This summer New York has been crazily, sometimes chaotically overlaid with tons of graffiti, Street Art, and murals – a testament to the enduring passion of a public that wants to see this organic patterning of the city skin, and the unquenchable thirst that artists and writers in New York have for showing their work to the public without intervening forces. Some of it is illegal, some of it is legal – all of it is part of the New York conversation.
Additionally, and in concert with, this ongoing conversation is a private pop-up exhibition called “Beyond the Streets” that pulls back from this moment and looks at pertinent and fundamental slices of the first 50 years of art in the streets from the perspective of a handful of sharp-eyed curators who have done their homework.
Presented in the context of historians defining a view of the scene with an eye toward private collectors of contemporary art, the vast show features paintings, sculpture, photography, site-specific installations, commercially branded environments, a large gift shop, historical ephemera – and a 30th anniversary Shepard Fairey exhibition within the exhibition.
“Beyond the Streets” in Williamsburg, Brooklyn was originally a three-month show that ran through August, it has been extended to September 29th – as they say – by popular demand. In addition, to celebrate and thank the community for their support, BEYOND THE STREETS will host free admission day on Thursday August 29th.
They used to run from the Vandal Squad in this
neighborhood. Now people pay to see their art here.
Through the expansive glass wall on the 6th floor you can look down Kent Avenue to see the spot where a monster pickup truck with a heavy chain tied around a FAILE prayer wheel almost jackknifed on the sidewalk, gave up and sped away. Not that many Brooklynites saw that event in the 2000s – nobody walked here and few people drove through Williamsburg then except truckers looking for street walking ladies wearing high heels and spandex. Oh, and a serial killer.
Now visitors buy tickets to see a circular colonnade of FAILE prayer wheels here at 25 Kent – including the real estate developers and Wall Street professionals who displaced the community of artists whose work made the neighborhood attractive and “edgy”.
Along with Street Artists in this exhibition like Shepard Fairey, Bast, Swoon, Invader, Aiko, Dan Witz, Katsu, 1UP, and Lister, the FAILE duo put completely illegal artworks on walls under cover of night and threat of arrest in this same neighborhood then – transforming it with many others who are not in this show into an open gallery of the streets, placing Williamsburg on the map as New Yorks’ epicenter of the newly emerging Street Art scene.
The Nature of Graffiti and Street Art
As graffiti and Street Art are migratory and necessarily elusive by nature, this story is only one chapter in a volume of history that serious academics are now reconstructing and analyzing. With each passing year and published white paper, the practices of 20th century public mark-making are being examined in greater detail for archiving and for posterity. Not surprisingly, institutions, patrons, collectors, and brands are increasingly interested in this story as well.
When it comes to the anarchic subculture of illegal
street art practice and its influence on society, there are non-stop ironies
sprayed en route from verboten to Vuitton, and street culture has supercharged
the imagination of the mainstream and high culture throughout history – that’s
where the best ideas come from sometimes. Many seminal artworks from “the
scene”, as it were, represent much more than what you are seeing at first
glance. As art and cultural critic Carlo McCormick has described the iconic
Shepard Fairey ‘Hope’ image in Art in
America, many graffiti and Street Art works saved are “not a
fleeting pop-culture sensation but simply the latest crossover hit in a long
line of underground classics.”
The wide-ranging survey that is Beyond the Streets makes sure that you know where the roots are, and who many of the pioneers were. It is impossible to tell a complete story that includes scenes as diverse as west coast Chicano muralism, hobo graffiti, hip-hop commercial design, NY downtown artivism, Japanese low/hi contemporary, skateboard, tattoo, early train writing and a current romance with muralism, but BTS at least gives a serious consideration to each and offers you the opportunity to look further into them.
With the help of photography documentation from people like Martha Cooper, Henry Chalfant, Jim Prigoff, Lisa Kahane, Joe Conzo, John Fekner, Bill Daniel, Maripol, and Dash Snow, the crucial importance of this work provides needed interstitial and contextual information that enables myriad stories to be elucidated.
Exhaustive, no. Exhausting, possibly. Pace yourself.
spent my life surrounded by graffiti and Street Art,” says the shows’ director
Roger Gastman “and you could say that I have been obsessed with understanding
the culture, its origins, and its evolution. It’s incredible to me how far it
With 150 artists whose practices span five decades
and various (mainly) American subcultures displayed in a maze of new walls in
this 100,000 sf, two-floor exhibition, the Beyond the Streets senior curatorial
team includes Gastman, filmmaker/ graffiti historian Sacha Jenkins SHR, Juxtapoz
Editor in Chief Evan Pricco, and author/ graffiti historian / graffiti writer David
CHINO Villorente. Each curator brings core competencies and knowledge of the
graffiti scene (Gastman, Jenkins, Villorente) as it has evolved to include the
Street Art practice and an eventual move toward contemporary art (Pricco).
“It’s absolutely phenomenal,” says Villorente, who says his history as
a graffiti writer compounds the impact for him. “I was glad that the show was
coming to New York because I was born and raised in Brooklyn. I couldn’t have
imagined it – especially when I think back on when I was writing on the trains
and doing illegal graffiti. To have of show of this magnitude is really
“We started writing in ’68 and here we are, fifty-one years later,” says Mike 171 as he gestures toward himself and crew writer SJK 171 when talking about how they began and continued writing their tags on the street in New York City. “This is the history right here,” he says, and you know you are about to be schooled about the plain realities of early graffiti writing. At the opening, you witness each guy tagging in a large dusty window here and realize the love for writing never actually stops.
“We were expressing something that was inside of us,” says SJK 171. “The streets were like ours,” he tells you against a backdrop of their work, Cornbread’s work, and of images full of one color, single line monikers that set the stage for the more colorful, character-driven pieces and burners a decade later, transforming trains into a rolling aesthetic symphony by the mid 1970s.
One of the actual “whole car” writers of that period, Lee “LEE” Quinones, here recreates a “Soul Train” car side on a canvas that looks like it could easily wrap an actual MTA #2-line car that he used to slaughter with cans in the middle of the night at the train yard. When describing the new work he said he was intentionally keeping it simple – perhaps owing the style to his earlier practice.
“I think this is one of Lee’s most amazing pieces,” says Charlie Ahearn, the director of the seminal 1982 “Wild Style” film that Quinones stars in. Ahearn self-produced that film which became an important distillation of the merging of graffiti with hip-hop culture during a pivotal moment in the history of both. Now also a professor of Hip-Hop, art, design, and documentary film making at Pace University, Ahearn is familiar with many of the artists work here, many relationships reaching back decades. “I told Lee that I liked that it was a one-off, that he painted all the color straight off without the embellishment, texturing, and all that stuff.”
Charlie’s twin brother John Ahearn is represented here popping out from walls as well, his sculptures serving as authentic portraits of people you may easily have seen on New York streets over the last four decades. Casted directly on top of the people themselves in a technique he has perfected, the placement of the sculptures gives life to the space.
Star Writers, Immersive Environments, Foundations
The individual clusters of work and canvasses by 1970s-80s train painters like Futura, Crash, Lady Pink, Freedom, Carlos Mare, Blade, Haze, and Daze and next gen graphic painters like Doze Green and Rime are complemented by a number of so-called “immersive” spaces here like the Mission Schools’ Barry McGee storefront with smashed window, and the Australian Pop duo Dabs & Myla’s eye candy floral walls with thousands of artificial fauna created in collaboration with Amelia Posada.
The high-profile graphic activist Shepard Fairey’s 30 year career overview takes a large area and encompasses all elements of his street and studio practice, and Bill Barminski’s cardboard home is open for you to explore with a wry smile, remembering the security room installation he did at Banksy’s Dismaland a couple years earlier.
also treated to a full rolling wall of Craig Stecyk posters that brings you the
sun and surf of California skate culture, sculptures by Mr. Cartoon and Risk, a
kid-friendly illustrated room with crafting supplies for young fans on tables
from HuskMitNavn, and an astute freight train culture educational display by
writer/painter/sculptor Tim Conlon (complete with a mid-sized Southern Pacific freight
on train tracks he and friends built), prints/photos by historian Bill Daniel, and
original drawings by the man some call the King of Hobo Art, buZ blurr.
are a self portrait as predicated on a first Bozo Texino person and I kind of
changed the image around,” says Mr. blurr, a legendary figure in denim
overalls, as he patiently describes his classic tag image of a railway cowboy.
is a writer motif – the pipe smoke is going up and then it is trailing back to
signify movement as the train goes down the track,” he says. “I worked in the
train yards and my job was as a brakeman. I had a little free time so I started
making drawings. I made my first one on November 11, 1971,” he says as he
recalls the state of mind that he was in at the time as he began to tag
freights with the image and text that came to him clearly – and may have
perplexed other travellers.
came from a confused state. I was questioning everything. I was putting kind of
cryptic messages under my drawings. It was anybody’s guess as to its literal
interpretation. I addressed some of them up to specific people but whether they
saw them or responded to them, I wouldn’t have any idea.”
it’s shipped in the crate its 550 pounds,” says Conlon as he stands by the 3-foot
high freight car re-creation on tracks and ties that is
hit with a couple of wild and colorful graffiti burners. “Here I’m going to
show you something,” he says as he pulls back the roof to reveal the narrow
coffin interior in rusted red. “So I’m going to hide some beer in here during
the opening party. This is like the fifth one of these I’ve made,” and he proudly
confides that one lives in the house of Robert Downey Jr.
Digging Deep to Take Risks
to rest on laurels and previous formulas of success, the show keeps a freshness
by presenting known entities pushing themselves further and taking creative risks;
a reflection of that spirit of experimentation we have always prized on the
writer Earsnot from Irak crew, now known professionally as Kunle Martin, said
he had been making work for the gallery containing elements of graffiti, but
felt they were too “safe”.
“Then my friend Dan said ‘you should go back to doing drawings,’” he says as he stands before figurative canvasses in black and white on cardboard. “I said ‘I can’t! It’s too hard! But eventually I began working in my studio five days a week, and I made enough for a show.”
Reflective of the attitude of Gastman toward artists in the community, he told Martin that if he made enough of them, he could place them in this show. “I think he was happy to hear that I was in my studio working. He’s been very supportive of it.”
color-drenched graphic/photographic collage style is featured with plenty of
space in large frames from Chicago’s Pose, who says he is letting photography
and geometry lead him away from his previous pop collage style that may have reminded
many of Lichtenstein. His inspiration here comes from his research into early
photos of graffiti writers running from police “I was
obsessed with John Naars photos and I have usually Norman Mailer as in
inspiration. Some of these photo references are from the Philadelphia Inquirer,” he says.
New York’s Eric Haze also dares himself to take a new direction with three canvasses featuring a refracted piecing-together of imagery and memories of this city in monochrome. Based on black and white scenes of the city by photographer and NYC taxi driver Matt Weber, the scenes capture aspects that are culled from imagination and impression. The centerpiece canvas captures an iconic piece of the Williamsburg waterfront that has been removed in the last few years by developers; the signage of the old Domino Sugar factory by the Williamsburg Bridge.
Mr. Haze said he meant it as a gift and tribute to
his wife, actress and longtime resident of the neighborhood, Rosie Perez who
used to see it along Kent Avenue as a kid. “He’s not afraid to take risks. He’s not afraid to go in the
studio and express what’s inside of him. When he brought me to the studio, he
says, ‘I have a surprise for you’,” she remembers. “I saw the beginnings of the
Domino painting and I was stunned into silence and I got teary-eyed.”
An expanded version of the show that first mounted
in Los Angeles last year, the collection is focused a great deal on the
American history of graffiti with a balance of East/West coast graffiti history
– in a way that may remind you of 2011’s “Art in the Streets” at LA MoCA. That
makes sense, considering Gastman co-curated that show as well.
“It’s both a historical and current look at where
the culture went and where it started and how widespread it is,” says
co-curator Evan Pricco, who perhaps provides a lynchpin view toward the big
name Street Artists who continued to push expectations in the 2000’s on streets
and in commercial galleries around the world. “With the space spread over two
floors it has a way better curatorial sense. I also think it does compete with
museums because it shows that this kind of work is on the same level. You kind
of have to present it in a way that feels very institutional and archival.”
So is Beyond the Streets
a graffiti show or a Street Art show or a contemporary art show? For artist
Kenny Scharf, who first gained attention during the heyday of Downtown
Manhattan’s art scene that benefitted from an interlude where rents were dirt
cheap and Wall Street was on a cocaine high, there is no need to categorize
what kind of art this is.
“You know I never liked labels or titles anyway so
even back in the early 80s I was pegged like ‘oh you’re a graffiti artist,’” he
says. “People feel the need to title and label so I’ll
let them to continue to do that but I don’t fit into any of them and I don’t
want to. I want to fit into all of them and none of them.”
Streets opened June 21 and continues through the summer.
Martha Cooper’s work as exhibited at Beyond The Streets New York
Beyond The Streets NYC is now open in Williamsburg, Brooklyn to the general public and will run until August 2019. Click HERE for schedules, tickets and details.
Gastman’s Massive Graffiti and Street Art Show Arrives at Epicenter.
“I’m really excited to bring this show to New York,” says curator, graffiti historian and urban anthropologist Roger Gastman, “because the city plays such a pivotal role in the origin and evolution of the culture. The iconic images of covered subway cars made graffiti famous worldwide.”
He’s talking of course about “Beyond The Streets” the hybrid exhibition that he mounted in LA last year featuring the work of 150 who have proved to be pivotal to the evolution of a fifty year global people’s art movement that includes graffiti, street art, and urban contemporary art. Filling over 100,000 square feet of new space in Brooklyn, this two-floor cross-section survey will feature artworks by many of the same vandals, graffiti writers, Street Artists, and art activists who hit NYC streets, created dialogue with passersby, and were sometimes chased by the authorities. To see them showcased here is to recognize that there is not just one route to take – in fact there are many.
“We have an incredible roster of artists for New York,” Gastman tells us, “and a brand new space in Williamsburg that has a stunning view of the Manhattan skyline as our backdrop.” Notably the lineup includes artists whose work BSA has documented on the streets in this very same neighborhood over the past two decades, including Shepard Fairey, Faile, Swoon, Bast, Invader, Aiko, and others. Ironically the appearance of free-range Street Art in the neighborhood has been seriously diminished since that time.
The exhibition is one more verification that a significant portion of the scene is being widely recognized for its cultural contribution and value in the contemporary art canon – a significantly fluid scene fueled by discontent and a desire to short-circuit the established routes to audience appreciation. Like large survey shows elsewhere, the takeaway is the significant impact street culture and its tangential subcultures continues to have on the culture at large.
Gastman says the New York version of “Beyond The Streets” will take an
additional interest at the role of music and art activism on the street, along
with immersive installations, a tattoo parlor, a special Beastie Boys
installation with artifacts and ephemera, a new 30th Anniversary
Shepard Fairey project “Facing The Giant: 3 Decades of Dissent,” and large
scale works by Gorilla Girls, Futura, Cleon Peterson, and Takashi
More news coming on programming and events, but the important opening date to know right now is June 21st.
“All in all, it will make for a really special show this Summer,” says Gastman.
BEYOND THE STREETS TEAM
Curator: Roger Gastman
Co-Curators: Sacha Jenkins SHR, Evan Pricco, David CHINO Villorente
A-ONE, AIKO, Al Diaz, Alexis Ross, Alicia McCarthy, André Saraiva, Barry McGee, BAST, Beastie Boys, Bert Krak, Bill Barminski, Bill Daniel, BLADE, Broken Fingaz, Buddy Esquire, buZ blurr, Carlos Mare, Carl Weston, Cey Adams, C.R. Stecyk III, Charlie Ahearn, Chaz Bojórquez, Claudia Gold, Cleon Peterson, COCO 144, Conor Harrington, Corita Kent, Craig Costello, CRASH, DABSMYLA, Dan Witz, Dash Snow, DAZE, DEFER, Dennis Hopper, Dondi White, Doze Green, EARSNOT, Estevan Oriol, Fab 5 Freddy, FAILE, Faith XLVII, Felipe Pantone, FREEDOM, FUTURA 2000, Gajin Fujita, Glen E. Friedman, Gordon Matta-Clark, Guerrilla Girls, HAZE, Henry Chalfant, Herb Migdoll, Husk Mit Navn, INVADER, Jane Dickson, Jason REVOK, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jenny Holzer, Jim Prigoff, John Ahearn, John Fekner, John Tsombikos, Joe Conzo, José Parlá, KATS, KC Ortiz, Keith Haring, Kenny Scharf, Kilroy Was Here, LADY PINK, LAZAR, LEE Quiñones, Lisa Kahane, MADSAKI, Maripol, Mark Gonzales, Mark Mothersbaugh, Martha Cooper, Matt Weber, Maya Hayuk, Michael Lawrence, MIKE 171, MISS 17, Mister CARTOON, Nina Chanel Abney, NOC 167, Pat Riot, Patrick Martinez, Paul Insect, POSE, PRAY, Rammellzee, Randall Harrington, RETNA, Richard Colman, Richard Hambleton, RIME, RISK, Ron English, Ruby Neri, SABER, Sam Friedman, SANESMITH, Sayre Gomez, Shepard Fairey, SJK 171, SLICK, SNAKE 1, SNIPE1, STAY HIGH 149, Stephen Powers, SWOON, Takashi Murakami, TAKI 183, TATS CRU, TENGAone, Tim Conlon, Timothy Curtis, Todd James, Trash Records, UGA, VHILS, and ZESER
The show is developed in partnership with Adidas and Perrier. Additional support provided by Modernica, Montana Colors, NPR, NTWRK, Twenty Five Kent and WNYC.
If you are a New Yorker feeling the burn it could be the Hasidim who lit fires every two blocks in parts of Brooklyn Friday to mark Passover (see our final image). The smoke and ash were staining sidewalks and wafting through neighborhoods until being washed away with the Purple Rain Friday night, or maybe those were just the collective tears of so many who were mourning the sudden death of a loved one, Prince.
“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today, to get through this thing called life,” he inveighed to us in the beginning of one of his songs, and we’re going to have to find a way to celebrate his life when this heaviness passes, but for now a black lacey veil seems more appropo. Yes, Street Artists have begun to put up their tributes, and we hope to have some fine examples to show you next week. The one featured here by Pussy Power was actually up before he passed away.
So here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Balu, Bast, Christina Angelina, Dain, Dee Dee, FTW, Icy & Sot, Irwin Bakx, Kid Super, Kuma, Purge, Pussy Power, ROA, Star Fightera, Thomas Allen and Wall Play.
Banksy has ventured into the entertaining resort business. One that would possibly be your last resort.
A scathing social and political critique of any number of targets that routinely come under the purview of this artist/curator/commentator/showman, this big tent brings everyone inside for a beating. Rampant capitalism, civic hypocrisy, the war industry, advertising deceit, an encroaching police state, environmental destruction, the widening gap in social equality, xenophobia with its inherent racism, and our insatiable penchant for sunny denial are a partial list of woes addressed. If you don’t feel sickened or guilty after visiting Dismaland perhaps you could affect a certain smugness that says, “Finally, someone is talking about all of these important issues that I’ve been going on about.”
Cheerfully cynical and sarcastic, this magic kingdom is most successful when you are challenged to reconsider a behavior or position – and with 50 or so invited co-exhibitionists, some whose bodies of work are substantial on their own, Banksy clearly intends to challenge you and indict you with a relentless barrage of over-the-top funhouse symbolism and metaphor. If, for example, you are enthralled by those American right-wing Christian Halloween “Hell House” installations that feature pregnant teen girls in stirrups and sallow-faced gay HIV-positive patients in hospital beds you’ll cherish the harrowing Banksy path to salvation. Alas, there may be no salvation, sorry.
Here you can see bright yellow bathtub ducks swimming in an oil spill, there you can play paparazzi with the other flashing bulbs recording Cinderalla’s overturned carriage crash. Next, get a load of the toy boats dangerously overloaded with refugees and the knife-wielding butcher eye-balling the horses he’s riding with on the merry-go-round. If Disneyland clobbers you with candy-covered bromides and implausibly rosy fantasy, Dismaland brings you to the edge of the abyss of man’s folly and gently nudges you to fall into it. Or jump.
Particularly effective to the experience are the grim and listless personnel who mind the grounds and offer no clear or meaningful help. Not quite menacing, they could just be impersonating sullen teens. Perhaps they are buckling under the weight of low wages and dim opportunities on the horizon or are simply humiliated by the balloons some are made to carry that say, “I’m an Imbecil”.
On a particularly gray and dreary day periodically warmed with the sun, the photographer named Butterfly made her pilgrimage to this nightmare fairy tale by the seaside for the big opening and below she shares with BSA readers her images and observations on the pop-up exhibition to help us all feel a bit of the dreadful experience first-hand.
Weston-Super-Mare is a British seaside town, 30 minutes from Bristol, where families spend the day out donkey riding, visiting the Seaquarium or trying arcades at the Pier while kids build sandcastles on a muddy beach in miserable weather.
Rumors had been circulating for weeks about big installations being built in the former Tropicana, a derelict lido closed since 2000 which once hosted the biggest outdoor swimming pool in Europe. The rumblings and the build up to the announcement to the show was phenomenal, along with the conjecture: Is it a film set? Is it a show? Is it a fair? Is it art?
Finally we know: This is Banksy’s biggest show to date: Dismaland. It is, according to promotional materials “is a festival of art, amusements and entry-level anarchism.”
Moving towards Contemporary Art, the show is billed as a ‘Bemusement Park’. The global scale, diversity of installations, artworks and participating artists is unprecedented with 50 contemporary artists from 17 countries aiming to exhibit contemporary art and raise discussion about consumerism, political and environmental issues and to spur people to take action.
1000 lucky local people were invited to experience Dismaland before its’ opening to the general public. Concurrently the online ticket sales failed miserably, with the website crashing all day and earning it the award of ‘the most disappointing new website’.
We first enter the premises through a cardboard security control room built by Bill Barminksi where the security staff asks the most random questions. After the clearing security, doors open to a sinister derelict place with trash, paper on the floor and mud. It almost looks like a dump. The surrounding staff members are dressed in pink hi-vis (vests) and are looking bored, miserable and haggard. Some are holding David Shrigley’s ‘I’m an Imbecile’ balloons. When asking questions, they respond by whispering messages that are beyond understanding. Customer service is below standard and not responsive at best.
Surrounded by murky water with a dumped riot van that has been transformed into an impromptu water fountain, a decrepit fairy-tale castle ‘shows how it feels to be a real princess’. A sinister scene of a Cinderella pumpkin crash sculpture is lit up by the swarm of paparazzi, with flashing cameras taking photo after photo of the tragic crash scene, echoing Princess Diana’s death. You may also pose with it and have your souvenir photo of the experience.
The amusements are purposely confusing – as they don’t let you win. An ESPO sign reads
‘WINNING IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED’. Arcade fans attempt miserably to score some of the bling necklaces by shooting spray cans, only to realize that they are screwed to the wall.
Some local families were confused with Banksy’s Mediterranean Boat Ride, where the public can drive robotic boats of migrants amongst floating bodies. Kids tried to play on Paul Insect‘s overcrowded sandpit while others were desperately looking for disappearing golf balls on the impossible Mini Gulf course. Families enjoyed rides on the merry-go-round without noticing a butcher sitting next to a hanging horse draining blood with cardboard boxes marked Lasagnes (a nod to a horse food scandal in 2013).
Alongside the rides, contemporary artworks are displayed throughout the site. There is also a large indoor space hosting 3 galleries with a selection of some of the best contemporary art. A circus tent features a freak show of strange animals from Polly Morgan and Dorcas Casey to a unicorn by Damien Hirst and a Banksy animatronic rabbit that makes the magician disappear.
The seaside and funfair themes have been given a certain twist as well: A statue of a woman being attacked by seagulls (Banksy), a giant ice cream cone (Ben Long), a wooden carved horse sculpture (Maskull Lasserre), a beach ball floating above razor sharp knives (Damien Hirst), a seaside painting showing a mother and child playing on the sand unaware of the tsunami of detritus coming toward them (Banksy).
Environmental issues and relationships between human and nature are also highlighted with artworks from Paco Pomet and Josh Keyes. A Banksy killer whale sculpture is jumping out of a toilet peace. Other topics addressed are on war, geopolitics, and the Arab Spring. Artists from Palestine and Israel are displayed side by side. Within the Guerilla Island, the dome presents of series of activist banners from all over the world, including drawings from Iranian cartoonist Mana Neyestani.
A bus turned into a touring Museum of Cruel Objects curated by Dr. Gavin Grindon educates the public on surveying the role of design for social control, including CCTV. And you can sign up to one of the union stalls for action. Finally there is the mind-blowing model village installation by James Cauty called The Aftermath Dislocation Principle.
The evening turned into a big party with live music while a massive show of fireworks sealed the official opening. I found the experience to be overwhelming with so much artwork to discover and actions to be taken.
Summer interns are younger than ever this year in NYC!
Thought you would like to see this video that Huffpost made last week as the FAILE show was about to open. Literally it was the day before the opening and behind the scenes people were running around like cats at a rocking chair convention. But you wouldn’t know it by the calm and friendly demeanor of Patrick and Patrick as they show 9 year old interviewer Ada Donnelly how to play the games and make sure she gets the inside story on the Deluxx Fluxx Arcade. The concept is genius! Read the full story HERE:
Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening :
1. THIS IS NOW – Endangered Species
2. David Walker in Nancy, France 3. Phnom Penh Murals with Cambodian Urban Art Institute
4. A Primer – The FAILE BÄST Deluxx Fluxx Arcade
5. Drunken Collaboration with Sr. X and Zabou
BSA Special Feature: THIS IS NOW – Endangered Species
Endangered species have been called attention to by Street Artists in recent years, most notably ROA and his large murals around the world, but even Brooklyn local QRST has pasted his paintings of endangered frogs on streets as commentary of our negative effects on entire species, continuously messing with ecosystems and now possibly threatening our own existence.
This short film focuses on a campaign by artist Louis Masai Michel working on the streets of London as part of a funded campaign with Synchronicity Earth, who “support on-the-ground conservation action and creates spaces for cognitive dissidence, working alongside artists, young people, conservationists, activists, film-makers, scientists and enlightened business-leaders to co-create a world in which all life is valued, regardless of economic ‘worth.’”
David Walker in Nancy, France
David Walker just created this mural in Nancy, France to support his current show with Galerie Mathgoth. Not a strict adherent to the École de Nancy , Walker has a craft of his own with aerosol cans that actually bring features and expressions to a life-like quality, all the while eschewing traditional tools of the painting trade. Shout out to Karl’s beard.
Phnom Penh Murals with Cambodian Urban Art Institute
French artists Théo Vallier and Chifumi were invited to gather Cambodian and International graffiti artists to create murals on Phnom Penh’s walls this April and this video gives a good summary of the events. On the streets were new works and collaborations by Chifumi et Théo Vallier, Peap Tarr & Lisa Mam, Tones, David Myers, Koy, Venk, Eltono, and Alias 2.0.
More information of this event sponsored in part by the Institute Francais HERE
The FAILE BÄST Deluxx Fluxx Arcade – A Primer from Miami Beach 2013
If you are wondering what you will see opening July 10th at the The FAILE BÄST Deluxx Fluxx Arcade and throughout the summer at The Brooklyn Museum, here is a good primer from an installation of it they did in Miami Beach in 2013. We’ve seen the new installation that Faile and BÄST are currently preparing for you, and we can tell you that it is like this, but MUCH MORE.
Video Directed By: Priest Fontaine
Shot By: Noah Carlson & Priest Fontaine
Edited By: Priest Fontaine
Music By: Seth Jabour
Drunken Collaboration with Sr. X and Zabou
They say that this is based on a true story, and one you may have heard of before. We’re not sure if they are advocating alcohol abuse or against it , but it’s always a cheery surprise to hear The Dead Kennedys, isn’t it?
A powerful group of images this week as we do a drive by on Labor Day Weekend in New York. We know it’s the last weekend of Summer but hell no! I’m gonna have another strawberry ice cream out on the stoop.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Alma’s, Anthony Lemer, Arnaud Montagard, Alice Pasquini, Bast, BLY, Cesar Mieses DALeast, Dek, Jerk Face, Paul Insect, Pete Kirill, Ryan McGinness, Sean9Lugo, Seymour Chwast, Solus, Swil, Tripel, Willow, Wing, and You Go Girl!
“This is my latest wall, painted in Syracuse, Sicily with the support of the Istinto Naturale cultural association,” says Alice Pasquini of this new tableau.
“Titled ‘The myth of Arethusa and Alpheus’ it was inspired by the spring of Arethusa in Ortygia (Syracuse), a body of fresh water close to the seashore. The legend says that the nereid Arethusa, trying to escape the advances of the river god Alpheus, fled by turning into a stream, eventually breaking ground in Ortygia where Alpheus found her and was able to mingle in her waters.” ~ AP
Let the mingling begin! Although you have to admit that she doesn’t look like she’s quite committed to the idea.
We start this weeks collection of images from the street with a new piece in Bushwick by Joe Iurato, a New Jersey based Street Artist who also, as we learned via press release this week, has been selected to co-curate the newly announced Mana Museum of Urban Arts in Jersey City with another stencillist on the street, Logan Hicks. Billed as the first museum of its kind, Director Eugene Lemay says it will be comprehensive and interactive and programming will begin as early as this September.
Mr. Lemay and co-founder Yigal Ozeri have expressed and demonstrated a sincere affinity and enthusiasm for the creative spirit since Mana Contemporary opened here in ’11 and this 100,000 square foot space represents just the audacity of hope that is demanded when building a stage for urban/street/graffiti art and its multitude of tributaries. New York and this entire scene is about 5-10 years overdue for this kind of bold development and we say, nevermind the armchair critics, let’s get going!
Here our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Art is Trash, Bast, Bio Tats Cru, Bishop203, Charlie Chaplin, Crash, Damien Mitchell, Dan Witz, Forest Ghost, Freddy Sam, Hiss, Hot Tea, Joe Iurato, King, Li-Hil, LMNOPI, Nick Walker, Olek, Paper Skaters, Shepard Fairey, Skount, Stinkfish, Tripel, and Zola.
“Recently South Africa celebrated the 20th anniversary of freedom day commemorating the first post-apartheidelections held on that day in 1994.They were the first national elections in South Africa in which the franchise did not depend upon race.
My mural is of a photograph taken on this day in 1994.With a flock of birds flying through the middle representing freedom.Showing that to be free we need to work together, we need to live together.
Freedom is to be human. And to be human is to be connected.
My mural is not celebrating Freedom day but rather looking at what freedom really means and how far we really have come and how free we really are within South Africa and within a global context” ~ Freddy Sam
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Aine, APC, Bast, Billi Kid, Dain, David Shillinglaw, Dee Dee, Dennis McNett, Droid, Enzo & Nio, Kaws, Li-Hill, Seazk, Stikman, and Wing.