All posts tagged: Berlin

BSA Supports Paste Up Festival 2019 Germany in Berlin

BSA Supports Paste Up Festival 2019 Germany in Berlin

BSA is in Berlin again to help an international grassroots Street Art effort like the Paste Up festival this September. Open to artists around the world, the event is organized by artist Senor Schnu – who is providing this platform that encourages artists who work in the medium of paper to submit work for the Berlin to paste up – even if you don’t live in Berlin.

Drop off your work if you live nearby, or mail it to:
Kultur Spaeti.
Gabriel-Max-Straße 13,
10245 Berlin,
Germany

Come to the opening on September 6, 2019 (beginning at noon (12 Uhr)) to paste up your work or assist to paste up the work of your international brothers and sisters. The festival is supported by @kultur_spaeti @deinestadtklebt.de and @bkstreetart. The event is organized by artist @senor_schnu.

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BSA Images Of The Week: 04.07.19

BSA Images Of The Week: 04.07.19

Many images this week are from our short visit to Querétaro, Mexico this week – where, among other things, we saw first hand many of the murals mounted by the festival Nueve Arte Urbano over the past few years.  Each festival around the world is unique to its local culture – with the possible exception of the highly commercial ones that are self-styling as a franchise of cool McArt dipped in tangy “Street” flavored sauce. We had a good survey of this mural/street art/graffiti scene in the context of Mexico’s historic mural masters, and a true sense of how counterculture can be embraced by so-called “mainstream” culture for the betterment of both.

In short, the DNA of this festival is not about self-promotion but engaging community in meaningful dialogue, respecting tradition of indigenous culture, and embracing the modern day rebels who have brought art to the streets in myriad ways. Combined with an unprecedented 101 photo exhibition of graffiti, Street Art, and urban culture mounted on the streets that was too meta for our brains, we saw people walking the walk, not just talking the talk. We only wish we had more time, and a drone!

Additionally this week we have a few more favorite shots from a quick trip to Berlin last week. Berlin is basically Brooklyn’s sister city and it was also in the full throes of Spring, with long lines at the all-night dance clubs way after the sun came up. This weekend it looks like Brooklyn is warming up too – almost beer garden time!

Until then, let’s head over to Bamonte’s for a vodka martini with the fine men and women of what’s left of Italian American Williamsburg here in Brooklyn. This is an institution that’s 119 years old lined with framed photos of famous Italian Americans and celebrities who ate there like Telly Savalas and that guy from the Sopranos!

No music, only the clinking of glasses and animated storytelling and some people who may have been dining here when the Dodgers were still in Brooklyn – all eating lobster tails, shrimp cocktail, clams oreganata, iceberg lettuce salads, pastas, meat balls, fish, sautéed porkchops, scalloped potatoes, green beans, chicken parmesan, and blueberry pie or tiramisu. Okay it’s not five star, you big hotshot, but it’s at least as good as your Aunt Rosa’s kitchen, amiright? Bamontes not good enough for you now, you big Broccolini?

And the portions, my god, you won’t need to eat again until Good Friday.

So here’s our weekly interview with the street, this time featuring 007, 1UP Crew, Calladitos, City Kitty, Clown Soldier, CS SZYMAN, Deih XLF, drsc0, Ger-Man, La Madriguera Grafica, Mantra, Nespoon, Paola Delfin, Santiago Savi, Victor Lopez, and Voxx Romana.

007 Unicorn in Berlin (photo © Jaime Rojo)
1UP Crew. Urban Spree Berlin (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Mantra. Detail. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Mantra. Detail. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Calladitos. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Eduardo Ruiz . Santiago Savi. Detail. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Eduardo Ruiz . Santiago Savi. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Unidentified artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Victor Lopez / La Madriguera Grafica. Detail. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Victor Lopez / La Madriguera Grafica. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Paola Delfin on the dome. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Tania Quezada . Diego Afro-Cruz. Detail. Nueve Arte Urbano / Centro Cultural Manuel Gomez Marin. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

SC SZYMAN. Urban Spree Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Ger-Man. Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
NeSpoon. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
City Kitty . Clown Soldier . Dr. Drsc0 (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Ali Six. Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Deih. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
VOXX. Urban Spree Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Untitled. Queretaro, Mexico. April 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
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Vox Graffiti Roars in Berlin with New Fanakapan x 1UP Collabo

Vox Graffiti Roars in Berlin with New Fanakapan x 1UP Collabo

Berlin streets are regularly teeming with the Vox Graffiti in shouting chaotic profusion – and have been for decades. The bubbling laughing raging hordes proffer a visual conversation that often roars, and you’ll have to yell to get your voice above the rest.

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

1UP and Berlin Kidz are two of the graffiti crews who reliably blast out their viewpoint, each with a uniquely unmistakable cadence and flair. This week one gilded the urban stage while the other was transformed upon it by British guest star Fanakapan with a ringing whoop, and with the angelic welcome of Alanis at the entrance, the Frühling party of Berlin is in full bloom.

Set upon a newly opened urban arena in Kreuzberg (thanks to the demolishing of a building adjacent to it) the actual bubble letters that distinguish the guileful Londoners’ letter style now rise above the rubble with multi-colored glee. Spelling out the 1UP letters in a way they never could, his interpretative take is framed by two runners of Berlin Kidz translation of Pichaçao-style colored cryptic tagging.

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“As one can imagine this was just to good to be true,” says Sam Walter of YAP Productions, the organizers and facilitators of the lift and permissions. “Yes we did have problems with a security and also police since we had no official paper which gave us permission for the wall – but we got a couple of confirmations via phone calls,” he says with all the reassuring confidence of a Cheshire cat .

Together with the rest of the steel-spined-velvet-clad YAP posse, the 1UP crew and Fanakapan were celebrating on this vast muddy lot ringed in concertina wire as the sun set one night this week. Word spread quickly and the reunion at the wall felt like 50% Graffiti God magic mixed with 110% adrenaline helping everyone ignore the psychotic spring weather that warms you one minute and converts you into a popsicle the next.

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The original motivation for the collaboration is based on an one-year-old idea between 1UP and Fanakapan, says Sam, “bringing those beautiful, shiny, giant 7-meter “1UP’ letters. These are young artists who take on a lot of risk to push the graffiti culture beyond its boundaries.”

“No animals, plants or 1UPs were harmed during this production,” quips the charismatic cultural curator and YAP team member Denis Leo Hegic as he texts process shots of the wall to the squad as the secret/public wall goes up.

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“1UP carries the zeitgeist of Berlin out into the world like no other contemporary collective. The DNA of the crew is rooted in the streets of Kreuzberg, but the group also developed into a global family,” he says. The statement is only partial bravado, as a serious graffiti head in many cities will be able to tell you a rooftop, elevator, or train line that they’ve seen hit by the amorphous and amazingly anonymous crew that seems to shape shift and reconstitute itself – evidenced here where their enormous tag is painted by another artist entirely.

BSA: Is this a tribute piece to 1UP or is it a collaboration?
Denis Leo Hegic: It’s gravity graffiti. Collaborative and collective work is already included in their spirit “one united power”. Fanakapan managed to portray it in such a powerful and gravity defying way and gave us the largest 1UP letters hovering weightlessly over Berlin. 1UP is a ubiquitous tag in Berlin. You can’t help but be aware of it.

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo

BSA: Did the authorities take any interest in visiting the site when Fanakapan was painting the tag, perhaps thinking that it was actually 1UP painting?
Denis Leo Hegic: We had quite an interaction with the local law enforcement. However, all the officers that appeared on site were being alarmed by other people and did not come on their own initiative.

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

BSA: How did you get permission to paint on this wall?
Denis Leo Hegic: Through the intelligence of many. We managed to thrill lots of good, curious and courageous people who made everything possible: from a large wall in the center of Kreuzberg to the entire production. Fanakapan was extremely motivated and he literally blew those balloons up the wall.

BSA: Previously there was a building in front of the current wall. Now the whole wall is fully exposed, showing fully the long-running Alanis angel piece. Was any consideration given to the Alanis piece while planning the 1UP piece?

Denis Leo Hegic: Absolutely. I hate when some people say “curating a wall” or “curating a mural” – that’s such utter nonsense! How can one person possibly “curate” one single painting on one single wall? However, this wall succeeded to curate itself naturally. It’s a great composition with the two vertical stripes by Berlin Kidz on each side of the piece and being held by the Alanis angel from the ground. With Fanakapan’s addition of the 1UP bubble tag it became a marvelous “Kreuzberger Mischung” (Kreuzberg Mixture).

Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Fanakapan x 1UP Crew adding to the wonderful and long running Alanis’ angel and the classic Berlin Kidz columns. Berlin. March, 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
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Fanakapan Pays Tribute to His Dog in New UN “One Wall” in Berlin

Fanakapan Pays Tribute to His Dog in New UN “One Wall” in Berlin

It was a name used by my mother when I was growing up,” says the British Street Artist as he talks about his new mural for Urban Nation in Berlin. “She used to call my sister Fanny Fanakapan – it was just sort of a term of endearment,” he says.

Fanakapan. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. One Wall Project. (photo © Nika Kramer

It’s a cold/rainy/sunny/windy/calm Monday and we’re in the thick of Aprilwetter here at the end of March, and Fannakapan is stirring old memories to recall his entirely unusual name for Nika Kramer, the photographer who has captured these shots.

“I know there was this song made in wartime by a lady named Gracie Fields about a useless man named Fred Fanakapan, he says. “So it’s been stuck in my head from a very early age. I always had tag names that were sort of something to do with my family – like the name I had before this was TRIPE because my granddad used to say “that’s a load of tripe!” – which refers to a cow’s stomach.”

Fanakapan. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. One Wall Project. (photo © Nika Kramer)

The new mural, part of the ongoing “One Wall” program by UN, features his signature chrome texture – this time as a heart shaped balloon. He tells Nika why he’s positioned the cartoon character Snoopy, based on the Charles Schultz comic strip, looking quizzically at his own reflection in the balloon.

He says that with this mural he is actually giving a tribute to his own dog, which he credits with giving him love and support during a tough time in his life.

“It is kind of dedicated to her. At the time I was quite unhappy and she cheered me right up so basically I say that I believe in dog. I called the piece “Believe in Dog”.

Fanakapan. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. One Wall Project. (photo © Nika Kramer)

Fannakapan talks more about the two dimensional dog quizzically gazing up at the balloon and points out that the background is taken directly form the location. “I took the photographs next to the wall so it’s reflecting the trees and the buildings around it. When I do that I think it always makes the local people appreciate it more to see their street reflected in something.”

Our special thanks to Nika Kramer for sharing her talents with BSA readers here.

Fanakapan. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. One Wall Project. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Fanakapan. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. One Wall Project. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Fanakapan. Urban Nation Museum Berlin. One Wall Project. (photo © Nika Kramer)

And now lets sit down to the Victrola to listen to the original song about Fred Fannakapan by that inimitable Lancaster lassie, Ms. Gracie Fields.

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Various & Gould: Broken Screens, Shattered Social Scenes

Various & Gould: Broken Screens, Shattered Social Scenes

“Catastrophe or salvation?” asks Various and Gould. “Being offline is scary and disastrous to most of us, however for some of us it might evoke the feeling of freedom through digital detox.”

Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)

A departure from their typical work and on-the-street installations, the Berlin duo are taking over advertising spaces and bus shelters with images of broken, smashed crystals of digital phones. The smart phone displays are transferred using the venerable intaglio print technique at a large scale, transforming the shattered smart phone displays into works of art.

Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)

“We love the beauty and the random and unique structure of the damaged displays,” they tell us of the new works that are illuminated from behind and contain none of the typical insignia or clever ad copy that evoke desire in consumers.

Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)

Perhaps more subtle than the activist messages of other hi-jackers of private ad space in public space, these images of brokenness are meant to draw our attention to the fragility of our devices as well as our tenuous connection to the ephemeral information we so greedily consume from them daily.

Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)

Not only are these broken screens, they indirectly could be interpreted as a critique of our broken social scenes that have been shattered and fragmented by our slavish reliance on these small glowing rectangles.

Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)

Part of a campaign they entitle simply, “Broken Screens” the two say we could stand to consider the power we have given to our smart phones – a charge which may seem obvious but we may actually overlook.

“It also discloses the flaws of these devices, which we use every day almost 24/7 and which we carry around on every occasion,” they say. “The project really attracts us, having raw destruction and dysfunction as a starting point.”

Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)
Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)
Various & Gould. Broken Screens Project. Berlin. (photo © Various & Gould)
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BSA Film Friday: 02.22.19

BSA Film Friday: 02.22.19

Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.

Now screening :
1. Escif: Magic Piano
2. Adele Renault: St+Art India. Lodhi Art Festival 2019
3. Jeff Koons at the Ashmolean Museum
4. OS Gemeos: Flying Steps at Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin

BSA Special Feature: Escif: Magic Piano

Spanish Street Artist Escif creates a museum installation that uses irony, sarcasm, and deep truths that we’re not always ready to see.

By hi-jacking some of the current interactive nomenclature enabled by augmented/mixed realities and the normalizing of tablet use, he alerts viewers to the connection of age-old mineral mining that is just as contemporary as the hi-tech gadgetry many have embraced.

Since you can use the device to contemplate human suffering and make music, it is an indictment of modern attitudes that dehumanize and turn real stories into a video game.

From the artist:

“Coltan is a mineral, found specially in eastern Congo, used to make cells and computer chips. Violent rebel groups are exploiting coltan mining to help finance a bloody civil war which is now in its 12th year.

The link between the bloodshed and coltan is causing alarm among high-tec manufacturers slowly they are beginning to realise that their products may contain the tainted fruits of civil war. Since the outbreak of fighting in august 1998: an estimated 5.4 million people have died; 45.000 continue to die each month; Children account for 47% of these deaths.

Magic Piano is a music installation. With the help of a tablet (that obviously contains coltan) you will be able to play the piano. Use the device to navigate on the wall. When you pass on the screen over a charater, a sound will be activated. If you push the character with your finger a sound loop will be activated. You will also activate the animation of each character.”

Adele Renault: St+Art India. Lodhi Art Festival 2019

A couple of weeks ago we shared with you new photos by Adele’s mom of the Street Artist painting this wall for St+Art India in New Delhi. Today we share a video made of her installation.

📺Lodhi Art Festival 2019 || Adele RenaultAdele's imprints are visible in the winged beauties that now adorn the walls at Lodhi. Laying on a main arterial road know the colony, her birds now peek through the trees and woo passersby.Watch the film to get a closer look into her creative process! 📽 Pranav Gohill & Jay NuEdited by Filterkaypee Festival supported by Asian Paints.#artforall #startindia #startdelhi #startdelhi2019 #asianpaints #lodhiartdistrict #lodhiartfestival2019

Posted by St+art India on Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Jeff Koons at the Ashmolean Museum

“It lacks all the give and the breath of fresh art,” the bespectacled art critic intones with all the weight of a final damnation.

“We need haters out there. They are affirmations that we’re doing something right,” says the streetwise pop star with clever sunnies and sans big hat.

Taking a break from the Banksy beat, Doug appears to put forth that supposition that Jeff Koons is proving once again that as long as you are a white guy and you reference European art history you are 80% on your way as an artist whose work will be collected and exhibited.

OS Gemeos: Flying Steps at Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin

A splendid hybrid that sends heartbeats racing, even involuntarily, here is a trailer for Flying Steps and Os Gemeos as they interpret Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition”, the famous piano composition that has become a showpiece for virtuoso pianists. Good to see museums of contemporary art truly stretching, redefining the street and Street Art.


Another interpretation by ELP from December 1970.

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Berlin in Stations: The Music of the Streets (Video)

Berlin in Stations: The Music of the Streets (Video)

Contemporary Berlin is a city of many faces. It’s vibrant and intoxicating. It feels safe and welcoming. It’s raw and sleek, organic and planned, clangorous and calm. It’s also joyfully permissive, allowing space for you to create, discover and explore- even as the locals complain of the shadow of gentrification that is cast upon the bohemian enclaves.

While we can’t call Berlin a second home we can say that we have fallen in love with it. We especially treasured the friendships that we forged with many talented artists and creatives who have come to the city to explore their ideas and to take their risks, climbing walls (some of them literally) to make things happen.

Berlin, it seems to us, is teeming with energized young, middle aged, old people from all over Europe and beyond who have come here to this nerve center to open the creative power that we’re going to need to seize back the Earth from darkness.

Sweeping, kinetic, full of life and teeming with possibility, this is the Berlin that many find at this moment, a series of stations to discover and celebrate.

With direction by Diego Gueler (Sasho) and musical score balancing by Matías Córdova, here is their love letter to Berlin.

“Berlinstation is a ticket to enjoy and get excited with the urban art and street musicians of the capital of the cultural avant-garde of Europe. A trip of video art, photo-animations, timelapse, slowmotion and landscapes of the city intertwined with talents without borders.”


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Nils Westergard Paints One of “The Unforgotten” with Urban Nation, Berlin

Nils Westergard Paints One of “The Unforgotten” with Urban Nation, Berlin


“endangering the morality and purity of the German race”, said §175 of the Criminal Code when referring to gay people.

Lies like that persist in other countries today, as does persecution of sexual minorities. The World Economic Forum in 2018 said that 73 countries still outlaw homosexuality, despite the move to legalize same-sex marriage in 26 others.

Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)

This Sunday was worldwide Holocaust Remembrance Day and the new portrait painted by Belgian-American Street Artist Nils Westergard for Urban Nation  museum is that of a victim of the Nazis who was made to wear the pink triangle sewn onto his concentration camp uniform.

“I was digging through images of camps and prisoners for a few days,” says Westergard of his search for the right image for this 2 meter wide, 6-story high wall in Berlin.

Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)

“There are only so many that are classified as homosexuals or for sex crimes in general,” he says as he describes needing to incorporate a pre-existing sculpture of 200 metal origami birds that form a triangle into the composition by artist Mademoiselle Maurice.

He says that he ultimately discovered the image of this individual, a 32-year old locksmith named Walter Degen who was born January 4, 1909. While it is known that he was at Auschwitz and transferred to Mauthausen, it is not known if he survived the Holocaust.

Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)

Today we shout Walter Degen’s name from the rooftops and from this new wall to remind us how wrong we humans have historically been and how much we have learned, how much we still have to learn. We’re proud of Mr. Degen’s memory and honor his right to have loved another Mr.

Our thanks to photographer Nika Kramer for sharing her excellent images of this wall with BSA readers.

Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)
Nils Westergard. “The UNforgotten” Urban Nation Berlin. One Wall Project. Berlin, Germany. 2019. (photo © Nika Kramer)

URBAN NATION x Nils Westergard:
The UNforgotten – Edition 1


Thanks to Yasha Young, Urban Nation Director.

URBAN NATION MUSEUM FOR URBAN CONTEMPORARY ART.

With support of “Faces of Auschwitz” project.

About “The Unforgotten”
The wall at Bülowstraße 94 follows a very special leitmotif: it is a memorial for the victims of the Nazi regime, who were persecuted, abducted, imprisoned and murdered for homosexuality. This memorial wall in the LGBTQI-influenced neighborhood of Berlin-Schöneberg will over time transform again and again, as a reminder.

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Michelle Houston, BSA Wishes And Hopes For 2019

Michelle Houston, BSA Wishes And Hopes For 2019

As we draw closer to the new year we’ve asked a very special guest every day to take a moment to reflect on 2018 and to tell us about one photograph that best captures the year for them. It’s a box of treats to surprise you with every day – and conjure our hopes and wishes for 2019. This is our way of sharing the sweetness of the season and of saying ‘Thank You’ to you for inspiring us throughout the year.


Today’s special guest:

Michele Houston, enfant terrible, storyteller in the Queen’s English, curator at Monumenta festival Leipzig, at Zwitxhermaschine Gallery in Berlin, for this years very successful Wandelism, and co-founder of Berlin Art Society.


In times where the world seems to have gone mad, with segregation rather than inclusions and the unthinkable such as Brexit becomes a reality.

The photograph I selected is a night street view of the exhibition: “Bonjour Tristesse” by artist KITRA.

The show is titled after the infamous graffiti just off Schlesisches Tor (Berlin), which has crowned the building opposite the exhibition for the past 37 years, which translates to hello sadness and seems to embody the zeitgeist of now.

The public from all walks of life were invited to literally walk in to an artwork, as the walls, ceiling and floor were painted by the artist. It was an exhibition like a candy shop, where one could immerse themselves inside of an artwork.

In 2019 I wish for more colour and light to break through the impending darkness.

Artist: Kitra

Location: Berlin, Germany

Date: 29.04.2018

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Pascal Feucher, Wishes And Hopes For 2019

Pascal Feucher, Wishes And Hopes For 2019

As we draw closer to the new year we’ve asked a very special guest every day to take a moment to reflect on 2018 and to tell us about one photograph that best captures the year for them. It’s a box of treats to surprise you with every day – and conjure our hopes and wishes for 2019. This is our way of sharing the sweetness of the season and of saying ‘Thank You’ to you for inspiring us throughout the year.


Today’s special guest:

Pascal Feucher, Impresario, articulate thought-leader, badass Founder of the Urban Spree compound in Berlin, Germany


Pixação is a form of graffiti rooted in the São Paulo underground, a rough colonization of verticality by writers who are prone to take extreme risk on makeshift scaffolds but usually, as in the sub genre of balcony writing, without any form of security. It is the most extreme form of graffiti in a sense where you put your own life at risk for the thrill of the game, in a time where street art becomes more and more colonized by branding and consumerism.

The photograph is also important as it marks the first collaboration between São Paulo’s Os Cururu and Berlin-based Paradox (Berlin Kidz), two of the most important pixacão writers who united their skills to invade Berlin in the summer of 2018.

The photograph was taken In Berlin Kreuzberg by @cpt_olf, whose remarkable photographic work is based on documenting urban exploration in extreme altitude, and specifically the works of the Berlin Kidz.

Artist: Berlin Kidz

Title: Signal

Location: Kreuzberg, Berlin. Germany.

Date: Summer 2018

Photographer: CPT Olf (@cpt_olf)

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Strøk in Studio: Isometric Figures, Stencils, and Old Doors in Berlin

Strøk in Studio: Isometric Figures, Stencils, and Old Doors in Berlin

Strøk! If you can say it you should shout it!

And you’ll have to shout it if you want Street Artist Anders Gjennestad to hear you from his perch 60 meters high above you upon the The Victory Column. Berliners call the bronze woman at the center of this six lane traffic circle Victoria, and Strøk has climbed the 282 steps up a spiral staircase to sit at her feet many times to shoot his models down below.

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“I like to shoot there because it’s very open and you can move around and there are shadows going in many directions throughout the day,” he says as he shows you images of his subject on the ground on his computer back in the studio. “ He moved and then the shadows are going the other direction- the sun stays there quite late so it’s nice. You pay like three Euros to get in there but its usually not that busy.”

Sequestered in a high ceilinged room of a former school on a sleepy street in the city, the Norwegian transplant has found his home in Berlin for the last few years and he gladly shows you around recent stencils, his custom tilted cutting desk, a crushed car hood now readymade sculpture/wall hanging, and stacks of old heavy doors that he’ll be painting on sooner than later.

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“All of these doors are taken from abandoned houses,” he says amidst stories of urban and ex-urban adventures with friends on the margins of the city spray painting and salvaging.

“We rent a van and I go with my neighbor and bring all the power tools and batteries,” he says of the work that sounds a little like the harvesting he must have done back home on the farm in Norway. It occurs to you that the recycling of materials is also very ‘green’.

“Yeah we put on a fluorescent jacket and a little helmet,” he says as he shows you weathered and deteriorated slabs of wood with occasional metal moldings or hinges, patterns and markings. Like this one he found in a dumpster.

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“I also just find things on the street like this one that a carpenter has used as a cutting board under his work. It has all these handwritten measurements on it – these are good canvasses as well. It wouldn’t be so interesting for me to paint it out of fresh canvas,” he pauses. “That’s why I am a fresh garbage collector.”

The deep baritone and thick shaggy mop add to the story as he narrates his way around the studio and a fall breeze wafts in through the casement windows that remind him of his early days shooting models out of them to the sidewalk a few floors below. His unique technique of capturing movement from above and transforming it isometrically onto other planes has distinguished his street works in countries like Lebanon, Portugal, Taiwan, Iceland, France, Denmark, Italy, and others.

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

It has also brought his figures that are barely tethered to the ground except by their shadows to private collections and gallery shows like his most recent solo exhibition “Gravity” at Galerie Friedmann-Hahn here this summer.

A single image may result from 1,000 photos, he says, all shot overhead with an eye for unusual bending and foreshortening and a surprise. He used to shoot friends or strangers but now more often hires a model and gives them scenarios over the phone from above.

“I have an idea and I ask him to do things,” he says, “but it’s more of the stuff that they do in between when they’re not thinking about it that I find most interesting.” He walks over to a new piece with a figure in a striped shirt, his head obscured and his limbs hanging off the edge of the board that he is using as canvas. “Like this guy putting on his sweater. That was something I didn’t think about before I saw the photos. And I think that’s interesting. So I like stuff that just happens.”

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

BSA: So it’s the unscripted moment that you are looking for?
Strøk: I try not to give too much direction anyway. I’m always kind of up in the tower and then I called him and I told him to do some things. But it’s the in between things when he is doing things that I didn’t think about or plan I always shoot and then when I come back and look at all the pictures I pick the one that I want.

It is a cyclical pattern he describes as his life in between special sculptural projects or commissioned installations; Salvaging garbage, shooting models, cutting stencils, spraying new canvasses.

“If I had a normal job I would find it hard to justify spending all this time digging in bins and finding garbage, dressing up like a construction worker-and cutting stuff off the walls,” he says with a satisfied expression.

“I love doing all of that and I like to paint so it’s good to have those two interests tied together.”

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Anders Gjennstad STRØK. Studio Visit. Berlin. September 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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BSA Images Of The Week: 10.14.18

BSA Images Of The Week: 10.14.18

BSA-Images-Week-Jan2015

Hope it isn’t trite, but don’t give up on your dreams – that’s what Street Artist AJ Lavilla advises in this piece on the sidewalk in Brooklyn. Dude and Dudette, this life can kick the stuffing out of you or just gradually wear you down, but we encourage you to keep you eyes on the prize! You can do it, in fact, you must.

In addition we have a Kiwi (Owen Dippie) in Brooklyn and an Australian (Lister) in Berlin this week. In fact, most of what follows is from a recent visit in that city we think of as a sister to Brooklyn – the chaotically beautiful Berlin. Special thanks to Various & Gould for helping us ID some of these works as well.

So here is our weekly interview with the streets, this week featuring AJ LaVilla, Anthony Lister, Crypoe, Hyland Mather, Marycula, Owen Dippie, OXOX, Pappas Pärlor, Styro, and Vyoky.

Top Image: AJ Lavilla (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Owen Dippie (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Anthony Lister in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Styro in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Styro standing on Push in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Hyland Mather in Moscow for Artmossphere Biennale 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

VYOKY in Moscow. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Pappas Pärlor in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Pappas Pärlor in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Pappas Pärlor in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentidied artist in Moscow. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

OXOX in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Crypoe in Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

La Rouille at Urban Nation Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Care at Urban Nation Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified artist (but it looks a lot like Carlos Mare’s B Boyz. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified artist memorial in Moscow. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Marycula at Urban Nation Berlin. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

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