banner

Brooklyn Street Art

…loves you more every day.

Chip Thomas and “American Domain” at The Museum Of Capitalism in Oakland

Posted on June 26, 2017

An upside down American flag and a Navajo baby flying through the air.

The two images appear in this new wheatpasted project from Street Artist/Activist Chip Thomas in Oakland California for American Domain, the inaugural exhibition that opened June 17 at the Museum of Capitalism.

Chip Thomas with a photo of  Dan Budnik from 1983 in the Navajo Nation. Oakland, CA. June 2017 (photo © Chip Thomas)

Mr. Thomas says that he was inspired to use this image when reading about the philosophical underpinnings for the show from Erin Elder, who is part of the curatorial collective that organized the show and who asked Thomas to “consider submitting work for a pop up show critically evaluating land use in a capitalist economy,” he tells us.

While an artist could possibly take this charge in a number of directions, he returned to the Navajo and Hopi people and their 130+ year land dispute, specifically a 1984 forced relocation of 9,000 Navajo tribal members. The irony of native peoples fighting over land is not lost on Mr. Thomas, who traces the concept of ownership to the European invaders of North America.

Elder explains of her American Domain show within the inaugural group show which includes artists such as Dread Scott, Jennifer Dalton, Futurefarmers, and Packard Jennings (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Packard_Jennings )”…Under capitalism, land is measured, marked, bounded, guarded, and owned; it is a commodity, a site of production, and oftentimes, capitalism’s dumping ground. Though land ownership is not an inherently American phenomenon, the United States was founded on a land grab and its identity has been consistently wrapped up with the economics of territory. Through artists’ work about fences and walls, boundaries and their trespass, American Domain examines notions of property and ownership.”

Chip Thomas with a photo of  Dan Budnik from 1983 in the Navajo Nation. A man is seen walking in front of the mural on his way to the recycling center near by. Oakland, CA. June 2017 (photo © Chip Thomas).

This wall in particular now has this 1983 photo from a demonstration over the Navajo/Hopi dispute taken by photographer Dan Budnick that evokes the feelings of chaos, rootlessness, and rage that characterized the fight about territory. It also may remind some of the many who could not adjust to the relocation and losing their tribal ways and who became homeless over time.

“Dan’s images from his time at Big Mountain immediately came to mind,” says the Street Artist when he was conjuring an idea for a public wall addressing the exhibition theme. “I approached Dan about using one of his images for an installation and found him to be excited by the idea.  Next I sought out a part time resident of Big Mountain whose mother was active in the relocation resistance.  We agreed that, in light of the ongoing struggles of First Nations people to maintain sovereignty over their land, this image is as timely now as it was when it was taken in 1983,” says Thomas.

Chip Thomas with a photo of  Dan Budnik from 1983 in the Navajo Nation. Oakland, CA. June 2017 (photo © Chip Thomas)

Chip Thomas. Oakland, CA. June 2017 (photo © Claudia Escobar)


Addendum from Chip Thomas:


The United States Flag Code
Title 4, Chapter 1

The flag should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.

Installing the image over a week in Oakland led to several insightful moments such as the police officer who pointed out the flag was upside down as he passed in his cruiser or the fireman who stopped his firetruck, got out and engaged me in conversation about the photo.  The most compelling interaction was with a vet who vehemently proclaimed one evening while I was on the lift that he fought for that flag and didn’t appreciate seeing it upside down.  He concluded by saying “Trump 2017!”

Chip Thomas. Oakland, CA. June 2017 (photo © Claudia Escobar)

Two days later he returned and shared that after 8 years of combat in Afghanistan seeing things no one should ever see he now suffers from PTSD, sleeps poorly and can’t hold a job.  Things set him off easily and he has trouble controlling his emotions.  He said he’d gone into service believing in this country and it’s promise of democracy both here and abroad only to realize he’d wasted 8 years of his life and is a changed man.  He apologized for his aggressive tone 2 days earlier and cried as he recounted some of his life experiences.  I thanked him for returning and providing an opportunity for discussion.  We shook hands and embraced before he headed on his way.


BSA<<>>BSA<<>>BSA<<>>

BSA Images Of The Week: 06.25.17

Posted on June 25, 2017


BSA-Images-Week-Jan2015

‘Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017’’ it’s called, because “Kill The Poor” was not testing well in focus groups? Luckily, most people will never get sick or old, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

It’s LGBTQ Pride weekend in New York, the home of the original Stonewall Inn where all the colorful queens bashed back at the cops in 1969. All of these years’ celebrations seem more militant in the face of President Pence’s virulent statements and acts against anybody not straight like him and his “mother”.

Also it’s Eid al-Adha today, the end of Ramadan and a big celebration for Muslim New Yorkers, so best wishes to you.

In Street Art news the big story at the moment appears to be that Banksy may actually be Robert Del Naja from Massive Attack, which may explain why so many of his world views and of humanity are rather dismal, see what we did there?

So here’s our weekly interview with the streets, this week featuring Bert, Chor Boogie, El Sol 25, Gats, LMNOPI, Mr. Toll, Nepo, Resistance is Female, Sonni, Stik, Sipros, and Such.

Top image: Stik (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Chor Boogie for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Chor Boogie for The Bushwick Collective. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Chor Boogie for The Bushwick Collective. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Pride Train (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The Dusty Rebel for #resistanceisfemale. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The Dusty Rebel for #resistanceisfemale. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Mr. Toll (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Gats for The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. Detail. photo © Jaime Rojo)

Gats for The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

NEPO (photo © Jaime Rojo)

El Sol 25 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

LMNOPI (photo © Jaime Rojo)

LMNOPI (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Sonni for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Such . Bert (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Such . Sipros for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Sipros for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

…with some help from Mary… (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Untitled. Brooklyn, NY. June 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“Street Art” by Ed Bartlett: A Quick Primer for the World Traveler

Posted on June 24, 2017

Since the early 70s Lonely Planet publishing has made guidebooks for travelers of the world, enabling people to gain a greater understanding and to appreciate localities, cultures, and histories. Ed Bartlett now adds to this vast compendium of understanding a concise and varied survey of Street Art from his vantage point as an avid bicyclist, traveler, and expert on Street Art.

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

The modest sized and easy to carry hardcover is a quick read that crosses 42 cities, selected pieces from each, and interviews with artists as well. An accessible and attractively illustrated collection of photographs and text, it is a good introduction to the reader of casual interest and an apt primer for those who don’t have much time to immerse themselves but would like to get a solid foundation on this global phenomenon of Street Art, graffiti, and art in the streets in general.

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. The London Police, Skount and Invader in Amsterdam. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Wild Drawing in Athens. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Conor Harrington, Maser and Various artists in Dublin. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Guido van Helten, Agostino Iacurci and Fintan Magee in Kyiv. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Aryz, Inti and Telmo and Miel in Lisbon. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Phlegm, Eine and Remi Rough, Steve More,Augustine Kofie,LXOne and AOC in London. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Guido van Helten in Reykjavik. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

Street Art by Ed Bartlett. Nunca in Toronto. Lonely Planet Publishers. UK. April 2017

BSA Film Friday: 06.23.17

Posted on June 23, 2017

bsa-film-friday-JAN-2015

Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.

Now screening :
1. Pizzeria Da Cane Morto
2. Miss Van – La Symphonie des Songes
3. Berlin Kidz x 1UP in Berlin
4. Cinta Vidal / RAD Napa

bsa-film-friday-special-feature

BSA Special Feature: Canemorto – Pizzeria Da Cane Morto

So it’s Friday and you were thinking of having a pizza party, weren’t you? Luckily your favorite brutalist painters from Italy also know a little bit about the art of pizza.

Welcome to the Pizzeria Da Cane Morto, where the pie is baked by vandals. Twerking included with the price. Bring the kids!

The multi-talented Canemorto Trio also dropped a new limited edition of ten screen-printed pizza boxes that each contain an handmade pizza-sculpture. Order their pizza here: http://wordouteditions.bigcartel.com/

Miss Van – La Symphonie des Songes

This quick video shows the printing process of the new Miss Van ‘La Symphonie des Songes’ etching edition produced and published by Goldmark Atelier, UK.

This edition is based on a mural that Miss Van painted in her home town of Toulouse in 2016.

 

Berlin Kidz x 1UP in Berlin

“One United Uber Power” is how this new video is described, appearing to unite the two crews who appear to be most prolific in graffiti in Berlin right now – although its hard to tell with these masks. The music score follows the action, with a bit of train surfing before the coalescing of crews at the station, the rapid whole-car tagging, the bewildered train riders, the flummoxed authorities – all drawn in such broad strokes that it may call to mind cartoons from Saturday morning with bandits and coppers.

 

Cinta Vidal / RAD Napa

With buildings rotating and tumbling through the sky, everything secure has been uprooted and set adrift in this new mural by Cinta Vidal in California. The third mural in the RAD Napa project to promote the Napa valley and wine country as seen via train, this new one is curated by Thinkspace, shot by Birdman. Looking forward to seeing Cinta in Sweden this September at No Limit Boras!

Earlier Stories »