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Graffiti in Vienna January 30, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Public art, signs, & graffiti, Smiley, Travel.
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Graffiti on a concrete divider in Vienna. November 2009.

Some of my favorite smileys are graffiti smileys. Because if you’re going to deface property, you might as well face the property. And make people happy in the process.

Also, if you’ve followed this blog for long, you’ve probably noticed that Vienna comes up a lot. That’s partly because the whole idea for this blog really took shape while we were in Vienna. But judging from the multitude of smiley graffiti (and signs, and artwork) I spotted there, Vienna must just be a really happy city. 🙂


Meditating gingerbread July 21, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Public art, signs, & graffiti, Smiley, Travel.
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Smile! sign promoting meditation. Photo taken in Vienna, Austria, 29 November 2009.

This past week, in the space of just a few days, one of my good friends returned to the US from Vienna, and another good friend left the US for Vienna. Which is fun for me, because my wife and I LOVED Vienna when we were there a couple of years ago.

This sign on the trash bin reads “Smile! Mehr Lebensfreud durch Meditation,” which (Google tells me) translates as “Smile! More joyful living through meditation.” As a Buddhist, I can tell you this is pretty well true, though only the Austrians would think to join the message with smiling gingerbread men! Of course, it was nearing Christmas….

I hope all my traveling friends find more joyful living, and I hope you have a merry Christmas in July!

Smiley street sign April 18, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Public art, signs, & graffiti, Smiley, Travel.
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"Smiley walker" on a street sign. Photo taken near the Museumquartiers in Vienna, Austria.

When my wife and I visited Vienna about a year and a half ago, we had almost as much fun reading the street signs, advertisements, and graffiti as we did visiting museums, churches, and parks. In fact, this blog was born in Vienna, thanks to a piece of smiley graffiti my wife spotted.

This is just a plain street sign showing a stick-figure pedestrian making his way to the Museumsquatier, where we ourselves were headed this same day. But some mischievous Viennese decided to cheer things up with a sticker, and now this pedestrian is a happy fellow indeed!


Detail of the "smiley walker."


Stick-figure graffito, Vienna November 18, 2010

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Public art, signs, & graffiti, Travel.
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Stick-figure graffito. Photo taken in Vienna, Austria.

Believe it or not, this is the guy who started this blog. I’d been toying with the idea for this blog, off and on, for a while, but I was still trying to figure out how to approach the blog, what to include, and so on. Then last year (a year ago this month, in fact), my wife and I were in Vienna, and as we were walking down Burggasse toward the Museumsquartier, we spotted this graffito in a business doorway. I was laughing and enjoying myself when my wife said, “Take a picture — you can put it in your blog!” And I thought, why not?

So here we are.

It took me a while to pull the blog together because most of my personal collection of smileys is in storage back in the States, so I had to wait till our return visit this summer to photograph the collection. But in the meantime, I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for smileys like this one and snapping photo after photo after photo. It’s a constant delight, and now I’m having even more fun sharing these with you.

(In case you’re curious, this is a complete stick figure: arms, legs, and everything. And I do mean everything. You see, this was a rather adult stick figure, all equipment included. As I said, I was laughing. But the smiles on this blog are for everyone, which means kiddos too, so I thought it best to give GAG-boy here a little modesty and cut him off above the waist.)