All posts tagged: ALEX

Artmossphere Dispatch 3: Remi, Luka, Ito and the Move Toward Contemporary

Artmossphere Dispatch 3: Remi, Luka, Ito and the Move Toward Contemporary


This week BSA is in Moscow with you and Urban Nation for Artmossphere 2016, the 2nd Street Art Biennale, a group exposition introducing 26 Russian and 42 foreign artists who were shaped by street art in some way. Also present are international curators, museums and galleries who have significantly intersected with urban art in recent years.

A few more hours until the opening of the Artmossphere Biennale and we have seen many very successful installations – from the aesthetic to the conceptual, painterly to the sculptural, pure joy and pure politics.


Brazil’s Paulo Ito recreated a comedic industrial-looking street scene over come by the mythical powers of the can-wielding graffiti writer. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

In a word, when Street Art and graffiti artists pass the precipice into a multi-disciplinary exhibition such as this, one realizes that this scene has become an important tributary to contemporary art – and one with staying power that very well may re-direct the flow.

Perhaps the street practice is just a training ground for some or these artistss, a formative touchstone for others. It’s up to you to divine what the through-line is among these pieces, as diverse as the collection is. We think that there is a certain defiance present in many works, and a healthy skepticism toward existing hierarchical structures, but that’s just us projecting perhaps.


Alex Sena. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Claudio Ethos. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Remi Rough is known for his smartly soaring abstract geometry in painted murals and smaller scale works, and for Artmossphere he wanted to strip his typical practice back to the basics, approaching a white box with one undulating graphic composition.

“My idea was that Moscow’s a bit ‘over the top’,” he says, and he decided to pare the audacity and go for simplicity, which actually takes courage.

“I said ‘you know what?’ – I want to do something with the cheapest materials that you can possibly get. These two pieces literally cost about 3,000 rubles ($50). It’s felt material, it’s like lambs wool. I think they use it for flooring for construction.”


Remi Rough. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“I wanted to do something peaceful and calming and to use natural materials – something that’s different from what I usually do – but I use the folds in the fabric and the pink color – two things that I usually use a lot.”

And the crisply painted pink dot? “The circle takes it back to the wall and takes it back to the kind of perfection that I like to get. I love the imperfection of the fabric as well – I love the rough edges – a kind of counter-perfection. For me this interpretation of my own work was quite freestyle.”


Misha Buryj. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Moscow’s Alexey Luka is also challenging himself  to stretch creatively by taking his wall collage installations of found wood and converting them into free-standing sculptures.

“For this biennale I tried to make something different so now I am going from the assemblages to 3-D.”


Alexey Luka. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“My work is made from found wood – I use what I find on the street and with my shapes and my graphics –  so it’s kind of an experiment with three dimensions,” and he says most of this wood is sourced here in Moscow. We watch him completing his singular wall piece and notice that he has painted many eyes into the composition.

“In the 2-D piece I try to combine very simple geometric shapes with the eyes and make a huge composition on the wall.” Perhaps these eyes are Muscovites?

“They are just like observers,” he says.


Hot Tea. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Minneapolis-based artist Hot Tea usually does huge colorful yarn installations that transform public space, but for the biennale he is taking the conceptual route. The walk-in room is based on the Whack-A-Mole game. With white fabric stretched wall to wall at chest level within the cube, meter-wide holes are cut which a visitor can crouch under and rise above.

Visitors/participants will experience the physical separation of space, and perhaps contemplate facing one another or ignoring each other – with absolutely no other visual distraction. It is something he says he hopes will draw attention to how many walls we have allowed ourselves to distract us from human interactions.


Gola. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Spiritual, scientific, and environmental topics are often intertwined in the works of Italy’s Gola, who has bundled Moscow branches and buried something glowing and golden within them.

These days, he’s being a bit more formal in his approach. “Now I’m trying to go in a kind of didactic way always – a little bit more more environmental stuff. Yes, I think it’s important.”


Finok. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Mimmo RubKandy. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Torino’s Mimmo RubKandy recreated the Moscow Olympic village from 1980, now a home for hundreds of families, and a hip-hop graffiti scene as well. The soaring towers are painted in scale with tiny graffiti tags, throwies, extinguisher tags, and the like – at the base and on the the roofs.

Curator Christian Omodeo tells us that these are taken directly from the artists investigations of the site as it exists today. It is striking that the scale reduces the impact of the graffiti – yet when experienced at eye-level it has a potency. Accompanying the towers are framed photos of the current site via Google images, including blurred faces and logos.


Mimmo RubKandy. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Mimmo RubKandy. Moscow International Biennale of Street Art. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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HENSE Goes Abstractly Huge In Lima, Peru

Atlanta based graffiti artist and Street Artist Hense has just created a massive abstract wall in Lima that radically energizes a beige facade along a major artery through the city.

His largest mural so far, and yet one more Street Artist who is expressing this new romance with color, geometry and pattern on the streets, Hense says the scale presented some technical challenges on how to retain a loose, painterly feel even as he felt dwarfed by his own work. “We used strings and ropes to create circles and lines that needed to be accurate. However, most gestures and shapes were created freehand,” he explains.  Familiar with transforming architecture with his non-representational, sometimes graffiti tagged work, Hense was recently in the news for re-skinning a very traditional church in Washington.

Hense (photo © Jules Bay)

This time he and a lead assistant and a crew of 10 professional painters took about a month to layer multiple patterns and sections and colors mainly in latex, with some aerosol, to mask out and create and re-create until Hense felt like he hit the mark. Without a distinct plan in hand, he took inspiration from the colors of the region, the nearby architecture, and the imagination machinations of the moment.

“One thing I feel is important when working on this scale is the improvisational use of tools to create the marks and shapes. In order to reach heights and lengths I had to attach brushes to extension poles to paint in hard to reach areas,” he says. “Every shape and mark that we made on the wall had to be massive to be seen from a great distance. I also wanted to leave smaller, details that would be seen by viewers close to the work.”

The project was organized by Morbo Gallery and funded by the ISIL Institute in MiraFlores, and Hense says he is really grateful for the hospitality of people he met and worked with. He’s still sort of marvelling at the project, his biggest yet.

“I’m always wanting to challenge myself and the viewer in regards to painting and what that can be.”

Hense (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense. The Crew. (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense. The Artist. (photo © Jules Bay)

Hense. The Mural. (photo © Jules Bay)

With very special thanks to: Jules Bay, Taylor Means, Morbo Gallery, ISIL Institute, Luar Zeid, Panorama, Angel, Paul, Pedro, Alex, Miguel, Jaime, Mayo, William, Christian Rinke, Gino Moreno, Os Villavicencio, Carlos Benvenuto, Candice House, and Elard Robles for all the hard work and making this project come to fruition.




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Addict Galerie Presents: L’Art Urbain 2″ A Group Show (Paris, France)

Addict Galerie
Avec AIKO, ALEX, Boris Hoppek, John “CRASH” Matos,
DOZE GREEN, Daniel Tagno, Mambo, Mist, Smash137, TOXIC.

Exposition du 4 décembre au 18 janvier 2011 / Exhibition from december 4th to january 18th 2011

Vernissage le samedi 4 décembre de 18 à 21 h / Opening on saturday the 4th, december 6 – 9 pm

Le succès rencontré par la première exposition consacrée à l’art urbain …du mur a l’atelier, avec des artistes tels Gérard Zlotykamien, Lady Pink, John Fekner et Don Leicht, Jean Faucheur… a encouragé Addict Galerie à poursuivre son panorama dédié à un mouvement de l’art contemporain. Si notre première proposition mettait en valeur le passage en atelier d’artistes qui proposaient une variété de techniques usant des matériaux les plus divers, il s’agit cette fois de laisser découvrir des peintres encore fortement ancrés dans le paysage urbain et pratiquant aussi le travail sur toile. Cette approche cherche à souligner la réussite éclatante de cet art.

Dans ce deuxième volet, l’influence du graffiti est plus forte comme le montrent les talents toujours aussi variés, qui partageront les murs de cette exposition.

Pour toute demande de visuels – Contacter la galerie : +33 (0)1 48 87 05 04 /

Images available upon request – Contact the gallery : +33(0)1 48 87 05 04 /

Laetitia Hecht
14/16 rue de Thorigny
75003 Paris – France.
T: +33(0)1 48 87 05 04

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