LA CASA DE LA BUENA GENTE de Conchi Álvarez. C/Tres Banderas.

The house of the good people (Ana Neiva Macías Romero, Pilar Márquez Díaz, Emilia Rodrigo Ortiz, Santiago Ruiz Muñoz – C1.2)

This painting belongs to “trompel’oeil” which means that it is a pictorial technique that belongs to Conchi Alvarez. It was made in 2013, is located in Barriada Tres Banderas and it measures 80 square meters. The artist intended the painting to be an interactive experience between residents from the block and people passing by. This painting was made with some special materials brought from Holland which are made to last at least 100 years.

Conchi Alvarez is a well-known artist who works in the STOA art gallery and has also published a book about the mural and its creation. The living artist  was awarded  “Esteponera del año” (Estepona person of the year)in 2019.

In our mind, this painting shows how we behave in normal life in a colourful way.

If we extrapolate this situation to these days it could show us life in confinement because of the virus.Our lives have changed and we have to stay inside these four walls for a period of time and deal with it for the sake of our communities.

In this paint the artist managed to capture the atmosphere of the day-to-day life in a neighbourhood, the idea of the “train train quotidian” according to French people. We can imagine that this is an ordinary building in an ordinary neighbourhood in many different places in the world.

At first glance, it seems strange that everybody is on their balconies but we think they are just enjoying a stunning summer day. Looking carefully, we can see that the elder man is Juan “the cobbler”, who is well-known in this neighbourhood. Supposedly he is taking care of his young granddaughter. From our point of view the two men who are on the second floor are speaking to somebody who is in the street. They might be talking about shopping with their mother. On the other hand, in the attic it looks as if the young girl has caught the moon between her little hands, or maybe, the world. In our humble opinion we think that the artist has managed to capture the impression that the girl has the world in her hands, her future and her own story yet to be written. We would like to point out that in the ground floor we can see in roman numerals the year 2013, the year of the inauguration. If you look closely, you can see one column inside the building. This gives the impression that the structure is a mosque. Finally, outside the building there are two people, a lady and her son, both in red. They are, maybe, waiting for somebody. As far as we are concerned, this little boy knows a lot of local stories told to him by his father and grandfather. In the future this little boy is going to be the next narrator about the stories of his neighbourhood.

At this point we have the impression that if we want we can go inside the building; in other words, this is a perfect example of a “trompe l’oeil”.

This painting is undoubtedly thought-provoking. For many viewers it depicts ordinary people living ordinary lives, but is that what the painter wanted to express?

We find this a moving piece of art, especially now because we are all living on lockdown. Our personal impression when we first looked at it was as if we were in a trance where confusion was the first ingredient. We saw people in that wall who were experiencing everything but freedom. They were experiencing subordination, and maybe repression, but we also witnessed a peaceful home, safety, self-esteem and even more liberty than ever.  The artist could have wanted to portray the real and meaningful emotions lived hidden in a random neighbourhood where only its habitants’ masks could be seen. Maybe she wanted to send a message to all of us to make us stop for a while and look into each other´s feelings. We couldn´t put into words how we feel about it, but what we are certain about is that this masterpiece by Conchi Álvarez represents ordinary people living extraordinary lives.


This is a mural where you can see reflected the experience of a neighbourhood through a balcony, viewed from different perspectives, filling the street with colour and symbolism. The image shows a woman with her son on the first floor, in her house outside with the door open. On the second floor there is a grandfather on the balcony and the girl sitting down covers her face from the sun. The shadow has a pale pink colour which gives depth to the drawing, as well as the yellow light in the background inside the first floor. The artist was inspired by the daily life of the residents of the famous neighbourhood called ¨Tres Banderas¨.  She wanted to show in this picture the quiet life that families have always enjoyed outdoors, thanks to the good weather in the city of Estepona.


This mural was painted by Conchi Álvarez, a history teacher, who now owns an art gallery because she’s also a painter. The mural was made in one of the buildings of a humble neighbourhood, over a completely empty white wall. The artist recreated a real space full of life, with plants and balconies from where the neighbours look out to. Although the mural was painted in 2013, nowadays, the people in the balconies have a special meaning, because, due to the pandemic, it is almost our only contact with life outside. The characters that appear in the mural don’t live in the building, except for the old man on the first floor, who is a well-known shoemaker. The woman on the third floor, who is waving, doesn’t exist in real life, she’s imagined. The rest of characters are portraits of the artist’s family and the woman at the entrance is a self-portrait of the painter.