surprise the people who work here. Last year we organised guided tours at Schiphol to artworks by the French artist OakOak. Some jump out at you, others you've got to look for. People who went on the tours were extremely enthusiastic, both about the art and about the fact that it took them to places they'd never seen before!'
In the coming months walks will be organised to see artworks by the French street artist Sandrine, on 7 February, 14 March and 11 April. These ‘Office Walks With a Twist’ take one hour, starting at 12 noon and ending at 1pm. Anna Stolyarova will take groups on a personal guided tour of several special artworks. Sign up on the SPOT Schiphol website, and get ready to be surprised!
Sign up for the walk of 7 February:
Sign up for the walk of 14 March:
Sign up for the walk of 11 April: