December 2008

Josh and Favianna are Revolting in Italy!

Not really, I just try to come up with clever headlines

But truth be told, authors of Reproduce and Revolt (Softskull), Josh MacPhee and Favianna Rodriguez are in Italy right now (at the House of Love and Dissent) on their world tour promoting their book on how to make a stencil and change the world.

Flyer from the opening

Flyer from last night's opening

Josh, a Brooklyn street artist, tells BSA that a ton of people came to last night’s event, and tonight is another cool party. “I’m excited to see which graphics from the book resonate with people here, and how that differs from other places.”

The book, a very accessible and quick historical primer on the power of using graphics for social change, features a multitude of stencils you can use immediately.

And that is what the authors intend: In an age of non-stop visual glut from corporate advertising and PR firms, the little guy and gal can seize the power of the message with some thoughtful application of stencils, or a photocopier.

Reproduce and Revolt

Favianna Rodriguez blog

Josh MacPhee at Just Seeds

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Quick Shot – The Anonymous “Piece Process”

Durn, it was awfully crowded over there on the isle of Manhattan last night,

but it was totally worth it if you took the time to peel people off the wall and take a gander at the art (pardon me Martha, mind the elbows, Elbow-toe). The show has the goal of drawing connections between the processes and techniques employed by well known names from the 70’s/80’s and the emerging crop of wild-eyed beasts today. Shockingly, the similarities were readily apparent, and that was somehow reassuring in a crazy mixed up world like ours. …Not to mention that this show brings you into the backroom, the studio, the cramped apartment, to see the doodlings, the lists, sketches, and planning that artists employ when they first conceive of their pieces. This is an educational show, and a kindly revelation.

There seemed like a hundred pieces or more – we show only a smattering here; all courtesy Anonymous Gallery.

[svgallery name=”Piece_Process_Anonymous”]

Anonymous Gallery

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The Color Evangelism of Chor Boogie


And so we look to the new year with this in mind, and we are glad to share with you thoughts and work from a brother on the left coast who is incorporating romanticism, classicism, fine art, pop, and graffiti elements into his spray painted opus. This globe trotter is on our radar and hasn’t made it to BKLN yet, but when he does, we’ll find a nice wall for him.

Chor Boogie (image courtesy Chor Boogie)

Chor Boogie (image courtesy Chor Boogie)

* Chor Boogie

Chor Boogie’s Site

Project One Gallery

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Images of the Week 12.14.08

(Anera, ELC) (photo Jaime Rojo)
(Anera, ELC) (photo Jaime Rojo)

You leerin' at me?  (Bortusk Leer) (photo Jaime Rojo)
You leerin’ at Me?  (Bortusk Leer)  (photo Jaime Rojo)

Look what washed up on Brighton Beach  (Elisha Vs. Billi) (photo Jaime Rojo)
Look what washed up on Brighton Beach  (Elisha Vs. Billi) (photo Jaime Rojo)

Moving to a 5th floor walkup  (Elbow-Toe)  (photo Jaime Rojo)
Moving to a 5th floor walkup (Elbow-Toe) (photo Jaime Rojo)

Adorns the construction site AND cleans the air!  (Mosstika)  (photo Jaime Rojo)
Adorns the construction site AND cleans the air! (Mosstika) (photo Jaime Rojo)

Hey Mister, you got the time?  (nightlady) (photo Jaime rojo)
Hey Mister, you got the time? (nightlady) (photo Jaime rojo)
bring me your tired your poor your huddled masses yearning to be free

Bring me your tired, your poor, your Virgin of Quadalupe (N.Y.D.F.) (photo Jaime Rojo)

And the winner of the ING Trash Marathon is... (photo Jaime Rojo)
And the winner of the ING Trash Marathon is… (photo Jaime Rojo)

Beautiful Bouquet (shin shin) (photo Jaime Rojo)
Beautiful Bouquet (shin shin) (photo Jaime Rojo)

Grate Boxes!  (Aakash) (photo Jaime Rojo)
Grate Boxes! (Aakash Nihlani) (photo Jaime Rojo)

I can't do a THING with it  (Theo)  (photo Jaime Rojo)
I can’t do a THING with it (Theo)  (photo Jaime Rojo)
Fan of Minimalism   (photo Jaime Rojo)

Fan of Minimalism (photo Jaime Rojo)

Postcard from the edge  (wish you were) (photo Jaime Rojo)

Postcard from the edge (bluetar) (photo Jaime Rojo)

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“Up on the roof countin’ pigeons” – Chris Stain at Carmichael (CA)

‘Up on the roof countin’ pigeons’

A solo exhibition of new work by Chris Stain
Carmichael Gallery of Contemporary Art is proud to present Up on the roof countin’ pigeons, the first West Coast solo exhibition of work by Baltimore artist Chris Stain. Artwork featured in the exhibition will include stencil, spraypaint and mixed media on metal and found objects.

For Up on the roof countin’ pigeons, Chris Stain will transform the gallery into a NYC rooftop scene, complete with pigeon coop and live jazz music. The enigmatic stencil portraits integrated into the large-scale installation pierce the gaze of viewers and offer a unique perspective of contemporary inner city life.

Cries of the Ghetto (copyright Chris Stain)

Cries of the Ghetto (copyright Chris Stain)

“My work explores the emotional and physical struggle of growing up in an urban environment. Through hand-cut stencils and installations made from found materials I hope to inspire compassion for the often overlooked individuals of society.” – Chris Stain

Preview reception: Thursday, February 5th 2009 / 7.00pm – 10.00pm
Exhibition Dates: February 6th – February 26th 2009

Carmichael Gallery of Contemporary Art
1257 N. La Brea Avenue
West Hollywood CA 90038

Chris Stain’s Website

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In the News –

Recession Culture: Skip Museums For Brooklyn’s Street Art

Have you tried to go to a blue-chip museum recently? 20 buckaroos folks, unless you are a museum member or are employed by a corporate contributor, or you borrow your sister’s college ID and put on a wig. Of course, it’s worth it… you just have to skip going out for dinner afterward… unless it’s for a couple of slices and a soda, and who doesn’t love that?

So Brendan Spiegel at has another suggestion…assume the streets of Brooklyn are your personal museum. And you can still have a slice of pizza while you’re at it. Click here for the story.

A Rolling Colorful Caliope of Fun (R.Robots) (photo courtesy
A Rolling Colorful Caliope of Fun (R.Robots) (photo courtesy

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Quick Peek at the Junk Store


If you see a C215 stencil on the street, it’s usually one color.  For this show he says that he wanted to use the opportunity that being inside a safe space affords – namely time to develop the piece, to add dimension through color.  The Junk Store is eclectic in it’s variety, and has a sense of playfulness, despite some of the unvarnished subject matter.

Some of these items you’ll find in a junk store, but he has completely converted them; a puzzle, a chair, a medicine cabinet, a suitcase, a gas station sign, each is retained and transformed. The sage depictions of people and animals in his portraiture style, the complexity of the urban street scenes, at once gloomy in content and somehow glib in coloring…it’s all quite thoughtful. And the employing of stencil work, you may even call it masterful.

C215 from Junk Store at Ad Hoc (photo C.Damage)

C215 from Junk Store at Ad Hoc (photo C.Damage)

C215 Junkstore at Ad Hoc (photo C.Damage)

C215 Junkstore at Ad Hoc (photo C.Damage)

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C.Damage & the Bear Dude on the Brooklyn Block

C.Damage & the Bear Dude on the Brooklyn Block

You’ve seen him, sometimes in a vest and tie, sometimes with polkadot pajamas, a fireman’s uniform, or a formal tuxedo;

The bear dude is on stickers all over the place. At first C.Damage was pretty quiet and maybe a little reserved, like the bear, but with time and practice the style quotient has evolved and now the real style is taking off.

Coming up this Friday at Ad Hoc you can see a new wood block of this bear at the Brooklyn Block Party, a strong show concentrating on one specific technique really popular among many Brooklyn street artists right now.

The First Generation (photo C.Damage)

The First Generation (photo C.Damage)

Brooklyn Street Art: When was this little bear Dude born?

C.Damage: He was born in Chicago, around 2004. He went through many transformations in his process to becoming the bear you see today. For a long time, he didn’t have feet! I couldn’t figure out what his lower half looked like, so he was a waist-up character. But he’s finally comfortable with himself.

Brooklyn Street Art: What is this bear saying?

C.Damage: The conversations he has with other people are usually private. Every once in a while, I’ll overhear someone say positive things (about the bear) – that is, that it makes them feel good. I am more concerned with eliciting a response than the type of response. Some people like him, some people might not like him. But on the whole I think he’s a pretty likable character. He’s a jokester – he doesn’t take himself too seriously.

I'm a real big celebrity. I'm this megastar. (photo C.Damage)

I’m a real big celebrity. I’m this megastar. (photo C.Damage)

Brooklyn Street Art: One time in Williamsburg I saw one of your bears in Hasidic garb. Does Mr. Bear like costumes?

C.Damage: Now that he’s comfortable with himself, he’s been playing around with different personas. I think the first costume he ever put on was a viking hat and giant clock chain as Flava Flav. He also likes to wear t-shirts – the “I love NY” one is his favorite – and suits. And there are usually holiday versions – Santa, a pilgrim, a mummy, Uncle Sam, the Easter Bunny. There are a lot of variations. Some of them last longer than others. There’s some one-of-a-kinds up out there too.

Brooklyn Street Art: Now that cold weather is settling in over Brooklyn, will he be hibernating or looking for warmer climates?

C.Damage: He’ll still be around to face the New York winter, but he is also taking a trip to Los Angeles to spend January 9 to February 6 at the From The Streets of Brooklyn show at thinkspace gallery. The show is curated by Ad Hoc Art in Brooklyn. It’s a pretty amazing way to start the new year, after wrapping up 2008 with the Brooklyn Block Party at Ad Hoc Art.

Brooklyn Street Art: The work that you are showing at Ad Hoc is definitely your style, but it’s different from the stickers and paintings that people know you for. Have you made blocks much in the past?

Bear-bot Army (photo C.Damage)

Bear-bot Army (photo C.Damage)

C.Damage: Yeah, I’ve done small block cuts for stickers in the past, which is how I got into this show, but doing a larger print was definitely new. This was a completely different scale for me, which is funny because if you look at the show, the size of the other artists work blows my piece away. I’m not known for my print work, or for doing giant prints for wheat pastes, so people might not be expecting to see me in this show. But when people see it, they’ll make the connection to my stickers and paintings. I think it’s a good new direction for my work, but not too far from where I was before.

C.Damage displayed a new range of approaches at the Brooklyn Street Art party in May '08 (photo C.Damage)

C.Damage displayed a new range of approaches at the Brooklyn Street Art party in May ’08 (photo C. Damage)

Brooklyn Street Art: How did you get to this point and how does it fit your artistic style?

I have been putting up work for a few years, mostly unnoticed, but somewhat consistently. I think I got to this point by just doing my thing, regardless of other people’s opinions or popular trends. I have a long way to go until I get to where I want to be, with solo shows and a more complete body of work. But I think I’ll get there through persistence. There’s no time limit for me to get there, so I’m just enjoying the ride.

Ho! (photo C.Damage)

Ho! (photo C.Damage)

Brooklyn Street Art: Hmmm. Beary interesting. What’s up for 2009 for C. Damage?

Well, 2009 starts with the From the Streets of Brooklyn show in L.A. and a cool show I’m in around Valentine’s Day that is still coming together. I think some of my work will be published in the near future too; not too long ago, I had the pleasure of talking with Martha Cooper, and she took some great photos of some of my stickers that will be shown in her next book, released soon. I’m doing a few more blocks for prints to work on my style, so maybe you’ll see some prints up in the street at some point. Beyond that, I’m not sure what’s next, but I’ll take it as it comes.

C.Damage’s Flickr Site

Check out C.Damage’s new block print as well as those of many others at the Brooklyn Block Party this Friday at Ad Hoc.

“Brooklyn Block Party”

Richard Mock, Swoon, David Ellis, Mike Houston, Martin Mazorra, Dennis McNett,

Judith Supine, Elbowtoe, Gaia, c.damage & Imminent Disaster

December 12th – January 4th 2009

Opening Reception: Friday, December 12th, 7-10pm

An exhibition of original hand cut blocks, both wood and lino, along with the prints pulled from each block.

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C215 Invites You to His Junk Store

What’s that noise over by the vinyl albums of Jackson 5 and Petula Clarke?

Did you hear something? Who’s rummaging around by the board games… next to the one-eyed mannequin wearing the fox-collared poncho…. Oops! There he is, it’s C215 !

When you get to the Brooklyn Block Party at Ad Hoc Gallery this week, make sure you head out back to the new Project Room, um… Junk Store.

Luna Park, friend of Brooklyn Street Art, reports from the scene;
“Since arriving late last week, c215 has spent hours adding the final touches to the Ad Hoc Gallery’s Project Room for this, his first US solo show.

A culmination of over two months of hard work, “junk store” is a feast for the eyes. All of his usual themes are represented from his travels around the world, from portraits of friends, family and the homeless, to images of automobiles and animals.

Unlike his work for the street, his gallery work explodes with layers of color and extraordinary attention to detail. Prepare to be impressed.”

They're so alert at night!  (C215)  (photo Luna Park)
They’re So Alert at Night! (C215) (photo Luna Park)

Something (C215) (photo Luna Park)
Milieu de la Rue (C215) (photo Luna Park)

C215 site

Luna Park Flickr

Junk Store Info

Ad Hoc Gallery

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Brother Can You Spare a Wheat-Paste Virtuoso?

Or Two?

Okay, sorry to gush. Armsrock pounced into ThinkSpace a few days ago and immediately started flowing with the free hand and the human condition, deftly rendering an apprehended chap in handcuffs.

Doing it from Memory (Armsrock) (photo ThinkSpace)
Doing it from Memory (Armsrock) (photo ThinkSpace)

After a dust-bowl migration in his old jalopy across the obamanation, Elbow-Toe has arrived with his bended cast of curious paper friends.

"Brother Can You Spare a Dime" (Elbow-Toe)  (photo ThinkSpace)
Brother Can You Spare an Upright Piano? (Elbow-Toe) (photo ThinkSpace)

One of the ThinkSpace founders, Andrew Hosner, is a bit bowled over; “Get ready to be in awe. Both ARMSROCK and ELBOW-TOE have taken their work to another level, both in terms of size and presentation, and skill and vision. A visual overload awaits.”

The show opens this Friday. More details HERE.




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