Nissan has teamed up with a world-renowned street artist to transform its Micra compact urban model into an example of modern art at The City of Gold Urban Art Festival taking place this week in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Established by graffiti and tattoo artist Rasty Knayles – who is the founder of the Grayscale Gallery, which is the city’s only gallery dedicated to street art – The City of Gold Festival sees international street artists join their local counterparts to make the streets come alive with millions of colours.

Nissan has pitched in to support the growing street art community by bringing Isaac Malakkai, a Spanish illustrator and street artist, who now lives in Denmark, for the festival. The carmaker a rather unique ‘canvas’ for Malakkai to work his magic on – the Micra which challenges conventions in city car design, comfort and performance. It is thus considered a perfect fit for a cutting-edge artist whose very art-form defies convention.

During the week-long festival, large walls around the inner city are painted to give some of the worn streets an edgy new look. There are also film screenings and exhibitions for visitors on daily street art and graffiti walking tours.

The festival seeks to highlight the positive aspects of this art-form and to involve the general public in creating a heightened awareness, and appreciation for it. Various events will take place at different locations in the city and it will be open to the general public until the end of this month.

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[Chips Yap]

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