Brooklyn Street Art

…loves you more every day.

Lucky in New York

Posted on November 20, 2018

Back when we began this BSA journey we used to tell people we felt lucky to be in New York and to witness the birth of a new Street Art movement here and to walk the streets discovering people, fashion, architecture, and Street Art like Walt Whitman taking a walk through Leaves of Grass.

Happily we’re still saying it, with total conviction.

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Serendipity happens again here as we discover a new painter, a new style of painting on the street. It recalls the illustrations on commercial greeting cards and children’s story books from the 1960s and 1970s perhaps; a blushing bashful blundering bushel of big-eyed bliss bisecting the blond head of a slumbering beauty. It’s all Bambi and Mary Poppins up in here.

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

For the quote you have to go back to the 1860s and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

“I can’t go back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

Is their more that we need to know? The artist, maybe? No, they say never meet your heroes.

Getting back on the bike, we still feel lucky.

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Lucky Rabbit (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Igor Ponosov Enlightens with “Russian Urban Art: History and Conflicts”

Posted on November 19, 2018

An academically sourced opinion-based essay in book form that looks to art, social, economic, and geopolitical movements during the start of the 20th century to better understand the evolution of Urban Art in post-Soviet Russia, Igor Ponosov delivers a welcome reconstruction of the timeline and movements that bring urban art to this day.

With the renewed interest in public art and muralism that has erupted over the last decade in many so-called Western cities it is good to learn how the public space in Russia has been catalyzed not-only by Hip Hop and new graffiti forms from Europe but also the history of Avant-garde art movements and Soviet Muralism in Russian Urban Art: History and Conflicts.

With a thorough yet brief recap of a dozen decades of art/social movements, Ponosov illustrates that it is a slowly but widely fluctuating wave of events and sentiments and social-political upheaval that brings art to the street over a century; during times of relative liberalism in artistic freedom during the Tsarists one century ago contrasted a short time later with abolishment of political expression of the Stalinist era that heralded state power and monumentalism, suprematists, and propagandizing the public. Interestingly it’s the constructivist and the realism aesthetics that are currently being repurposed for much of the colorful commercial and state-funded muralism that is happening today on massive Moscow and St. Petersburg walls, and Ponosov helps to illustrate, if not disentangle, the movements that co-evolve over the previous century.

It may prove fascinating to graffiti writers and Street Artists to learn the trajectory and timing of the arrival of Hip Hop culture in the USSR and how it proved itself an enthusiastic student to what was originally an organically occurring series of artistic practices within a mix of communities. The “expansion of Western culture” into post Soviet Russia, as he describes it, occurs a decade (or more) after the original birth of hip hop, yet the importation retains many of the same art practices and ethos during the cultural translation.

The evolution of Street Art on the scene may have been quicker due to immediate digital communications and because of the new practices having similarity to pre-existing mural and fine art practices in Russian cultural history as well as global graffiti ‘jams’. Similarly, the rise in international ‘street art’ festivals looks like it has influenced events here as well as the co-opting/ cultivating of non-political eye-candy murals for commercial and gentrification goals.

It’s enlightening to learn about the rise of something called ‘Actioning’ that recalls the Situationists, and urban performance as part of the thawing post Cold War Glasnost approach to public space. Equally riveting are Posonov’s observations and interest in the more modern, less flashy conceptual street practices and the diverse nature of expressions that defy classification in typical Street Art terms that he describes as a “Partizaning” – a phenomenon of socially engaged street art.

“The tactics and numerous actions of the activists of the Partizaning movement, organized over the course of several years, reflects the ideals of collectivism, metal assistance and responsibility,” he writes of a practice that defies the commonly held assumptions of Urban Art as being antisocial and purely vandalism. “They are intended to restore citizens’ faith that global changes are possible even when working on a local level – be it a staircase, a yard or a neighborhood – through the discourse of urban planning.”

Densely compiled, amply illustrated, and providing an endless series of sparks for future fires, Mr. Posonov makes the discussion open and easy to access, adroitly staying free of corrupting jargon or self-important Art-speak that proves empty. Consider it a concise, reliable eye-opening primer that you can reference into the future to appreciate the evolution of Urban Art in Russia.

Igor Ponosov. Russian Urban Art: History And Conflicts. Moscow 2018. Published in collaboration with Street Art Museum, St Petersburg, Russia.

BSA Images Of The Week: 11.18.18

Posted on November 18, 2018


Kobra is rumored to have left New York this week, 18 murals later, a survey of pop cultural icons known to postcard buyers in the city for years – all in technicolor and in very large scale.  In a story with many layers of irony, a skatewear brand got reprimanded by a Sacsix, a New York street artist, for postering over his wheatpaste.  And Street Artist Ron English bought a street Banksy this week at auction and announced to the press that it was part of his strategy to discourage people from taking illegal art off the streets.

Meanwhile new stuff is popping off in Ridgewood, Queens, where some of the stuff below is from, proving that the scene is still incredibly relevant to artists and fans alike.

So here is our weekly interview with the streets, this week featuring Boy Kong, Chris RWK, City Kitty, Chance Paperboy, Damien Mitchell, Jaye Moon, Kashink, Kirza, K Liu Long, MeresOne, Myth, Raf Urban, Rx Skulls, Square, Squid Licker, Gane, Texas and Zimad.

Top Image: Squid Licker for Superchief Gallery. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kashink for Superchief Gallery. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Chris RWK for 212 Arts. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Jaye Moon (photo © Jaime Rojo)

It looks like Myth is bolting out from NYC…So long pal. We’ll miss you but BSA will always love you:-) (photo © Jaime Rojo)

MeresOne (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Writers with pigeons… (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kashink . Boy Kong . K Liu Long. Superchief Gallery. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Gane . Texas (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Since JR completed his collaboration with Time magazine on the Houston/Bowery Wall there have been two mass shootings with multiple fatalities in the USA. And by the way the shooters were not immigrants, asylum seekers or refugees. They both were white male, American citizens. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

JR . Time magazine and an anonymous artist updates the wall to reflect the number of fatalities from the new mass shooting in the USA… (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Raf Urban with a message of hope. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Zimad gives Edgar Allen Poe some love and The Raven… (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Square (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Squid Licker . Boy Kong for Superchief Gallery. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

City Kitty . Rx Skulls (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Damien Mitchell paints Chance Paperboy. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Falcon with tag on a rooftop in NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Untitled. Brooklyn, NY. November 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Panmela Castro: “Doriridade” and the Sisterhood of Shared Pain in Rio

Posted on November 17, 2018

“I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own.”

― Audre Lorde

Panmela Castro. Dororidade” (Painrity) Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. November 2018 (photo © Panmela Castro)

Brazilian Street Artist Panmela Castro is unveiling her new three story high mural in Rio de Janeiro that acknowledges the sisterhood that comes from shared pain. She calls it “Dororidade” and tells BSA that it explains the relationship of affection and solidarity between women who have bonded through experiences of anguish and misery.

Panmela Castro. Dororidade” (Painrity) Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. November 2018 (photo © Panmela Castro)

“It creates an image of two black women joined by their hair, sisters of shared minds, ideas, experiences,” says the artist, who has painted murals advocating for women’s rights, power, and showcased beauty in more than 30 cities around the world. In addition to overt violence, Castro says that this mural is addressing, “The pain that hurts when being attacked by machismo and the pain that hurts when being attacked by racism.”

The mural will be launched on November 20th, Black Consciousness Day, in Rio de Janeiro, with a big party from 4 to 8 pm.

Panmela Castro. Dororidade” (Painrity) Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. November 2018 (photo © Panmela Castro)

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