June 2011

Dan Witz’ Mind: A Cabinet of Natural and Unatural Curiosities

Anyone on the subway this morning knows what it is like to be mashed together with strangers and attitudes, a roiling mass of boobs and butts and sunglasses on the forehead, Rhiannon on the headphones next to you on the right, death metal on your left, and your upper arm is not as strong as you thought while you grab for something on the ceiling to hold onto. It’s a half sleeping mosh pit of commuters, with people who have just applied nice smelling things, but this ladies bag is still jammed into your back while you are pressing your already wrinkled summer pants against a messengers bike.  Here’s an opportunity right in front of me; Might as well smash the lights and crank up the metal and have some Subwaypalooza, people! Or just go see the new Dan Witz show at Jonathan Levine Gallery tonight, that’ll be fun too.

brooklyn-street-art-dan-witz-jaime-rojo-06-11-web-1 Dan Witz “In Plain View” (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn based Street Artist and fine artist Dan Witz has been making art “In Plain View” as he likes to say it, for over 30 years. Throughout his prolific career he has been fearless in his exploration of art and the subjects that he likes to approach. He can paint beautiful photo-realistic canvases of still life scenes and humans in motion with the same ease as murky tormented scenes behind grimy windows and fragile and ethereal humming birds in flight or a lone tiny skate boarder gliding across a rusted metal wall. Pairing his study of light, his classically trained technique, and an enduring punk rock attitude, Witz’s body of work often takes it where you haven’t gone, and might be afraid to.


Dan Witz “In Plain View” (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz “In Plain View” (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Mr. Witz’s new book, “In Plain View”, shows how in a span of 30 years he has pushed psychological limits with triggers in your periphery, a pursuit of interactive art with prickly engaging relevance in the public, if the public slows down and sees it. A storyteller out in the open, you’ll stop dead in your tracks when Witz hits you, commanding you to stay there until you can figure out what the hell that is, and ponder why is it there. What’s the story behind this faux door with two humans passionately kissing in the dark? Or this figure behind the wire crossed window; is she in pain? Is he dead? Is this real?

Dan’s solo show “Mosh Pits, Human and Otherwise” is opening tonight at the Jonathan Levine Gallery.


Dan Witz “In Plain View” (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz “In Plain View” (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz “In Plain View” (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz “In Plain View” This is the limited edition version of the book with a hand painted cover (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz Detail of his piece for this year Welling Court. You can see the full piece  here (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz. Street installation from 2009 (still there in plain view)  (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz “Mosh Pits, Human and Otherwise” at the Jonathan Levine Gallery  (photo © courtesy of the artist)

Opening Reception June 30, 2011
6 to 8 pm

Jonathan LeVine Gallery
529 West 20th Street, 9th floor
New York, NY 10011


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Mondo Pop Gallery Presents: “Street Parade” (Rome, Italy)

Mondo Pop

Summer special group show dal 7 al 31 Luglio


giovedì 7 luglio H 19.00

con aperitivo e DJset


Street Parade

La Street Art accessibile che entra in galleria

Dal 7 al 31 luglio 2011  MondoPOP International Gallery passa in rassegna alcuni dei migliori lavori di Street Art degli ultimi anni, a prezzi riveduti. Mentre la street art cresce a quotazioni inaccessibili MondoPOP presenta una mostra in cui le migliori firme italiane si possono comprare oltre che ammirare!

Una nuova tappa dello Urban Superstar Project, evento curatoriale e  mediatico consolidato nella realtà artistica nazionale iniziato al Museo MADRE di Napoli nel 2009, riconfermaro nel 2010 e ora itinerante.

Un viaggio nell’universo duro e puro dell’arte urbana per ritrovare le origini di una forma espressiva che rivendica origini semplici nonostante il trend mainstream.

Artisti italiani e internazionali che danno un contributo tangibile alla definizione di New Art, con opere in mostra a prezzi accessibili.

L’opportunità di comprare opere originali per tutti i fan della corrente.

Nuovi lavori di promettenti street artist per mantenere un filo conduttore con la strada.

La migliore chance dell’estate per toccare la Street Art con mano.

Come di rito a MondoPOP si festeggerà l’opening della mostra sabato 7 luglio dalle 19 con musica e aperitvo, dj set.


Allegra Corbo, Bigfoot, Becca, Buff Monster,  Diavù , Boris Hoppek, Camilla Falsini, Diamond, El Gato Chimney, Fupete, Giò Pistone, Ian Stevenson, Jeremy Fish,

Mr Klevra, Mr Wany, Nicola Alessandrini, Odö, Scarful, Sone, Sten&Lex, 100Taur, 999, #

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Brooklyn Bodega Presents: “Under the Influence” Co-curated by Royce Bannon and Alex Emmart (Brooklyn, NY)

Under the Influence

Celebrating Hip-Hop’s Impact on the Arts
Brooklyn Bodega presents “Under The Influence,” the first curated art event to be held in conjunction with the 2011 Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival. Opening Tuesday, July 12th as part of the Festival’s week-long programming at The powerHouse Arena, 37 Main Street, Brooklyn, NY; the exhibit will celebrate the influence Hip-Hop has had for multiple generations within the artistic community.
“The idea is to pay tribute to the culture and bring together artists who have something special in common – an influence, a back-story, a motivation. Hip-Hop wouldn’t have become the same  movement without the influence of the graffiti writers who created an aesthetic for a new generation. The artists in this show prove that the influence of the golden era keeps its roots and continues to inspire new creations. The influence is powerful and this show brings together both the pioneers and a new wave of artistic progression.”- Corrie Zaccaria, Event Captain, The Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival

Artwork on view during “Under The Influence” has been curated by Royce Bannon and Alex Emmart of Mighty Tanaka Gallery. We are also excited to announce Gawker Artists as media partners of “Under The Influence.” The opening night festivities include a public reception with refreshments provided by Brooklyn Brewery and music from a special guest DJ. A live music performance and more featured artists will be announced soon!

Featured inthe Show:
Photographs from Back in the Days Remix: 10thAnniversary Edition – Book Signing
Upon its first publication in 2001, Back In The Days by Jamel Shabazz became an instant classic.  This seminal and iconic title has been inspiring a decade-long, international revival in old-school Hip-Hop style, music and culture. Appearing alongside photographs from the book, Shabazz will be on-hand to sign copies of the limited-printing, tenth-anniversary edition of Back in the Days Remix. It includes a new edit with over 30 never-before-published photographs, a new essay, an interview with Shabazz and deluxe cloth binding.
Contributing Artists – Second Floor Gallery
212 Magazine, 907 Crew (UFO, SADU, DROID, Tony Bones, OZE 108 and GEN II), Ader, Ak5, Alice Mizrachi, Avoid, Cash4, Darkclouds, Destroy & Rebuild, Don Morris, Endless Love Crew (Royce Bannon,Matt Siren, Celso, Infinity, Abe Lincoln Jr), Ellis G, Eric Jordan, Jesus Saves, Joe Conzo, John Brenner,  KA, Keely, Kosbe, Martha Cooper, Miguel Ovalle, Mike Screiber, Moody, Pesu, Robots Will Kill, Rodeo, The Me Nobody Knows, Toofly, Tuxedo, URNewYork and Vanessa Chew + more TBA.
What: “Under The Influence” Art Event
When: Opening BHF ’11 Reception: Tuesday, July 12, 6:00 – 10:00PM
Exhibit Dates: Wednesday, July 13 – Sunday, August 7, 2011
Where: The powerHouse Arena, 37 Main Street, Brooklyn, NY
Who: Photographs from Back in the Days Remix: 10th Anniversary Edition. Gallery showing of influential artists.
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Neon Signs, Shiny Balloons, and Brutality : Patrick Martinez In Studio

LA artist Patrick Martinez depicts urban life with unflinching stories that happen in the real world where he lives. We like to say, “Mine the diamonds in your own back yard”, and that is exactly what Patrick does by incorporating into his art without apologies what he sees where he goes.  Using symbols of authority, militarism, commercialism and their brutal or humorous intersection, men play roles of protagonist and antagonist on a stage where murky gray municipal Greek architecture surrounds strip malls, plantations, and supermarket parking lots.

brooklyn_street-art-Patrick Martinez-todd-Mazer-13-webPatrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

With flexibility of medium, he constructs the world with symbols and materials and snatches of conversations on the street. Chaotic pileups of people at cross purposes are mingled with free floating graffiti tags in the air. Cool bright neon glows and recalls liquor stores, pawn shops, and bullet proof glass – words are pulled out of context and combined with slogans. Insistently shiny helium filled happiness, near bursting with optimism, becomes a metaphor for aspiration –  heart shaped balloons pulling at their strings to fly upward; and of dreams brutally dashed as they are stomped underfoot or caught in the crossfire. Brutality and storewide sales, when paired, can evoke a certain sunny sarcastic fascism in a showman’s hands, but Martinez prefers commentating on the life in the streets without that romanticism or coy finish.

Here are some in studio images from a visit to Patrick by photographer and BSA contributor Todd Mazer.

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

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Patrick Martinez (photo © Todd Mazer)

For more on Patrick Martinez art click below:


For more on Todd Mazer Photography click below:


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The Market Place Gallery in Collaboration with Brooklyn Art Collective and M.a.n.y. Present: “Town And Country” (Manhattan, NY)

Town and Country

Curated by Jason Patrick Voegele of Republic Worldwide, Samson Contompasis of The Marketplace Gallery, Keith Schweitzer of M.A.N.Y. and Tyler Wriston of The B.A.C.
Hosted by 320 Studios at 320 West 37th Street, 14th Floor
June 28 – June 30, 2011
6 to Midnight with VIP After Party
Concept by Jason Patrick Voegele

Much of what we know and how we learn comes through the study of explicit or subtle comparisons and contrasts. Meaningful opportunities for these comparative studies invite us into a more explicit and intentional approach that can both broaden our understanding of contemporary American art and help us draw connections and distinctions between the studio practices and conceptual intentions of today’s American Artist.

Produced and developed by four of New York State’s premiere curatorial teams, Town & Country presents just such an opportunity.

Much like the rest of the western world, our press, politics, and creative arts thrive on the institutions we have erected to illuminate our differences. We are often reduced to the divisive labels of righteous and heretical, pious and secular, liberal and conservative, formal and conceptual, urban and rural. Dressed up in the costume of duality it appears that we are a bisected people from the fundamentals to our personal tastes. This exhibition challenges those preconceived notions and offers a unique window into the collaborative state of American art. As a people, our founding fathers had faith in the principals of open dialogue, freedom of expression and the multiplicity of our intellectual and creative capacity to bind various philosophies into one singular union. As an exhibition, Town & Country celebrates these great strengths and offers up a chance to draw attention to the ties that bind us as a great creative culture wherever we are from. Through this lens, Town & Country proposes a new vision of American art reinterpreted for a new generation.

On June 28th through June 30th at 320 West 37th Street in New York City, Republic Worldwide, The Marketplace Gallery, Keith Schweitzer (M.A.N.Y.), and The Brooklyn Art Collective invite you to join the discussion and stoke the fires of debate as we present Town & Country: the very best of contemporary American art. Artists include: Scott Michael Ackerman, Doug Auld, Paul Brainard, White Cocoa, Hannah Cole, Annika Conner, Helen Dennis, Eric Diehl, Ira Eduardovna, Tara de la Garza, Charles Koegel, Elizabeth Livingston, Frodo Mikkelsen, OLEK, Sirikul Pattachote, Patrick Porter, Leon Reid IV, Julia Samuels, Tom Sanford, Chris Stain, Veng, Emma Wasielke, and Fedele Spadafora.

Much appreciation to John Stavros from 320 Studios.

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Buxtons Bring “Welling Court 2” to Queens, Artists and Scooters in Tow

Street Art in the Community, Creating Community. Again.

brooklyn-street-art-john-ahearn-jaime-rojo-welling-court-2011-ad-hoc-art-06-11-web-32John Ahearn (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ad Hoc Art “brought it” for the second year to Queens and at Welling Court with a collection of Street Artists and local families hanging out and painting the neighborhood. The tireless Alison and Garrison Buxton invited 40 or 50 of their closest friends with aerosol to take part over a two day period to transform the atmosphere in this neighborhood which doesn’t get much attention.  The lineup includes artists who are pioneers in the graffiti and Street Art game who create alongside emerging talent. The styles vary, but the sentiments of connectedness and community are consistent throughout.


John Ahearn with his assistant Kevin with his friend and model Karlee, daughter of his good friend Otto. Karlee and Otto posed for the sculpture to the right. John had planned a live casting with Karlee later in the day but we couldn’t stay to witness it.  (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Leon Reid installing his sculpture (photo © Jaime Rojo)

In this extensive collection of photos BSA gives you artists hard at work and hard at play with a little help from their friends. A traditional community mural format where everyone has their own slab to cover in their own style, Welling Court also engages the kids in the neighborhood, who frequently get to try their hand at painting or otherwise assisting the artists.


Leon Reid (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The day’s proceedings are part plastic art and part performance art as the artists often stop painting to interact with fans, inquisitors, Street Art aficionados and their fellow artists. Its part summer camp and part family reunion with the neighbors getting out the BBQ grill and setting up tables in the street while artists from around the globe are reconnecting and telling long tales and kids on scooters and skateboards weave in and out of the clusters of cans everywhere. With the abundance of homemade food and a variety of  music playing at high volume the streets are alive and there’s nothing else you’d want to do on day like this.


Debuting a new secret doorway, Mr. Dan Witz (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz (photo © Jaime Rojo)

John Ahearn is a pioneer in the area of public art known for making sculptures with local people posing as models. His technique of live casting requires the model to sit while John creates a cast of them in plaster. As far back as the mid 1970s Mr. Ahearn’s tributes to his neighbors have been seen affixed to many walls throughout the Bronx. Sited as an important part of the development of the Street Art scene Ahearn’s work has also traveled to private collections of prominent and noted art collectors and art institutions.

Brooklyn Street Art spoke with Mr. Ahearn and asked him about participating in this open venue and how he felt doing his live casting in Queens. He responded with excitement about the word “live”.

“You used the word very properly. I feel alive today. I feel alive and I just turned 60 two weeks ago and I feel this is where my roots are. Right in the sidewalk, doing casting, particularly aimed at little children. We are going to do a piece that involves a child. She is a friend of mine from way back and we are expecting to have a crowd of kids here and it is going to be fun,” said Ahearn.


Ezra Li Eismont and Bunnie Reiss bring a fanstastical and folksy humor to this very urban setting. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Hmmmm, wonder who lives here. Ezra Li Eismont and Bunnie Reiss. Detail (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Ezra Li Eismont and Bunnie Reiss (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Deeks and El Celso sing a stunning duet. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


El Kamino and Alice Mizrachi murals in process (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Alice Mizrachi at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Always good to get a new view; El Kamino listens to a live critique of his work by local observers. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


El Kamino at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Cern at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


ROA in a tight spot. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Fumero at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Fumero at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)

brooklyn-street-art-jmr-the-wretched-rapture-crew-dave loewenstein-ashley-jane-laird-cecilia-ross-gotta-jaime-rojo-welling-court-2011-ad-hoc-art-06-11-web

JMR on the left and The Wretched Rapture Crew: Dave Loewenstein, Ashley Jane Laird and Cecilia Ross-Gotta (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Too Fly almost completed mural with Chor Boogie to the right (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Too Fly’s original sketch. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Ani, Too Fly’s friend helping out with a little pink. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Zam at work on a very large roach. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Zam (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Zam’s roach doesn’t make Too Fly too happy. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Chris Stain and Billy Mode mural in process (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Chris Stain and Billy Mode detail shot (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Jesse Jones to the left and Sinned to the right at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Joe Iurato at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Joe Iurato at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Jordan Seiler at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Katie Yamasaki and Caleb Neelon (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Lady Pink at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Overunder at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Pablo Power at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Pablo Power at work (photo © Jaime Rojo)


R. Robots and Victor collaborating on a piece on Victor’s house. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


The original inspiration for R.Robots and Victor. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


R. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Ron English (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Royce Bannon and Matt Siren collab in process (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Royce Bannon and Russell King (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Veng RWK mural in process (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Veng RWK (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Clown Soldier: New Images from His Show “The Human Cannonball”

Clown Soldier’s “The Human Cannonball” Show in Chicago opened this Friday at The Pawn Works Gallery. Here’s a dazzling circus of images that illustrate the collage based art that Clown Soldier holds closest.


Clown Soldier (image © courtesy of the artist)

When the huge Clown Soldier wheat-paste first appeared on the street a about a year and a half ago (see Images of the Week 01.17.10),  few people understood that it was the result of a long process of selecting elements, combining, and re-combining to reach a sense of balance – Most of us just took it at clown-face value. Here are some images from the new show and a few behind the scenes pics for context.


Clown Soldier (image © courtesy of the artist)

Brooklyn Street Art: So what do you do, how do you make these, what is the process?
Clown Soldier:
I start with collage. I cut up thousands and thousands of pieces of imagery until something works. What’s great about collage is you come with things that you wouldn’t come up with if you were drawing.  So you cut up all these fragments, you know – it’s inspired by (William) Burroughs and it goes back to Picasso right? Anyway that process, you cut up these things and you put them together and not in a million years I would put these things together or come up with… so when I find this gem, this absurd thing.

Read more from his first public interview and studio visit here:

A New Clown Comes to Town : Clown Soldier in Studio http://www.brooklynstreetart.com/theblog/?p=18922

Clown Soldier is participating this August in the BSA presented “Street Art Saved My Life” 39 New York Stories” show in Los Angeles.


Clown Soldier (image © courtesy of the artist)


Clown Soldier (image © courtesy of the artist)


Clown Soldier “Billy Craven Monarchy” (image © courtesy of the artist)


Clown Soldier (image © courtesy of the artist)


Clown Soldier “In God We Trust” (image © courtesy of the artist)


Clown Soldier (image © courtesy of the artist)

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