All posts tagged: Andrew Michael Ford

Fun Friday 07.02.10

Fun-Friday

It’s Only Street Art When It’s On the Street

So you might as well move the furniture out on the sidewalk for your 4th of July Bar-B-Que this weekend and enjoy the best of both worlds.  Look, some guests have already arrived!  Pictured below on the Brooklyn street are Veng (RWK), Imminent Disaster, El Sol 25, Yote, and Andrew Michael Ford. Is the beer cold yet?

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(image © Jaime Rojo)

Let Jimi Put You In the Mood for a Patriotic Weekend

In Manhattan – Street Artist Dennis McNett’s Wild Kingdom Runs 50 Feet of Barney’s Windows

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Brooklyn based artist Dennis McNett totally smashed the windows at Barneys with his imagination. “Passerby’s can see over sized wolf, owl, and skull masks paired with mannequins dressed in evening wear with a backdrop of psychodelic starbursts and swooping wolfbats. Dennis’s woodcut blocks, prints, masks and paper mache sculptures adorn the mannequins and window interiors. His imagery from nature, folklore, mythology, and story telling mixed with the graphic carved wood patterns from wood block prints sets a very unique stage for the store and this part of town.”

Barneys NY Madison Ave. between 60th and 61st through July 12th
They are best seen at night as they have been professionally lit.  Check out Dennis at www.wolfbat.com

Biggie on the Street at 17 – Where Brooklyn At?

You’ll Hear This One At Least ONCE This Weekend

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Fun Friday 06.11.10 on BSA

Fun-Friday

Fundraiser, Print Show, New Gallery Opening in Brooklyn

99percent

Don’t miss the opening and fundraiser tonight of Brooklyn’s newest gallery, called 99%. The silent auction will feature new prints by Swoon (left) and Gaia (right) as well as Bast, Chris Mendoza, Cycle, Dennis McNett, Doze Green, Ellis G, Eric White, Esao Andrews, EZO, Ian Kuali’I, Imminent Disaster, Jeremiah Ketner, Jose Parla, Kenji Hirata, Lady Pink, Martha Cooper, Martin Wittfooth, Maya Hayuk, Mel Kadel, Morning Breath, Nathan Lee Pickett, Orlando Reyes, Rage Johnson, Ricky Powell, Rostarr, Ryan Humphrey, Skewville, Tara McPherson, Tono Radvany, Voodo Fe, Xiaoqing Ding, Yuri Shimojo

See our interview with gallery owners Andrew Michael Ford and Mikal Hameed HERE.

For more info go to http://www.ninetyninegallery.com/

Collabo With Blu and Os Gemeos for Crono festival in Lisboa (Portugal)

see the finished wall here:
http://cargocollective.com/crono
Os Gemeos blog:
http://osgemeos.com.br/
about Blu:
http://blublu.org

Guy Denning and David Walker Show Tomorrow

brooklynite

The Village Voice said it’s good and that’s all that matters. More info about the Guy Denning and David Walker show at Brooklynite here.

GUY DENNING • DAVID WALKER
June 12 – July 10

Musical Guest: DJ REKHA

Happy World Cup!!!! Here is Tsatsulow,the Best Soccer Freestyler in the World

FIGMENT on Governors Island – Interactive Art for Everybody (Free Free Free)

Figment

The Figment Festival on Governor’s Island boasts so many live arts and activities for free this weekend that it is guaranteed to relax and exhaust you simultaneously. A number of street artists are going to be there performing live, as well as a number of interactive installations and performances to challenge and titillate.

Governors island continues to expand and grow, and FIGMENT this year is no exception. Check the ferry schedule (free). There are ferries from Brooklyn again this year. Visitors are encouraged to bring bikes and food.

Figment all Weekend http://figmentproject.org/2010/events/figment-nyc-2010-event-projects-artists/

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How Fast Can You Paint a Portrait?

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Brooklyn’s New “99%” Will Serve Street Art Fans and Many More

Brooklyn’s New “99%” Will Serve Street Art Fans and Many More

99% Perspiration, 1% Inspiration

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Anyone in New York will tell you that the adage holds true if you are trying to get your dream to happen in this city– a band, a restaurant, a store, a website, a clothing line.  It could be a genius idea, but you’re going to have to work for it. Gallerist/curator Andrew Michael Ford and artist Mikal Hameed, both in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg since 1999, have put in plenty of perspiration getting separate projects off the ground over the last decade in NYC.  This spring as their shared dream of an art center and gallery in Billyburg gathered momentum, they redoubled their efforts and called every artist and source they knew.  Tomorrow, their dream, called “99%”, will open with a community fundraiser auction of prints by those artists. Ford and Hameed are going to do the necessary perspiring to make it happen.

Common Dreams, Rooted In Respect

Together, the two partners (along with a silent 3rd ) have discussed this gallery and community art space for a year and a half.  Studio talks about formal goals, bar-stool wisdom about esoteric ones, and serious footwork finally secured this location in a Brooklyn neighborhood considered a Street Art destination for artists and fans since the late 90’s.  Formerly an artist enclave, the neighborhood is rapidly changing as rezoning from 2005 allowed gentrification to rapidly bland the bohemian vibe, even as the change was slowed by the speed-bump of a huge recession.  Ironically, as the street art in the neighborhood is gradually disappearing, 99%, a gallery that celebrates it, opens it doors.

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Mikal (known professionally as M11X), an innovative ingenious creator of art merging furniture and stereos, came from a graff background on the west coast writing as SMUGE with the WCA crew as a youth.

“So I was a writer, then I was an MC, a break dancer, whatever – all 5 elements. I started to gradually change and become well connected with people who are part of the street art scene,” says Mikal as he recounts his path to this place. He recalls how he ran a gallery called Headquarters in San Francisco and Oakland before coming to New York and running MJH’s gallery in Williamsburg.

“This is just part of my whole evolution. It’s been building up inside of me for so long. “

As he speaks about his goals for 99% he talks about the life of an artist. You can tell that he sincerely wants to bring a greater command of the craft to the newer graff and street artists out today – people he refers to often as “The Kids” .

Ford, a gallerist best known for his work as gallery director at both the pivotal Street Art gallery Ad Hoc Gallery in Bushwick and for the Dark Pop and Pop Surrealists at Last Rites Gallery in Chelsea, hopes to merge his affinities for any number of current art movements, most considered “outside” or lo-brow by the established gallery scene.

“Yeah, I think it’s more about ‘the work’, the skill levels, and the imagination.  The artist may also put up work in the street or do comic books for a profession or they are a professional illustrator but they have such a desire to do personal work.  A lot of galleries will look at them as simply an illustrator and not an artist, and I think those kinds of distinctions are ridiculous. An artist is an artist and they want to express themselves creatively and they want to have a place where they can do that. ”

Me and my shadow. Andrew Michael Ford stands by a much loved wall in the studio and a view of his portrait by Street Artist Ellis G. on the door

Me and my shadow. Andrew Michael Ford stands by a much loved wall in the studio and a view of his portrait by Street Artist Ellis G. on the door

Street Art, comic books, illustration, pin-up, animation, new media, graffiti, tattoos, folk art, – these terms pepper-spray through the conversation as Andrew, an enthusiastic conveyor of ideas about the current state of art and the gallery scene, barely keeps up with his own ideas. Clearly he hopes to create a gallery where unsung and marginalized art forms are given the respect he thinks they’ve missed. Street Art may be hot at the moment, but labels are not going to be the determining factor for whether 99% Gallery works with an artist or not.

BSA: Are we going to retire the term “Street Art” at any time in the near future?

Andrew: That obviously is a public debate, and obviously that is something that everyone should be involved with as far as what’s going to happen with these other terms like “low brow”, “pop surrealism”, “street art” and similar terms.

Mikal: They asked the same question about graffiti in the late 80s and I don’t think we were ever able to retire it.

BSA: So is there such a thing as “Street Art: Phase 2”?

Mikal: I think we are at Phase 3 or Phase 4 at this point.

Brooklyn-Street-Art-WEB-copyright-Steven-P-Harrington-99-percentL-MIKAL-ANDREW

An Educational Component

But it’s not just going to be a gallery. The guys want to create an art space that serves and educates, along with showing cutting edge art.

Sketching out their plans for the near future, Andrew explains, “We’re not talking about traditional education here – we’re talking about re-examining how the work is presented to people. I would say first phase is about lectures and talks, and we can work our way into workshops and classes down the road.”  The ideas for educational topics run the gamut, but they often touch on the basics that both partners feel have been missed by many of today’s artists.

“Yeah, kids need to learn how to do their own framing, make their own stretchers”, says Mikal, “I wish somebody taught me how to do that.”

Sounding like he is creating a new class on-the-fly, Andrew jumps in, “I do have a traditional art education background, — it was so much conceptual stuff, so much theory. There wasn’t a whole lot of practical stuff.  It was amazing that I could have this degree and yet it was after school that I had to learn a lot of stuff on my own.  It seems like a simple thing but I have this conversation with people all the time; What is the difference between a Giclée print, a hand silkscreened print, and what is a serigraph?”

A grassroots, populist philosophy enters the conversation again and again, and it becomes evident that the focus will be on the person, their approach, and the talent –rather than the formal educational background or pedigree of an artist.

“Yeah we want to create an equal playing field for a lot of artists,” stresses Mikal.

What playing field are they trying to equal out? Mikal responds, “Sometimes it just comes down to skills and imagination. You may not have the proper education but you have your passion and your motivation about this whole movement – you should be recognized as well.  Your sh*t should be up right next to the other stuff because your education could have come from somewhere else beside school.”

How often do you see this? Doze Green and Martha Cooper catching a tag on the wall of the new gallery.

How often do you see this? Doze Green and Martha Cooper catching a tag on the wall of the new gallery.

So the men have a lot in store, and they have what can only be described as a healthy dose of mutual respect.

Andrew praises Mikal’s talents and explains what he brings to the partnership, “One of the most important things is that Mikal is a very vibrant active artist who is doing shows regularly and has a different relationship with people than me because he is a working artist. It is really important to me to have Mikal because we are really good sounding boards for each other. I might be thinking a little more about the business side of things and how we are going to present it and he is thinking more about the specific piece of art and where the artist is coming from. He could say to me, ‘You may want to consider this because this is how the artist is going to feel’. I think it is a really really good match”

For his part, Mikal sounds solid in his dedication, “The people that work with Andrew just have straight up respect for him and they know that he’s the main guy in this business right now but he just needed his own platform to show everybody what’s up.”

Is this place big enough for all their dreams?

“No, but it’s a start. There is no place like that,” says Mikal.

Andrew agrees, “I’m really grateful for the fact that it is a tremendous starting point and an incredible location. I think it is going to benefit everybody that we work with”.

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images of Andrew Michael Ford and Mikaal Hameed © Steven P. Harrington

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99% Gallery and Art Center

99 North 10th (between Berry and Wythe), Brooklyn, NY 11211

OPENING RECEPTION: JUNE 11TH, 7-11PM

FUNDRAISER PRINT GROUP SHOW SILENT AUCTION to benefit 99% and the artists.

$5 COVER

Participating artists for the print show  include:
Bast,Chris Mendoza,Cycle,Dennis McNett,Doze Green,Ellis G,Eric White,Esao Andrews,EZO,Gaia,Ian Kuali’I,Imminent Disaster,Jeremiah Ketner,Jose Parla,Kenji Hirata,Lady Pink,Martha Cooper,Martin Wittfooth,Maya Hayuk,Mel Kadel,Morning Breath,Nathan Lee Pickett,Orlando Reyes,Rage Johnson,Ricky Powell,Rostarr,Ryan Humphrey,Skewville,Swoon,Tara McPherson,Tono Radvany,Voodo Fe,Xiaoqing Ding,Yuri Shimojo

For more information about the auction

CONTACT:info@ninetyninegallery.com
WEBSITE: www.ninetyninegallery.com

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99% Gallery and Art Center : Debut and Fundraiser

OPENING RECEPTION: JUNE 11TH, 7-11PM

FUNDRAISER PRINT GROUP SHOW SILENT AUCTION for the new…

99%
Gallery and Art Center

99 North 10th (between Berry and Wythe)
Brooklyn, NY  11211

$5 COVER

The first opening will be a print group show fundraiser, to benefit the new space.  All prints will be available for purchase via a silent auction.  First bid MUST be half of the retail price of the print.  Each bid thereafter must increase my increments of $20.  Cover: $5

If you are unable to physically be at the gallery, but would like to bid on prints from the show, e-mail: info@ninetyninegallery.com

Participating artists for the print show so far include:
Chris Mendoza
Cycle
Doze Green
Ellis G
Eric White
Esao Andrews
Gaia
Ian Kuali’i
Jose Parla
Kenji Hirata
Martha Cooper
Mel Kadel
Morning Breath
Nathan Lee Pickett
Orlando Reyes
Rage Johnson
Rostarr
Ryan Humprey
Skewville
Swoon
Tara McPherson
Tono Radvany
Voodo Fe
Xiaoqing Ding
Yuri Shimojo

ABOUT 99%

99% perspiration, 1% inspiration.  This old adage still makes sense in 2010.  We at 99% Art Space produce the 99% perspiration, allowing the artists we work with to focus on the final 1% inspiration.  We want to do the work to create a space which will be conducive to not only art exhibiting, but also to art appreciating, art learning and in the end art creating.  We believe in the artist and the artwork they produce.  This is the reason we, or any other art space for that matter, even exists.  It’s about the artist and the inspiration and enlightenment their final art embodies.

99% is dedicated to doing everything in our power to support the artist and the work they create.  We are also dedicated to art learning, through our upcoming series of lectures, classes, workshops and so much more.  Of course we also are dedicated to working with the artists we want believe in to produce a regular schedule of exhibitions throughout the year.

Lastly, 99% is dedicated to underdogs.  We will exhibit artists who been inspired by the worlds of comic books, animation, new media, graffiti, tattoos, illustration, folk art and many other forms of pop, subversive and outsider imagery.

99% perspiration, 1% inspiration.  We like the way that sounds.  We like the idea of working hard to create an environment for our artists to engage with comfortably, as they change the world one idea at a time!

P.S. Oh, and it doesn’t hurt that the number on our building is 99!  😉

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Two Andrews talk about “From the Streets of Brooklyn”

An unprecedented show of Brooklyn street art starts off 2009 at ThinkSpace gallery.

Bam! The year has barely started and the momentum from the previous giant year for street art blows clear into January with a new show of 50 artists from the streets of Brooklyn.

ThinkSpace Gallery, a warm-hearted community space and home of rockin’ shows in L.A. since 2005, plays host to it’s brothers and sisters across the continent with a salon-style show of street artists, graff writers, a hot photographer, and live on-the-street work by the chalk artist from BK.

In the middle of the installation craziness, the curator of the show, Andrew Michael Ford (gallery director at Ad Hoc), and Andrew Hosner (co-founder of ThinkSpace), talked with Brooklyn Street Art about the show:

BSA: So how did AdHoc and ThinkSpace hook up to do this show?

Andrew Hosner: Andrew and I have been friends for a while, and met while he was still doing some curating before hooking up with the Ad Hoc crew. One day we were just shooting the s**t about some show ideas and I tossed out the idea of bringing Brooklyn to Los Angeles…

Andrew Michael Ford: I’ve followed what ThinkSpace shows for quite some time and I was always very impressed with the work. I also have always felt that the folks who run ThinkSpace and myself have very similar tastes as far as curating art goes. Something like this has been talked about or at least thought about for quite some time and when Thinkspace approached us about doing it I felt like it was the right place and right time.

BSA: Is it a kind of East-West cultural exchange?

Andrew Michael Ford: The show is about bringing a large group of Brooklyn street artists and graf writers to Los Angeles. We haven’t discussed bringing LA artists to Brooklyn but I would be open to talking about something like that for the future.

Thundercut (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Thundercut (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

BSA: Brooklyn’s streetscape is pretty dense and is largely accessible by foot. Do you think the L.A. scene is more spread out? How do the two differ, in broad strokes.

Andrew Michael Ford: I have never been to LA but I heard you need a car to get anywhere out there so I assume it’s gotta be pretty spread out.

Andrew Hosner: I think you nailed it on the head, Brooklyn is much more condensed and has more of a community vibe to it I feel, whereas LA is the true meaning of urban sprawl, being one of the most spread out and varied big cities out there. There’s no real community vibe, save for lil’ pockets here and there, but the breadth of the city kind of goes against the notion of all that.

Dan Witz "Scott" from show "From the Streets of Brooklyn" (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Dan Witz "Scott" from show "From the Streets of Brooklyn" (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

BSA: Maybe this is impossible to put your finger on, but what would be a couple of characteristics that distinguish Brooklyn street art from other cities in the world?

Andrew Michael Ford: For me it started in NYC. I mean, graf started in Philly but really came into it’s own in NYC. I just don’t see that kind of history anywhere else. I see the lineage of graf into street art and that is why so many graf writers have been invited to this show. It’s not just about who is doing a lot of street art. It’s about who is getting up and staying in the streets of Brooklyn regardless of tools being used. I don’t like it when street artists from other cities look at graf here in NYC as some kind of background for their work. It’s a massive slap in the face to all graf writers. Brooklyn street artists have a lot more respect for graf than street artists I have met from other cities, especially from Europe. Maybe that’s the thing that distinguishes what’s going on in the streets of Brooklyn from other places.

Imminent Disaster (earlier work) (courtesy ThinkSpace and Ad Hoc)

Imminent Disaster (earlier work) (courtesy ThinkSpace and Ad Hoc)

BSA: You are showing a LOT of artists…did you have enough (Think) Space?

Andrew Hosner: Hahaha… it will be a very packed show hung salon style, going off of color palette and style. Should look amazing, but it is going to be a visual overload for sure. Patrons will be overwhelmed by Gaia and Rachel Lowing’s thought provoking install immediately upon entering the gallery, then passing through the entry area will be met by a tidal wave of artwork, coming at them from all directions, floor to ceiling… before turning the corner into our project room in the back where Disaster’s massive undertaking will greet them.

BSA: A bit like herding cats?

Andrew Michael Ford: Not really. Honestly, everyone involved believes in this show so much and have been very supportive and helpful in putting it all together.

Matt Siren (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Matt Siren (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

BSA: Will you have time to give Mr. Ford a tour of the sickest sites while he’s there?

Andrew Hosner: It’s hard to say since the focus will be our show, but hopefully on Saturday after the show has passed we will get out to see some of the hotter spots about LA to enjoy works outside. With so many coming to town for the opening, there’s a good chance we’ll be able to watch some of Brooklyn’s finest… cool thing is, all will be able to watch Ellis G. on opening night doing his thing on our block, and I can’t wait for that.

Andrew Michael Ford: I would love to see some stuff by Saber if possible. But really anything good being done would be great to check out.

Ellis G. (courtesy Ad Hoc and ThinkSpace)

Ellis G. (courtesy Ad Hoc and ThinkSpace)

BSA: The Brooklyn scene keeps evolving rapidly; what is one trend that you are seeing that is telling you about the future?

I see more and more people throwing up wheatpastes in the streets that I don’t feel are well executed or well placed. I mean, there is room for everything and I love to see what people feel they need to put up but it does worry me sometimes when I see tons of poorly crafted wheatpastes thrown all over the place with no thought to where it is being placed or the quality of the imagery they are producing. I would just like to see people take a little more time in the creation of their art and in the selection of the spots they decide to hit.

Elbow-Toe (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Elbow-Toe (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

BSA: Whose work is exciting to you right now, and what does it say to you?

Andrew Hosner: I love the work of Elbow-Toe, whose work is really a statement on the state of things in our society right now. His every man piece is by far one of the most powerful and extremely well executed works of this past year. You can look at that work 20 years from now and know that it was referencing the economic struggles were going through currently, while also hinting at the 1st great depression. Powerful work.

Also very inspired by the works of Imminent Disaster, due to her strength in so many different creative outlets… Chris Stain also is someone who should be looked up to. Thought provoking work and just a great overall cat.

Stikman (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Stikman (courtesy ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Andrew Michael Ford: I think that street art needs to interact with the space where it is placed (good placement is key) and it needs to engage the viewer. Working big can sometimes do this but sometimes it can be a big massive nothing. It’s tough to point to a specific artist but if I had to pick one I can say I’m really intrigued by what the artist Stikman does, as he uses a wide variety of mediums and techniques and always catches you off guard with the placement of his work. Very smart work.

Anera (image by Luna Park) (courtesy Luna Park, ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

Anera (image by Luna Park) (courtesy Luna Park, ThinkSpace and AdHoc)

BSA: What impression do you think the gallery-goer in L.A. is going to come away with about the Brooklyn street art scene?

Andrew Michael Ford: That’s a great question but sadly one that I have no answer to. I haven’t got a clue what kind of reception we will get when we arrive. I am hoping this can be a positive experience for everyone involved.

Andrew Hosner: I hope they come away feeling inspired and filled with the desire to visit the streets of Brooklyn in person, so they can experience these works as they were originally meant to be, and also feel compelled to explore the works of each in the show further, hopefully coming away with a new favorite that they will watch in the years that lay ahead.

I think many will also be surprised at the sheer breadth and quality of work on view – it is definitely an eye opener type of exhibit. Hopefully this will help to open their eyes to the beauty that is all around them in Los Angeles and abroad. So many walk through their city with blinders on, and it really is a revelation when you start to take in and appreciate the work of urban artists.

ThinkSpace Gallery

AdHoc Art

From the Streets of Brooklyn

More stuff on ThinkSpace and Andrew Hosner from the art collector blog

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