In our monthly showcase, Untapped Cities Street Art Columnist Christopher Inoa highlights the top five New York City graffiti and street art pieces found on the city’s walls, rooftops and tunnels.

The summer is getting ready to draw its final hot, humid breath. The Untapped Cities team have been making every last summer minute count, and the same could be said of the artists featured this month coming from around the world to leave their mark on the walls of New York City. So if you are looking for one last adventure before Labor Day, we have some pieces here that are worth applying that sunblock for, one last time. Here are our top five favorite street art pieces for August 2015. 

5. Faith 47 in Williamsburg

Faith 47 is an South African artist whose work can best be described as beautiful, intimate and grand. This latest piece on Berry Street in Williamsburg is part of an ongoing series featuring couples the artist herself sees inside the Evol nightclub in Cape Town. In her own words, Faith 47, explains what went through her mind when first witnessing, than later painting these two love birds: “Reflecting on the profound nature of connectedness between people; the fragility of human emotion and the power of touch.”

With their faces invisible to us, it’s the positioning of these two that tell us that at the moment, what Faith captures may have been short lived, but pure.

4. Danielle Mastrion in Soho

Danielle Mastrion-Untapped Cities-NYC-Art-SOHO-Street Art Danielle Mastrion (TatteredFedoraFlow via Instagram)

Danielle Mastrion work comes off as one part Frida Khalo, one part 80’s B-Girl.  Continuing her themes of both nature and the use of females in her work, Danielle brings some much needed color to this building located between Lafayette and Prince Street in Soho.

3. FAILE in Times Square

FAILE-Times Square-Wishing On You-Wooden Canopy-Brooklyn Museum-NYC

Going to Times Square is not something we would usually normally suggest doing unless you have a very good reason. Starting this month, after you get past all the tourists and costumed panhandlers and painted panhandlers, check out this wonderful new installation by street art duo FAILE.

Located on Broadway Plaza between 42nd and 43rd street, the Brooklyn based duo (who also have an exhibition currently at the Brooklyn Museum) have built one of their famous prayer wheels, this one being the largest we have even seen. Thankfully, the scale did not stop the duo from still inputting their incredible level of detail to both the wheel and the base that holds it. You can look for hours (watch for the people sitting around) and find new elements of the wheel that you didn’t find the first five times you took it for a spin. The installation will be on display until September 1st.

2. JR in Tribeca

Bringing back memories of when he took over Lincoln Center last year, French street artist JR has returned to New York City, leaving us some great pieces throughout Lower Manhattan. Of all the pieces left by him and his team, this piece, between Franklin and Church Streets in Tribeca stands out as our favorite. This time, we didn’t have to walk too many blocks to find this beauty. It’s great to know that JR still tries to keep one upping himself whenever he visits the city.

1. Os Gemeos on the Lower East Side

It has been a very long time since Os Gemeos, the twin artists from South America, gave New York City another giant mural (though they’ve got a midnight installation in Times Square this month). This piece between 1st and 2nd Avenue in the Lower East Side features one of their idiosyncratic characters, seemingly pushing himself out of the building as if moving from one plane of existence to another. The giant mural makes numerous homages to Hip Hop culture, as can be seen from the boombox to the way the character wears his snapback. Os Gemeos owe a lot to Hip Hop culture, for they started as graffiti artists before becoming international superstars. Now if we could just get them to do a mural in the Bronx, the birthplace of Hip Hop, that would be pretty great.

Don’t forget to check out the Top 10 Graffiti and Street Art Pieces for the first half of 2015 and our Street Art Archive.

Currently trapped in Times Square with no idea of what’s up or down, or which ones are the painted ladies and which ones are the menaces to society.