Faded, but not forgotton
Ghost signs have become a popular subject on Instagram and other image-sharing sites. Perhaps the trend of examining outdated commercial art on buildings is an attempt to connect with the pre-digital world. Maybe it’s just a fascination with the past, but whatever the reason, these forgotten advertisements are getting attention.
Some of these paintings are for brands that remain well-known today, while others promote products or services for companies that have long since gone out of business. The stories behind some of these signs are as interesting as how they came into being — created freehand or with basic stencils by painters who sometimes hung several stories above the street.
Here are 10 impressive examples of ghost signs and the history behind them.