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Brooklyn Street Art

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“West Side is the Best Side”, Vogue & BAM In Oakland

Posted on September 18, 2014

Today we have the honor of photographer, author and lecturer Mr. James Prigoff sharing with BSA readers his images and observations about a new 8,000 square foot mural that went up in Oakland last month paying tribute to graffiti’s love of locomotives, Oakland’s history as a port town and ship builder, and a line out of Tupac Shakur’s “California Love”.  A neighborhood project that aims to educate and beautify, two old school writers from The O named Vogue and BAM (Norman Chuck and Mike Tyau) gathered together some friends and interns to knock this mammoth one out. But enough from us, we’ll let Mr. Prigoff paint the scene for you.

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE (photo © Jim Prigoff)

By James Prigoff

I have been documenting Norman Vogue and Mike “BAM” Tyau’s Spraycan painting for thirty years. It was evident in the early days of West Coast “writing” that the two of them and their crews had very special talent.

Following their work over the years brought me to the Wrist Ship Supply building in West Oakland yesterday.

Modern Graffiti Art started on the East Coast with simple tags and evolved over the years until it became the most significant art form of the last forty years. In the evolution, part of the art form became Street Art and today is entitled Urban Art. The variety of imagery would fill endless books, light years away from what once were known as Graffiti Masterpieces.

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

The mural that these artists have created, “West Side is the Best Side”, is historically important for many reasons and I think it has an significant place among the art form’s historical images for these reasons;

  1.  It is technically very proficient as an example of how sophisticated the use of the spray can has become.

  2.  It pays tribute to a few of the most important writers to develop on the West Coast, particularly an iconic young R.I.P who wrote DREAM.

  3.  It is a classic in that it goes back to the roots of name writing and characters.

  4.  It celebrates the train writing that brightened the drab railroad cars and became a vehicle to send the “writer’s” name to distant cities.

Put it all together and they have created a very special piece of art, far more so than the average eye would perceive.

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

Sage coordinated the deal at first and got all the scissor/boom lifts for the artists to use and coordinated daily operations early on. Jase, King157, Sear & Done/TDK all painted their pieces within one day. Vogue painted his & Dream’s throwies all within one day also. The “Schmoe” piece was painted by Done on the caboose in memory of him since he passed away in a car accident back in July and he was a part of the TDK crew.

I’ve told Sage to help us file this at the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest train mural.

 
(Continued credits continue at the end of posting)

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

brooklyn-street-art-vogue-bam-jim-prigoff-oakland-09-14-web-11

Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

brooklyn-street-art-vogue-bam-jim-prigoff-oakland-09-14-web-9

Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

brooklyn-street-art-vogue-bam-jim-prigoff-oakland-09-14-web-6

Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

brooklyn-street-art-vogue-bam-jim-prigoff-oakland-09-14-web-7

Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

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Vogue/Bam collaboration with help from Derp, Jase, King157, Goser, Sear & Done/TDK, Robz & Colour. West Oakland, CA. (photo © Jim Prigoff)

In addition to Bryan “DERP,” three other interns who worked on the mural include Thavin Rajanakhan, Thitiwat Phromratanapongse, and Dominic Cheng

“We would not have been able to complete the first half of this mural without these guys,” say Vogue and Bam, who wish to express their gratitude to everyone and especially to the interns.

 

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