Germany

IBUG 2012: Festival of Urban Art and Culture (Glauchau, Germany)

IBUG 2012

IBUg 2012 – Festival of urban art and culture in GermanyThe IBUg – the famous festival of urban art and culture in Germany – goes into its seventh edition this year. From 24th August on more than 70 artists from eight countries will transform a former slaughterhouse in the West Saxon city of Glauchau during a week-long creative phase into a work of art by graffiti, street art, urban art installations and performances. Numerous national and international artists like Ta55o (Germany), Chromeo (Switzerland), Flamat (Germany), Help (Germany), Hifi (Germany), Koala (Switzerland), Loomit (Germany), Okle74 (Germany), Royal TS (Germany), Zone56 (Germany), Amin (France), Andy K (Germany), Bue the warrior (Belgium), Caparso (Germany), Etam (Poland), Johannes Mundinger (Germany), Lean Frizzera (Argentinia), Martin Ron (Argentinia), Quintessenz Creation (Germany), Rebelzer (Germany), Remi Rough (England), SatOne (Italy) or Threehouse (Germany) have announced to IBUg 2012.

The results are presented to the public during a festival of urban art and culture from 31st August to 2nd September. Among the highlights of the weekend are the lectures by Göttingen based artist Bond about the graffiti culture in southeast asia and by Manuel Gerullis, who talks about the event „Meeting of Styles“. And on Saturday night the traditional IBUg party invites to celebrate and dance to hip-hop and electronic beats with DJ Showi (Stuttgart), DefZone (illcandevilz/IBUg), Okle (illcandevilz/IBUg), Franz! (Muna, http://www.muna.de/), Konglomerat (Weimar, www.facebook.com/daskonglomerat) and Mopedgang (Glauchau, www.mopedgang.de) as well as visuals by MXZEHN (Weimar).
The side program also offers a IBUg pub which grants an insight view into the work of the artist during the creative phase, an urban art market including photographs by Conny Heimer from the last five years of IBUg, t-shirts, bags as well as works of the IBUg-artist, a film program about urban art and urban culture and an IBUg fashion show.
For more information click here http://www.ibug-art.de/
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Pulling Strings in Berlin; “Heinrich” The Public Marionette

“All of us are like marionettes,” says Ben, “Somebody pulls our strings and we move.”

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © V & G)

Various and Gould can’t be sure that their own strings didn’t get pulled last week when they installed on the street a life-sized replica of one half of this German Street Art duo. Hanging from the beams below a train station in Berlin-Kreuzberg, the cardboard puppet named “Heinrich” had gone on display two or three times indoors before but the artists wanted to see how he would be received by passersby in the public sphere.

“Before we were even done installing people showed up and started to play intuitively with it by pulling the strings,” they told us as they described their surprise at what would become a 6-day experience.

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Studio Nura)

 

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Studio Nura)

People from all walks of life and ages took interest in this naked man hanging out near the bicycles, and many took his movements into their own hands. The artists visited the site regularly to observe the interactions, and often found that a mirroring of movements, a sort of dance, took place. “Not only was the marionette being moved but also the people moved themselves. Some just pulled  one of the chords briefly, while others would get totally into it, grabbing the strings with both of their hands, experimenting with various sequences of movements.” Their lifeless creation somehow brought the street to life, and vice versa.

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Studio Nura)

Sometimes there was damage to Heinrich that they needed to repair when visiting him first thing in the morning, and he suffered one violent episode that left his arms dangling by themselves from the hooks in the ceiling above. But he also gained a protective crew of friends who call this area home, including the 40-ish slim musician named Ben with a bandaged hand of his own. Drinking coffee or beer with his buddies all day, Ben took on a protective air toward the puppet, instructing people how to use the strings. To their amazement, the artists often found that their creation had been repaired; a torn-off foot was reattached with a rubber band and a shoulder joint was rejuvenated with an empty cigarette box and some adhesive tape.

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © V & G)

What began as a fun experiment with a puppet that they were ready to part with eventually transformed into a bonding experience they had not predicted. Watching individuals interact with the strings became like poetry. “It looked like two marionettes facing each other with both being joined by the same chords,” they say. Finally one day Various and Gould found that Heinrich had been cut down from his strings and taken away, perhaps to someone’s home.

For their experience, they cannot help but think of the people they met, and what Ben said about everyone being a marionette. Public artists know of course that public art will always be subject to the whims of the public. What they didn’t expect was to find that their puppet project might have had some heart strings attached to it.

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © V & G)

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Lucky Cat)

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Lucky Cat)

Ben and Heinrich, Various & Gould  (photo © Various and Gould)

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Lucky Cat)

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Lucky Cat)

Various & Gould “Heinrich” (photo © Studio Nura)

The artists wish to thank Lucky Cat and Studio Nura for their photography, support and help with this project.

“Heinrich”, a life-sized marionette by Various & Gould
Installed at Goerlitzer Bahnhof in Berlin-Kreuzberg on the 10th of July, 2012.

This article is also published on The Huffington Post

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Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!

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STROKE Urban Art Fair 2012 03 – 06 May (Munich, Germany)

Stroke

Herakut (photo © courtesy of Stroke)

“I’ve wandered around a lot of art galleries thinking: I could have done that, so it seemed only right that I should try. These galleries are just trophy cabinets for a handful of millionaires. The public never has any real say in what art they see.” (Banksy)
For the first time in human history, the majority of the earth’s population is living in urban residential areas. The urban environment and the corresponding lifestyle can be counted amongst the fundamental sources of inspiration for contemporary culture. The historical revolution of visual forms of expression, in which the designs of the everyday streetscape, with its graffiti, tags, tattoos, advertising or graphic design found their sustenance, define the progression of
contemporary art. The urban environment as the literal and metaphorical platform for this development inspires and presents the artists and their work. The URBAN ART FAIR works as a parallel universe to the inflated classical art market of the “rich and beautiful”, driven by aggressive investment strategies, auction houses and the greed for spectacular maximum prices. The goal is to establish an art-entry-market for both: the artist (gallery) and the interested buyer.
Passion and dedication are still more important than business plans and projections. Unbeatable participation costs combined with professional presentation and an uninterrupted passion for the art – this is where we see the starting point fort he world’s first and only URBAN ART FAIR. During the last decade, no other German art show can compete regarding growth and media interest.
Click here for further information regarding Stroke Urban Art Fair.
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Various and Gould Perform “Guest Work” on the Street in Istanbul

The German Street Art Duo and “Berlistanbul”

A cobalt blue streak sweeps through a narrow street in Istanbul as Various and Gould don fluorescent orange work vests and push brooms with a purpose. The lunchtime crowd gathers a few steps back and to the sides to witness a remarkable cloud of ultra-marine pigment forming a wake behind the two German Street Artists as they perform their new installation focusing on work and workers.

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

Simply by changing the color of the dirt, the effect of an everyday act by municipal workers is effectively transformed, if not understood. 34 kilos of non-toxic blue pushed up a street with confidence and industry by two people wearing an official-looking logo on their uniforms does cause confusion. “What happened? Did someone die?” asks a spectator.  No, they are assured, it is an art performance – an explanation that calms most but not all, including restaurant owners here in this eastside tourist district of “Beyoğlu” while their dining guests look curiously with mouths agape.

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

“Zu Gast Arbeit”, loosely translated as “guest work”, is the name of the piece by Various and Gould and like many of their wheat-pastes on streets in cities around the world, it is focused on the topic of “work”.  In this part of Istanbul where they are participating in a group show called “Outside In” with eight other Street Artists, V&G talk about the significance of this public act of sweeping and the changing nature of work today, “Work nowadays is becoming increasingly invisible. It is getting harder to grasp and comprehend.” With a hint of the ridiculous their custom “uniform” logo shows their affinity for workers in their home and host city. “On the backs of our orange vests we stenciled the two city emblems merged into each other – on the bottom the shape of Berlin’s familiar television tower and on top the municipal logo of Istanbul. Together it can be read as the symbol for a utopian place called “Berlistanbul”.

So how did this performance go? And why is the topic of work so important to the duo? Various and Gould talked with Brooklyn Street Art to give us a better understanding of “Zu Gast Arbeit”.

Brooklyn Street Art: Your Street Art work often focuses on themes related to work and workers. While technological changes have caused many jobs to evaporate, the streets don’t clean themselves, do they? The world still depends on workers, right?
Various and Gould: Yes, of course the world depends on workers. In many areas migrants do mainly these physically exhausting and badly paid jobs. Physical labor isn’t very well respected and although this work is important, we hardly say “Thank You”! Also there ARE machines that clean the streets and replace the jobs of a lot of people.

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

Brooklyn Street Art: Are you drawing attention to the act of physical labor, or to the life of the worker?
Various and Gould:It has a lot to do with the physical labor of a worker and also with the role of a worker. The monotonous repetition of the sweeping movement is somehow neutral and peaceful. The street cleaner is a familiar image to the residents and is normally not much noticed. He is somewhat official, as he is hired and paid by the city, but he is also perceived as low-grade.

It’s just the little shift of a color in the performance that adds a different meaning to the act of sweeping and draws attention to it. The combination of “cleaning” (but actually doing the opposite of it) brought in a breeze of absurdity and senselessness. Art is irrational. And when an idea comes up, it comes from the guts and isn’t much explainable at first.

In the book Momo, by Michael Ende, there is a beautiful scene, where Beppo, the street cleaner, tells Momo that it is important not to look for the end of the long street and the long distance you still have to go, but rather to put your concentration in every step and sweep and breath. Then it is fun and you do your work well and suddenly you reach the end of the street.

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

Brooklyn Street Art: While this blue streak through town is visual, would you say the project is more conceptual in nature?
Various and Gould: Actually it isn’t very different from what we’ve done before: bringing some color to the street … but yes, it is a conceptual work. We chose the medium of a performance very carefully. We knew that every detail matters and each has a certain meaning, so we tried to reduced the elements of the performance and simplify it. It is about a seeing something in a new way and the context plays a big role this performance. If it were performed this way in Berlin it wouldn’t have the same meaning. (But since the element of chance is also part of a performance the perception of your work is unpredictable anyway.)

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

Brooklyn Street Art: What role does a public performance like this play in a community?
Various and Gould:This is hard to say, as we aren’t part of any community in Istanbul! We were guests and tourists. We were a bit afraid of coming to Istanbul with this performance, not knowing the community so well and all the customs – there is always a risk of being called an “Orientalist” – meaning a person who goes somewhere with a Western behavior of superiority.

And as the Turkish-German guest worker issue is as quite delicate, we didn’t know how our performance would be understood and perceived. But we had the feeling the spectators were quite open. Although the performance was meant as a dialogue and contribution it clearly holds the potential of (cultural) misunderstanding and incomprehension.

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

Brooklyn Street Art: Your logo merges the cultures of Berlin and Istanbul. Can you talk about the significance of these two cities to each other and their relationship to work?
Various and Gould: There are quite a few parallels. It seems that Berlin and Istanbul both are very popular as cultural hot spots at the moment. Many young creatives from all over the world are moving there and this is also accompanied by a higher tolerance for differences. For us these two cities are like a gate to a German-Turkish cultural exchange.  In light of the history of Turkish guest workers coming, living and staying in Germany it is time for a merging movement toward each other from both sides.

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

Various & Gould “Zu Gast Arbeit”.  Istanbul, Turkey.  5th of April 2012 (photo © Gülbin Eriş)

“Zu Gast Arbeit” – A performance by Various & Gould

In Istanbul, Turkey on the 5th of April, 2012.
Photos by and copyright of Gülbin Eriş.
With support from: Sinejan Kılıç and Önder Duman
Curator: Sinejan Kılıç

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Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!

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Kraftwerk At MoMA

Stylized Leaders of the Computerized Electronic Revolution at MoMA

First as D.I.Y. experimenters and visionaries, then leaders in a nearly empty field, then as inspiring catalysts for man-machine marriage, Kraftwerk paved the way for millions of musicians, programmers, DJs, rappers, and fans to integrate a mechanized electronic precision into the modern musical oeuvre.  At a time when the youth movement was peacing out and getting high with arena rock and disco, Kraftwerk was turning itself into robots and its vinyl platters were getting play in New York house parties as an ideal futuristic soundtrack to integrate with lyrics, riffs and samples.  With New Wave, House, and Techno music all spawned with those same programmed beats, voices, and influences, now in the 2010s we acknowledge that a wide spectrum of musical categories, recordings, and performances contain a significant part of Kraftwerk’s digital DNA.

 

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A teenager in the early 80s listening to Man Machine and Computer World would have thought that Kraftwerk were geekily impressing each other with their sweeping vision of a future daily existence where people and robots interact via  smart electronic devices and programs. Not only did each year afterward bring us many steps further into their outlandish computerized vision, it may be that they partially ushered it in with their undulating funky precision and robotic wit. And so it is in New York now that “Kraftwerk Week” is blowing away a roomful of people who are holding up their personal glowing rectangles toward the stage at the Museum of Modern Art. Over the course of 8 consecutive nights they appear as slightly human robots to perform one of their albums in it’s entirety, followed by a very satisfying collection of favorites.

The retrospective Kraftwerk 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 brings a vision of the current band members poised before their master controls while 3-D visuals crisply fly into your face with elements of aerospace, rail travel, and the pumping machinations of human propelled progress.  Swelling pulsating vistas are punctuated by text and funnily low-tech robotic movements – all infused with a sense of classical European styling. As pure and total fans we were extremely lucky to have attended one of the performances and we felt like witnesses to an historic event that testified to the influence of 4 decades of experimentation but also displayed a delightfully stellar quality of skill and performance.

Naturally, these photos were shot on our personal hand-held computers.

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kraftwerk. Museum of Modern Art, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!

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From Here To Fame Publishing Present: Arabic Graffiti & Egyptian Street Art in Frankfurt. (Frankfurt, Germany)

From Here to Fame

Arabic Graffiti & Egyptian Street Art in Frankfurt

Graffiti artists from Egypt, Tunisia and Germany will create a street art gallery from 10th of April around the Tutankhamun exhibition hall in Frankfurt. Some of the best known and most active street artists from Egypt will participate, including Aya Tarek, Ammar Abo Bakr and Ganzeer. El Seed, a street artist from Tunisia whose work has influenced graffiti artists around the Arab world, and Andreas von Chrzanowski aka Case from Germany, who recently did murals in Egypt, complete this distinguished line-up.

Friday 13th of April

Opening of the Street Art Gallery

First Friday Egyptian Street Art & Arabic Graffiti
7:00 pm – Midnight

Arabic Graffiti – El Seed & Don Karl present the book and project
8:00 pm – Exhibition Foyer

Street Art of the Egyptian Revolution – Ganzeer & Don Karl
9:00 pm –  Exhibition Foyer
Tutankhamun exhibition hall, Mainzer Landstraße, Güterplatz, 60327 Frankfurt am Main

Since the start of the Arab uprisings the Middle East has seen an unparalleled explosion of graffiti. Many slogans which were later sung by the people on the streets first appeared on walls from Tunisia to Bahrain. Egypt has played a remarkable role in this phenomenon. Even when the army tanks rolled onto Tahrir Square in Cairo, they were immediately adorned with graffiti. Along with people from all walks of life, artists, calligraphers and designers took over the public space. In no time a vital and now globally acclaimed street art scene emerged. Arabic Graffiti is an intercultural project by From Here To Fame that involves artists, activists and academics from various Middle Eastern countries and their diasporas. Started as an art and book project, the recent events in the region have led to an active involvement of many participants in the transforming changes of the region. Events and exhibitions are currently being developed in Tunisia, Egypt, Lebanon, France and Germany.

The project  Arabic Graffiti & Egyptian Street Art is part of the Festival of Egyptian Culture, the program for the exhibition Tutankhamun – His tomb and treasures in Frankfurt.

 

 

 

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Images of the Week: 03.04.12

Our weekly interview with the street, this week including Bronco, Cindy Sherman, Dan Witz, LNY, Miyok, PK, Read, Royce Bannon, Stikman, Swoon, Trojan Horse, Various & Gould, and Who is Charlie?

LNY (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Who is Charlie? (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stikman says go put your records on (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dan Witz was recently in Los Angeles and Daniel LaHoda from LA Freewalls Project took him around to visit some walls. This and the following images are of his series WTF in The Arts District, The Warehouse District and the Manufacturing District. (photo © Dan Witz)

Dan Witz (photo © Dan Witz)

Dan Witz (photo © Dan Witz)

Dan Witz (photo © Dan Witz)

Swoon, Royce Bannon and a Polaroid shot of an amorous couple complete this snap shot of the dialogue on the streets of NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Read (photo © Jaime Rojo)

PK (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Miyok (photo © Jaime Rojo)

German duo Various & Gould spotted this box/crate free standing on the streets of Berlin. The crate was built to protect a very old iron gate from the harsh German winter weather. Then they got thinking… (photo courtesy of © Various & Gould)

Various & Gould. Back at their place they build a horse head with a wooden frame and covered it with cardboard.  (photo courtesy of © Various & Gould)

Various & Gould. And with the help of BRONCO and Studio Nura they transformed the box into an Art Deco Trojan Horse! (photo courtesy of © Various & Gould)

Various & Gould. “Trojan”, Berlin 2012 (photo courtesy of © Various & Gould)

We are very excited about the great, talented and hugely influential artist Cindy Sherman current exhibition at MoMA. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Untitled (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Okazi Gallery Presents: Kyle Hughes-Odgers AKA Creepy: “If We Can’t Control The Boat, Let’s Control The Ocean” (Berlin, Germany)

Kyle Hughes-Odgers

“IF WE CAN’T CONTROL THE BOAT,LET’S CONTROL THE OCEAN”
Kyle Hughes-Odgers – Okazi gallery Berlin.
Vernissage – February 10th – 6PM  with attendence of the artist


These new works explore the futility of an uncontrollable existence, shown in moments of clarity and small gestures of resistance.

Kyle Hughes-Odgers is an Australian artist. His working approach encompasses a range of mediums. Primarily muted warm acrylics on wood, canvas and large scale street work.

Focusing on ideas of nostalgia and story telling through figurative, pattern and abstract imagery. His work is inspired by ideas of communication, chaos and memory.

He has exhibited throughout Australia, as well as internationally in New York, Los Angeles and Paris. His street art and installations have been seen across the globe. His work has previously featured in publications such as Street Art New York (Prestel 2010), Kingbrown, and Empty magazine. In 2010 he completed a 45m public art commission for the Murdoch university art collection in Western Australia.

– OKAZI GALLERY –
OPENING RECEPTION – FRIDAY FEBRUARY 10 | 6PM
EXHIBITION RUNS FEBRUARY 11– 28
TÜRSCHMIDTSTRASSE 18 | 10317 BERLIN | S-NÖLDNERPLATZ |S-OSTKREUZ| TRAM 21 –
MARKTSTRASSE OPENING HOURS: TUESDAY | THURSDAY | SATURDAY 2–6PM

www.okazigallery.com
www.kylehughesodgers.com

 

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Evol and his Miniature Housing Project in London

Berlin based artist Evol took a trip outside his home town across the English Channel to London to create his most recent installation. Known for his ingenious and humorous re-imagining of existing street structures as architecture – sometimes with “giant” tags across them, Evols’ painstaking attention to detail puts you inside his miniature world instantly.
 
We’re very pleased that writer Garry Hunter joins us today to give BSA readers a better understanding of the work of Evol;

Evol has a fascination for sites that focus on meat production, having previously chosen a former Dresden slaughterhouse for his installation Caspar-David-Friedrich-Stadt. Perhaps influenced by Kurt Vonnegut’s novel Slaughterhouse 5, a fantasy novel set during the firebombing of the city in World War Two, the title references the most important German artist of the early 19th Century. While Freidrich is best known for his allegorical landscape paintings, Evol creates pieces that comment on the very opposite of the Romantic school – urban decay.

Evol (photo © Garry Hunter)

A housing block with a graffiti tag is nothing new, but upon closer inspection these images reveal how cleverly Berlin based Evol plays with scale and social comment. Taking stencilling to new levels of detail, including St. Georges Cross English flags beloved by soccer fans and the satellite dishes, he recently completed this major piece in London’s Smithfield meat market.

Evol (photo © Garry Hunter)

By transforming a dozen concrete blocks into miniature apartment blocks Evol reproduces the monstrosity of the estate that included his former Berlin home into a miniature modernist housing estate. The installation has become a tea break destination for contractors working on the nearby Cross-rail high speed transport link.

~ Garry Hunter

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Carhartt Gallery Presents: “Wallflowers” A Group Show (Weil am Rhein – Friedlingen, Germany)

Wallflowers

Parisian Artist LUDO is participating on this show. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The new exhibition, entitled «WALLFLOWERS» is opening on December 03rd, 2011 at the Carhartt Gallery.
The exciting exhibition presents a new take on urbanism, creating the dynamic feel of the city in a new and unique setting. 10 International Artists will be creating art directly on the walls of the exhibition structures. The complexity and energy of this modern art form will be revealed in all its facets, bringing color to the drab gray of winter!

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West Berlin Gallery Presents: “Dissidents” A Group Art Exhibition. (Berlin, Germany)

Dissidents

 

DISSIDENTS
Group Show, Opening November 17th 18:00
A dissident, broadly defined, is a person who actively challenges an established doctrine, policy, or institution. By acknowledging the social and political unrest of this year, West Berlin Gallery cordially invites you from 18:00 until 22:00 on November 17th, 2011 as we debut Dissidents, a Group Show featuring: ALIAS, SP38 , Prost, Emess, Rallito X, BR1, Linda’s Ex, Niark1, Jakob Tolstrup, and Giacomo Spazio.

In 1800s Europe, the rising food prices and high unemployment fueled widespread popular protests. Communist Europe in 1989, created frustration with corrupt and unresponsive political systems and provoked the fall of once powerful regimes. 2011 is spurring a similar chain of events, bringing people together and empowering us to grab our governments by the balls and demand what is rightfully ours, human rights.

Seeking truth and raising awareness, the artists that we have chosen for this show strive for non-conformity and create work representative of both political and social opposition, making them pioneers of dissident activity. Consciously or not, they seek honesty, challenge boundaries, then create art as a way of driving this message in to the minds of on-lookers.

About the artistsALIAS– Always keeping in mind the social and political activities and breaking through the boundaries of traditional art making, ALIAS delivers a great deal of gravity through his loaded imagery and mindful aesthetic. The self taught street artist never ceases to astound the public with his stencil work on recycled material.SP38 – Urban poetry is this Berlin based french artists’ speciality. Mixing silkscreen and paint, SP38 plays with words to create provocative sentences which are strongly related to both political and social events of their time. The more sophisticated look of his artwork, using his unique deep gold color, helps him reach a wide range of public, even those who his messages are directed to.

Prost –  From his “Prostie” smileys making witty social commentaries that always put a smile upon our faces, to denouncing misleading, abusive, sexist advertising by his adbusting actions, Prost has never ceased on challenging society.

Emess – His work is mostly motivated by political issues that he approaches using a wide range of medias, such as murals, prints and sculptures. Emess confronts the viewer with issues that would rather be swept under the rug.

Rallito X – The attitude of an alienated society manipulated by the media, has been this spaniards work theme since he started putting his work up on the streets. Rallito X refuses to follow society’s rules and shows his unconformity with unacceptable formed characters carrying politically incorrect messages.

BR1 – For the last years, this italian artist has been studying the figure of the Muslim woman: history, tradition, legal sources and development in contemporary society. Charmed by the image of veiled women, BR1 decided to take the risk of introducing religious elements on his posters and make us wonder why is this piece of cloth so controversial.

Linda’s Ex – A while ago Roland Brückner aka Lindas Ex asked his lover to come back to him in plastered posters and stickers throughout the city. Nowadays, his pleas have turned into social commentaries sprayed into canvases.

Niark1 – His characters rise like monsters or aliens on a dark world filled by details. Their infinite nature scares and hypnotizes as there is always space for new discoveries. Cutting and pasting strips of newspaper where he later paints, Niark1’s artwork brings his dreams and fears to surface.

Jakob Tolstrup – Mixed media and color crayons are Jakob’s favorite techniques to work with. His characters have a childish style giving a sweet and humorous feeling to his paintings, which take a bitter look into nowadays society.

Giacomo Spazio – The established Italian artist, lead of the Italian Street Art movement, creates pop images, with shocking fluorescent colors that shout out their presence, as loud as possible. Using old fanzines and punk imagery to create lo-fi styled artwork with a cynical and subversive intention.

Vernissage, Thursday November 17th, 18:00 – 22:00
Exhibition on display from November 17th, 2011 to February 24th, 2012

Brunnenstraße 56, 13355 Berlin, Germany

 

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On the Subject of Authority: Berlin Street Art References Golda Meir

It would be fair to say that the first decade of the the 21st Century didn’t augur jolly good times ahead of us. The nascent century brought enormous challenges worldwide:  There were numerous terrorist attacks; 9/11 in the USA was a transformative event that affected the society at large in ways that have not been previously experienced before.  Other countries such as Spain, India and England suffered their own devastating terrorist attacks during the same decade. There was the big economic crisis in 2008 spurred by the banks and the mortgage collapse in the USA and the subsequent massive layoffs from all sorts of industries and gutting of social programs. Not to mention SARS, bird flu, swine flu, earthquakes, forest  fires, hurricanes, mudslides and tsunamis.

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A wheat paste of Golda Meir in Berlin (photo © Er1cBI41r)

By the time December 2010 arrived we were feeling exhausted from the past ten years. Only two months into a new decade few people could have expected that we would be witnessing radical changes taking place in The Middle East. Who could have imagined that the ray of hope in humanity would come from Tunisia and Egypt.  As the people fill the streets to demonstrate publicly to renounce their leaders, citizens in neighboring countries likewise are openly questioning the power and authority of the leaders in their highest offices.  The urge to speak up and demand in the street – it is as if a giant is awakening. Cries for change are coming from the ordinary citizens fed up with authoritarian regimes and amazingly, we are seeing the last gasps for air from shaken dictators who refuse to give up their lucrative and powerful positions.

From Berlin we received this wheat-pasted Street Art with the hand rendered illustration of Golda Meir. Meir was one of the first female politicians to be the elected as the leader of a government in the modern age, as the fourth Prime Minister of Israel from 1969 to 1974. She understood the perils of power and authority during a tumultuous tenure that saw terrorist attacks and the assassination of 11 Israeli athletes during the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. Interesting that various sources online have this quote attributed to both Meir and Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, two people well acquainted with the topic of authority.

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