Dear readers, riddle me this: What's the only thing cooler than a Scottish castle? A Scottish castle covered in psychedelic graffiti, of course.
Allow us to introduce the Kelburn Castle, a 13th century building located 35 miles outside Glasgow. As you may notice, it has quite the unusual facade. The royal housing unit was revamped by Brazilian street artists in 2007, when the Earl of Glasgow, Patrick Boyle, learned he had to remove a cement render that had been added to the building in the 1950s. At the request of his son, he resolved to paint the render prior to its removal. He enlisted artists Nina Pandolfo, Nunca and Os Gêmeos to cover the castle in cartoonish and chromatic designs that could make many a head spin.
It was an unprecedented artistic move that fused the ephemeral, urban culture of street art with the traditional, permanent and rural character of the castle, creating a timeless paradox of visual beauty. "It is a project of contrasts and collaboration that bridges between cultures, rural and urban realms and unites two proud and very different cultures," explains the Kelburn Estate.
The work was originally permitted to exist for only three years, but because of its wildly popular following and the devotion of The Earl, the graffiti feast has managed to hang on for far longer. Unfortunately, a 2012 inspection revealed that the cement was causing damage to the castle's original walls and should be removed, according to the BBC. The graffiti will likely be removed in the summer of 2015, but there is hope. The castle's owners, the Earl and his son David, plan to hold a contest for architects and designers to create equally stunning visuals to live on the castle exterior -- visuals that don't do damage to the castle itself.
If you've ever dreamed of decking out a medieval castle in contemporary street art style, this is your (probably, one and only) chance. In any case, you best be buying your ticket to Glasgow to see this rare street art treasure before it's gone. And for an equally magical experience, check out this New York farmhouse turned rainbow playground.