Imagine walking the streets of bustling cities throughout the world – Los Angeles, Madrid, Istanbul, Philadelphia, Bali, San Francisco, etc. – and discovering small crystal geodes hiding in unexpected and secluded spaces. Such hidden surprises do exist, and they’re the work of Paige Smith, an installation artist in LA who aims to transform commonplace objects into “anachronic object[s] that no longer follow the ‘regular’ world’s rules.”

Since the street art project’s start in 2011, Paige has sought cracks between bricks, drain grates, old phone booth interiors, used cans, and the insides of pipes to work her magic – celebrating the astonishing allure within cities. Using spray paint on paper- or silicon-molded resin, she imitates the rugged patterns of minerals to fill the blisters and blemishes of urban life with unexpected charm and unique artistry. Her installations don’t last forever, but that’s the point – her work compels beholders to pause, be present, and appreciate the delicacy in the ordinary.

These art installations popping up throughout the world indicate the growing struggle between the environment and industry; they’re gems typically created by nature, but street artist Paige constructs them with manmade substances and distributes them throughout major metropolitan areas. Unsurprisingly, her message is spreading. She’s gained a following of artists in places she hasn’t been (South Africa, South Korea, Jordan, Australia) who install similarly beautiful artworks there as well.

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Image credit: Yagmur Ruzgar