All posts tagged: Bio

BSA Film Friday: 09.13.19

BSA Film Friday: 09.13.19

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

Now screening :
1. “Word on the Street” Debut
2. INO – “Freedom For Sale” in Athens
3. Two in a Row from Alex Prager: “La Grande Sortie” & “Despair”


BSA Special Feature: “Word on the Street” Debuts

“Fuck the old days. Graffiti is now!”

The last five years have been explosive for Street Art worldwide, and with “Word On The Street” you have a good indicator that the graff writing game is alive and well in New York as well – and tenaciously prolific.

Anonymous filmmakers infused the doc with vibrating audio and visual distortion and a sense of ever-present surveillance, or the implication of it cloaked in darkness. Interviews, late night runs, frozen wire fences, loose footing, bloody scrapes, and the sweet smell of aerosol lightly purring from cans across a shadowed wall. The labor of love for the filmmakers is the only thing that pushes a project like this to fruition. And fumes of course.

It’s first public screening is coming up September 29 in Brooklyn. Click HERE for more information.

It’s first public screening is coming up September 29 in Brooklyn. Click HERE for more information.

Featuring 143, AJES, BIO, BRAT, CASH4, CARL WESTON, CLAW, CHRIS RWK, DEK 2DX, DIVA, DSR, EDO, EL7, FAES, FLASH, JAKEE, JESUS SAVES, KLOPS, LEX, LOOSE, MERK, MRS, MUTZ, NEG, NOXER, PANIC, PLASMA SLUG, POE, SCAE, SEO, SILON, SMURFO, SPRAY, STOR, STU, and VEW.

INO – “Freedom For Sale” in Athens

Constantino Mass adds just the right amount of slickly pounding wipes and cuts to this installation by INO in Athens. We published photos from this a few days ago so have a look and enjoy the video.

Two in a Row from Alex Prager

Alex Prager debuted a new short film at Lehmann Maupin Gallery in New York this month, and it has piqued the interest of many in her work of disconnected, reconnected narratives. Impeccably styled, humorously shot, it’s a staged invoking of old Hollywood and street scenes, enveloped in drama and frequently suspense. Often the LA born director provides just the deconstructed portion of the scene you have seen, and keeps reworking it in surprising ways. Go to the gallery to see the new “Play the Wind”. Below are two of her short films from five and nine years ago respectively.

“La Grande Sortie” by Alex Prager

“Despair” by Alex Prager

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BSA Images Of The Week: 06.02.19

BSA Images Of The Week: 06.02.19

June is Rose month in Brooklyn, and stoops, parks, and back yards are booming with them. Bushwick streets are booming with new murals this weekend with the 8th Annual BUSHWICK COLLECTIVE Block Party. Also New York had 130,000 rat sightings since 2010. Which is still less than the number of artists here, so nice try, rats. See you on the streets!

So here’s our weekly interview with the street (or boardwalk), this time featuring BG 183, Bio, BR163, Crash, George Rose, Indie 184, Love Pusher, Nicer, Nick Walker, NS/CB, PHibs, Remi Rough, Rubin415, Steph Burr, and Tats Cru, yo!

Bio TATS CRU for The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Crash . BR163. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
NS/CB (photo © Jaime Rojo)
NS/CB (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Remi Rough (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Phibs . George Rose (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Biggie Smalls (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Slick style from Love Pusher. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Nick Walker spills some magic in the Bronx (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Tuff Stuff from SacSix (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Rubin 415 . Sinxero (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Renks (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Solus (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Solus. WorldPride Mural Project Initiative. The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. Bronx, NY (photo © Jaime Rojo)
TATS CRU . BG 183 . BIO . Nicer. WorldPride Mural Project Initiative. The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. Bronx, NY (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Steph Burr. WorldPride Mural Project Initiative. The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. Bronx, NY (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Indie 184. WorldPride Mural Project Initiative. The L.I.S.A. Project NYC. Bronx, NY (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Untitled. June 2019. The Bronx, NY. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
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Jardin Rouge: A Unique Garden for Street Artists to Grow In

Jardin Rouge: A Unique Garden for Street Artists to Grow In

The soil in this garden is a deep rich red hue, as is the lifeblood that pumps through this modern compound with echoes of Egyptian mastaba architecture. Jardin Rouge invites Street Artists, graffiti artists, and urban artists to step around the peacocks that strut around the grounds of this North African oasis and to come inside to paint.

Painting outside is encouraged as well.

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Hendrik Berkeich AKA ECB. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

25 minutes outside of Marrakesh in the middle of a 32 acre olive grove, this is an artist’s residency unlike many, where vandals are invited. They also are encouraged to push themselves creatively and develop their skills, techniques and try new disciplines outside their comfort zones.

Created and funded largely by one visionary collector, a private French businessman of Russian heritage who says he discovered his own love of graffiti using china marker on city walls while he was a homeless teen in the 1960s, the residency stands apart from others in the full spectrum of support and direction it gives.

From French portrait stencilist C215 and German aerosol portraitist ECB to members of New York’s graffiti stars Tats Cru to the Franco-Congolese painter Kouka, the aerosol atmospherics of Benjamin Laading and abstractly juicy tag clouds of Sun7, the commonality of these street practitioners is their willingness to experiment, and their drive to produce quality work. Quietly building a reputation with this invitation-only residency, high quality shows marketed directly to collectors, and a new ambitious museum space with the Montresso Foundation, Jardin Rouge is setting its own standard.

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C215. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“When artists come here we ask them to express themselves in their own style. The second thing we ask is to concentrate on the quality of their work and the craft. I don’t like artists who don’t take care of their quality, I don’t respect them,” says Jean-Louis, a white maned lion with firm opinions and an empathetic gaze.

“Also it is about presentation – a lot of artists have no idea how to present their work – but we always talk to the artist about how to make their final presentation, their final work.” When he describes this dynamic, you realize that as an artist, no matter what level of professionalism you enter Jardin Rouge with, it will raise a notch or two by the time you leave.

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Kouka. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Speaking to current and former artists-in-residence, it’s clear that it is a tight ship with an expert crew. All materials, needs, and ideas can be discussed, and there is a focus on professionalism and readiness for development. Sun7 (or Sunset), a dynamic expressionist and graffiti writer who still runs a fatcap and a thick marker across city walls in Paris, London, New York as well as the occasional corporate brand gig, told us on a recent Saturday morning that he had gone into Marrakesh the night before to party with friends until sunrise, but he was determined to get into the studio by 10 am regardless. “These guys give us so much and I want to make sure I’m giving my best back too.”

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Sun7. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Jean-Louis purchased the area near the Ouidane village in 2003 and began coaching his first artist in 2007, not realizing that the guidance he was giving to one would grow into the double digits in terms of artists who he now works with. The Montresso foundation is essentially sponsored by its founder and by donations from different partners and art collectors.

“At the beginning of Jardin Rouge this was my hobby. Then artists began hearing about this little by little and asking if they could come for a residency. We began the project slowly and became perhaps more professional and expanded our team,” he says. Collectors were slow to come as well, but eventually that changed thanks to well-attended openings, studio visits, and a marketing push that produces print catalogues and video pieces about the artists.

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The Montresso Foundation on the grounds of Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“We started to do something more attractive and more people began to hear about this, and also collectors began to hear about it. We have a lot of collectors and they are not necessarily so interested in street art per se but when they come to a place like this their perception of street art begins to change.”

BSA: We have noticed that it is very important here to encourage artists to test themselves in new mediums that maybe they are not comfortable with but it is perhaps your philosophy to encourage them to do something outside of their normal practice. Can you talk about that because it is not something that we normally see.
Jean-Louis: At the beginning the idea was to meet with some young artists, some street artists and to give them the possibility to make something. I never want to encroach on their technique. You have your talents you have your technique. But slowly I began asking artists to please try to do something that was not in the street, perhaps with canvas or for something else. This was the idea in the beginning – to help some artists to grow.

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TILT. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“It is a place to do something different from what you are doing in your own studio,” says TILT, who has had two residencies here, and who is intensely working on two concurrent shows with Jardin Rouge this year. “I think the good thing is that you don’t have the environment, you don’t have the pressure that you have when you are in your own studio, in your own city and surrounded by people you know.”

During an interview we did with him there we found that a familiar story continued to emerge; a supportive environment can actually make artists dream bigger.

“So here you can try and you can fail,” TILT says. “And if you fail its okay – it’s part of the game. It’s a huge space and maybe you don’t have to think about all of the materials because it is also easy to get them here. The structure is so well managed that if you need something, something is going to come to you. So you think totally differently, it is like a “deluxe” studio. Your mind is not stopped because you thought ‘oh I wanted to do that but I can’t’ because the frame is going to cost too much… or I need 6 or 7 people to help me move this car from one room to another. So its like everything is possible and that can really open up your mind.”

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Steven P. Harrington of BrooklynStreetArt.com interviews TILT. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The Toulouse, France-born graffiti writer speaks from his own experience since the centerpieces of his new two-location show required cutting an entire car in half, reconstructing and stabilizing it, and mounting the half cars in two locations in two countries.

“When we decided to do the giant piece, the big car, I also wanted to experiment with something, to try to work with a different material, and since I think my work is kind of dirty – dirty graffiti, primitive graffiti – far from what Street Art can represent – I think that my work needs more knowledge about the history of graffiti, about the letters, about the texture, about accumulation. I had never worked with drywall and these other materials – it’s a super difficult medium to work with and so I thought that Jardin Rouge was probably the right place to try to make it work.”

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TILT. Detail. Montresso Foundation. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The “Voyage Aller Retour (Outbound and Return Trip)” show was constructed over many weeks and made at Jardin Rouge studios, with the “Outbound Trip” shown at the Marrakesh Biennale this spring and the “Return Trip” half shown for the Epoxy event at Musée Les Abbatoirs in Toulouse, France in June.

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TILT. Detail. Montresso Foundation. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Each half of the car is piled comically high with worldly goods that are tied to the roof, and the entire car with possessions is sprayed with aerosol graffiti tags, throw ups, bubble letters and drippy callouts to peers and their family members. Two directions of migration are represented, with one carrying home-made and natural goods and articles that a family in the country may bring to the city, and the other transporting the electronic entertainment and consumer goods that a metropolitan family car might bring to relatives in the country. It’s a metaphor in degrees that addresses first and third world migration as well and a graffiti-covered touchstone that indirectly speaks to the refugee crises affecting war-torn Syria and much of Europe

Writer and cultural critic Butterfly describes TILT’s “Voyage”; “He is fetishizing an object, the Peugeot 404 car, appreciating it for its properties regardless of its practical, social and cultural interests. Tilt sanctifies the object by vandalizing it; he breaks down the unstable and fluctuating barriers of the work of art.”

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TILT. Montresso Foundation. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

We had the opportunity to see “Voyage Aller” mounted inside the new spacious and modern museum-quality Montresso Foundation building and TILT’s eye-popping explosion of color held its ground in the massive new modern space. For the team and the foundation partners, this inaugural show with an accompanying outdoor garden and terrace also showcases Jean-Louis’ unique and powerful vision as architect as well.

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TILT. Detail. Montresso Foundation. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Alongside the reflecting pools and pens for horses, goats, cows, and other farm animals is a statue of a huge geometrically planed gorilla and painted facades with colorful character-based graffiti scattered across the property and popping in and out of view overhead. From atop one of these red roofs you can observe a wide hazy basin spreading for many kilometers south to the foothills of the snow-capped Atlas Mountains an hour and a half’s drive by car.

Manicured lawns, cacti, palm, and olive trees frame wending walkways that lead through the one or two story buildings and into the many indoor spaces and breezeways that connect artists studios, living quarters, guest accommodations, entertaining rooms, an ample dining area, production and professional offices. It all feels like a gallery and changing series of installations, indoors and out. As we walk with Elise Levine, the communications manager, throughout the buildings we see walls hung with canvasses of Jean-Louis’ collection and others of artists who have had residencies here.

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TILT in the middle with Mr. Harrington on the right and a guest on the left standing in the lobby of the Montresso Foundation. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

In these surroundings it is not difficult to imagine how artists can make the transition to contemporary art without losing their personal connection to the street. The sensual Fenx splashes pop beauties with thick tagging, Tarek Benaoum manifests calligraffiti as something ornamental and precise and Kashink’s comic characters make wisecracks in front of you, each with four eyes. With Elise’s personal warmth and knack for storytelling about artists and installations, the Moroccan wood cabinetry, mid century modern furniture, patterned textiles, and specially designed light fixtures all impart a non-restrictive peaceful environment.

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Jo Ber. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

We had the opportunity to see an eclectic handful of the artists studios, which all come equipped with materials and tools that enable the artists to do their work and not worry about the typical concerns of artists life.

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Kashink. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Benjamin Laading leads us into his studio, about the sized of a family one-car garage, but with a full wall of window that allows the sun to flood the space with light. A Norwegian painter who says he still writes graffiti he is working here on capturing the impressive forms known to fat cap sprayers everywhere, the bending of light in waves of a tube-like pointillism. In fact, that’s what he is turning it into.

“I started to think about how I could look at and talk about the tag – the core of graffiti that is the first line, the expressive line on the canvas,” he says as he pulls out his newest studies of this momentary movement of a gestural spray technique.

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Benjamin Laading. Detail. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Each canvas captures a momentary movement, but each is actually carefully hand-rendered with refined dabbing over a longer period of time to achieve the exact effect. It is a tribute to the untamed wildness of quick tagging by graffiti artists but he hopes to delivery a galaxy inside the spray.

“They are always pushing me to do experiments,” he says, “I tried to find natural movement that looks like it was drawn very quickly.” The twist is that he recreates them with a brush, painstakingly pointillizing the dust and the energy that swoops across the canvas as a painting. After all, he says, “The spray stroke is made out of an accumulation of dots.” The effect is stark and energetic, atmospheric, and structural.

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Benjamin Laading. Detail. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“It’s really a laboratory for a lot of artists to try something new here,” says Estelle Guilié, the artistic director since joining in 2014 and producing the first Jardin Rouge exhibition entitled “Behind the Red Wall” featuring a graffiti-heavy roster including BIO, BG, CEEK, and SY along with stencil artist ECB and warrior painter Kouka.

“We have one artist here who uses canvases for example all the time and I said to him ‘hey man for 20 years you have worked on the same medium and you don’t have your own signature. Maybe if you reflect on your work you can choose another language to express your art. He tested something new here for the first time and he has had a lot of success,” she says with a smile, “and now he can continue with it.”

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C215. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Finally, it strikes one that the entire complex is a diary, a philosophy of making work and the process of discovery. Sometime when Street Art / and Urban Art enters into a place, it dies. Here it feels alive, and many times just as consequential as it can be on the street.

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The Gold Fish pool provides serenity and inspiration. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“It would be a great present to us if after 4 or 5 years someone sees one of these works by an artist and they say, ‘This artist was at Jardin Rouge, – or Montresso Foundation – and for this person it will stand for a label of quality,’” says Jean-Louis. With the establishment of the Montresso Foundation exhibition space, plans are afoot to develop larger exhibitions and the expansion of a permanent collection that reflects the movement of urban art into the contemporary art realm – obviously with an eye for what comes next.

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TILT. Montresso Foundation. Jardin Rouge, Morocco. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

This article is a result of Brooklyn Street Art partnership with Urban Nation Museum For Urban Contemporary Art in Berlin and was originally published at Urban Nation Museum For Urban Contemporary Art

A partial list of Jardin Rouge alumni:

310
Benjamin LAADING
Cédrix CRESPEL
CEET
Denis TEVEKOV
FENX
GODDOG
Hendrik BEIKIRCH
JACE
JO BER
KASHINK
KOUKA
MAD C
Neurone
POES
RESO I Cédric LASCOURS
Roxane Daumas
SY I Vitaly TSARENKOV
Sun7
Tarek BENAOUM
TATS CRU
TILT
Vitaly RUSAKOV

 

 

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The Bushwick Collective Turns 5

The Bushwick Collective Turns 5

BSA has been promoting and supporting The Bushwick Collective and the artists who paint there from the very beginning.

Before The New York Times. Before Time Out. Before The Daily News and many other news or culture outlets. Before there were any videos of Joe Ficalora telling his story. Before Social Media turned every private act into an object for mass consumption. Before the street art tours. Before Street Art was a cottage industry in our borough.

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Case MaClaim (photo © Jaime Rojo)

As we celebrate five years of Bushwick Collective we have a question for you: Do you remember it’s original name before he changed it to Bushwick Collective? Joe contacted us out of the blue one day to ask us to curate some walls with him and to help him contact some artists and we immediately sensed a determination in Mr. Ficalora that was stellar. However, we never could have envisioned the huge daily festival it has become or how many people would celebrate or malign it.

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Case MaClaim (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Bushwick Open Studios was already in full effect by that time – another artists’ effort we were among the first to support – and Manhattan art fans were beginning to make the trek a little further out on the L train to Bushwick now that Williamsburg had been clobbered by consumers by the late 2000s.

The first Bushwick Collective party had a DJ and 10 muralists. Jim Avignon, KLUB 7, and Gabriel Spector among them. Unofficially included was the huge “return” of COST, who slammed an entire defunct garage shop with posters and paint – a site that he often returned to in the months that followed to revise and expand.

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Case MaClaim (photo © Jaime Rojo)

It’s been a rollicking and sometimes rocky ride with the Collective, with mostly the voices of fans and few detractors, including silly art-school gentrifiers who bemoaned the gentrification that these murals brought to the neighborhood. Also local graff writers felt disrespected or overlooked by what they perceived as an invasion, and you can’t blame them for feeling that way.

Mostly, it has been a celebration of the creative spirit in these twenty-teens in Brooklyn and we all know that this too is a temporary era, as New York is continually reinventing itself. Enjoy these murals smacked cheek-by-jowl for block after block by an international train of talents running through Bushwick today, because they are here for you to enjoy in this moment. Like David Bowie wisely told us, “These are the golden years.”

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Nychos. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Nychos (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Joe Iurato and Logan Hicks collaboration. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Joe Iurato and Logan Hicks collaboration. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Joe Iurato and Logan Hicks collaboration. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Li-Hill (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Celso (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Don Rimx (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Sipros. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Sipros (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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D*Face (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Damien Mitchell (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Atomik (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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FKDL (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Dasic (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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BG183 . Tats Crew (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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NICER . DAZE . BIO . Tats Crew (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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CRUSH . Tats Crew (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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JMR (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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KLOPS (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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NEPO . CORO (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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BSA Images Of The Week: 06.05.16

BSA Images Of The Week: 06.05.16

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It’s Bushwick Collective Weekend Yo! The assembled faces and artists is local, national, international – a melange of what Brooklyn has become in recent years and the streets are alive with involved citizenry in search of entertainment, art and community. The Street Art scene is alive and well, just mutating weirdly as it always does; charges of commercialism and the whitening power of gentrification notwithstanding. A little further out in BedStuy was the #PrincePartyBK yesterday with Spike Lee celebrating the Purple One’s birthday, along with a lot of Biggie love, and Muhammad Ali love, and you, Love.

Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring 1Penemy, BG183, Bio, City Kitty, Coro, Crash, GIZ, JMR, KLOPS, Loco Art, Marie Roberts, Nepo, Nicer, Samantha Vernon, Sheryo, Tats Crew, The Yok, Thomas Allen, Tristan Eaton, UNO, XSM, and You Go Girl!

Our top image: Marie Roberts for Coney Art Walls 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Unidentified artist’s portrait of Muhammad Ali who passed away this Friday. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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BG183 TATS Crew for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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CRASH TATS Crew for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Nicer TATS Crew for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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BIO TATS Crew for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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“Oh my God, I am totally getting a selfie with this. No one back in Nazareth will believe this. Suurreeusly.” KLOPS for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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JMR for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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NEPO . CORO for The Bushwick Collective Block Party 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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GIZ. Joe Ficalora The Bushwick Collective founder with his BFF Pope Francis. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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You Go Girl! (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Protestors at the entrance of the Brooklyn Navy Yard have been drawing attention to their opinion that the Duke Riley “Fly By Night” art project with Creative Time is cruel to the pigeons in some way and that the animals are being exploited for profit. Riley has reportedly consulted pigeon clubs, an avian veterinarian, experts from animal welfare groups and been given a good review from the Audubon society so the opinion does not seem unanimous. Regarding the charge of making a profit, we’re pretty sure all the tickets are free, right? Our favorite one is the sign that also insults the artistic quality of the project as “mediocre.” Oh, gurl, you did not manage to throw some shade while protecting those birds did you? Snap! (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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XSM (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Pizza on the run. The Yok and Sheryo shot through the driver’s seat of a parked UPS truck. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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UNO. Marseille, France. May 2016. (photo © UNO)

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Thomas Allen, partially obscured by some green buffing. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Thomas Allen (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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City Kitty. A mash up of two giants of rock whom we lost withing months of each other this winter/spring – with that intuitive third eye. “You will be missed” (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Prince. Is VJZ the signature of the artist who painted the portrait? (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Unidentified Artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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“The monster within and the fool that follows.” Heard that. Tristan Eaton for Coney Art Walls 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Samantha Vernon for Coney Art Walls 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Is there a story behind this, or simply a fantasy scenario? 1Penemy (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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“I hate your negative energy”.  Unidentified Artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Loco Art (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Untitled. Brooklyn Navy Yard. Duke Riley’s Fly By Night performance with pigeons in collaboration with Creative Time. Brooklyn, NY. June 2016. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

 

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BSA Images Of The Week: 05.18.14

BSA Images Of The Week: 05.18.14

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Here our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring AEON, Arturo Vega, Bio Tats Cru, Balu, Bifido, COL Wallnuts, Crash, Federico Cruz, JMR, Kram, Kronik, Labrona, LMNOPI, Meca, Moby, Muro, Nick Walker, Stinkfish, TRN, Txemy, and Vexta.

Top Image >> Rooftop piece by Crash, Bio Tats Cru and Nick Walker. The shot was taken from a higher rooftop. A straight shot would have landed this photographer in the slammer and that would mean missing happy hour. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Crash, Bio Tats Cru and Nick Walker. Detail. Same piece as above taken from the street. See what we meant? (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Bifido new piece in Naples, Italy. “Don’t Forget to Play” (photo © Bifido)

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TRN…what can we say? (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Moby…yes that Moby. “Receiving” Dedicated to the memory of artist Arturo Vega. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Moby. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Balu (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Balu (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Balu (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Balu (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Ever feel like you need a mint? Vexta (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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A clamoring collaboration of color from Txemy and Muro. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Txemy and Muro collab. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Why, you little green eyed devil, you. KRAM (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Labrona new piece in Montreal, Canada. (photo © Labrona)

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Labrona new piece in Montreal, Canada. (photo © Labrona)

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Detail of a wall with a variety of wheat pasted art. Artist(s) Unkown, though we think we see Stinkfish in there. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Cruz (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Stinkfish . Meca . Kronik (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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JMR and Col Wallnuts revisit the spot where a JMR rode for a few years, and now expanded and redefined it. The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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LMNOPI (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Untitled. Brooklyn, NYC (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

 

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

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Unbridled Berlin Street Art : Spencer Elzey in Europe

Unbridled Berlin Street Art : Spencer Elzey in Europe

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Berliners are hard to crack, they say, but probably not for New Yorkers. We “get” them because of their no-nonsense frankness, sometimes sharp tongues, and because their “creative types” are unhinged in a way that New Yorkers have been historically.

When it comes to the volume and variety of art that is being loosed in Berlin these days, they are setting some standards that many are still catching up with. Right now when you look at the freewheeling expression that bolted out from a broken wall more than 20 years ago and never looked back, you realize that Street Artists in Berlin are not hard to crack, they may simply be a little bit cracked.

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Various & Gould (photo © Spencer Elzey)

In the third city of our series this week for Spencer Elzey’s residency on BSA, we visit Berlin, which some argue is the preeminent scene for urban art right now. It does appear to have a perfect mix for vibrant arts growth – a creatively permissive atmosphere and affordable lifestyle prevails in this city of design. And while uncommissioned public art is not legal, it is also not verboten.

The kids may come for the music and the art collectives and the dance parties, but they stay for the aerosol and the expressive faces and figures that accompany you while you walk. So far, people seem happy to let this arts scene continue to evolve and not surprisingly, tourists are magnetically drawn to it.

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Victor Ash (photo © Spencer Elzey)

As you walk through certain neighborhoods you may prepare to have your pre-conventions subverted and inverted. Awash with a decade plus of unbridled art, the scale, style, influences, and techniques of pop, illustration, and graffiti are all truly playing with each other.

Where a large spate of legal mural work has monopolized creative energies of many Street Artists in New York recently, some players have commented that the content is being tamed and neutered and the resulting scene is less risk-oriented stylistically. As you look at the work Elzey found in Berlin, you are reminded what it looks like when art laborers don’t have to self-censor or look over their shoulder. Also, it is still affordable for artists. Oh, wait, did we already mention that?

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Robi The Dog (photo © Spencer Elzey)

Out of the cities I visited the one that contrasted the most with NY was Berlin. It felt like a beautiful lawlessness with graffiti and rollers everywhere,” says Elzey as he tries to put his finger on the attitude of exploration and discovery that floods large areas of the city.

“Berlin by far had the most graffiti and Street Art in its most raw and authentic form, which is how I think it should really be experienced. It felt more free and genuine. Besides RAW and Urban Spree, which are commissioned areas, Berlin felt like a giant playground. There was graffiti and rollers everywhere and lots of abandoned factories to explore and have fun in.”

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Blu (photo © Spencer Elzey)

Berlin has been an international draw for artists and arts institutions for the last decade at least and many of the Street Art world make sure to head here at least once, sometimes staying months and couch surfing and partying an staying out all night.  Since the graffiti scene and the Street Art scene are not so polarized in the minds of people here there is also a freedom to experiment without fear of upsetting your peer group.

Luckily for BSA, local Street Artists Various & Gould were very hospitable and more than helpful and willing to tour Spencer around some of the hot spots and to give him some background on the Berlin streets. “Meeting someone you admire, be it an artist, musician, or actor, is always a special experience,” he says about being with V&G, “It feels a little different when that person is a Street Artist, or at least it does to me. The fact that part of their job means that they do illegal things, being trusted enough to be welcomed into their inner circle has deeper meaning.”

 

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Blu. Detail. (photo © Spencer Elzey)

So he was in good hands with these two who have deep roots with the artist community and who frequently challenge themselves to look at their own work with new eyes – and to find new ways to engage with passersby with their art and a bit of theater. “In the case of Various & Gould in Berlin and C215 in Vitry I was able to meet these artists on their own turf. They showed me some of their new work in their studios and then toured me around the neighborhoods that they know best,” he recalls with some delight.

“While seeing art on the streets is one thing, getting the first hand history behind it makes it more meaningful,” he says. “You get more history and depth that way.”

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Blu (photo © Spencer Elzey)

How long Berlin will continue to be a petrie dish for experimentation and discovery? Forever. Just kidding. But for the moment this ephemeral art movement is fiercely alive and more independent than many cities. Artists have always made life a bit of a moveable feast. Today its Berlin, tomorrow it could be Mexico City, or Lima, who knows?

“I think I would recommend it if you were a younger artist who was trying to break into the game and establish a name for yourself,” says Elzey.

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Blu (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Blu (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Blu (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Alaniz (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Herakut (photo © Spencer Elzey)

 

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Various & Gould (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Various & Gould (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Os Gemeos (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Nunca (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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JR (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Cooked (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Vhils (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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MTO (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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MTO (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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MTO gives Alias a shout out. (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Klone (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Neurotitan (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Vidan The Weird (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Tafe (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Reaktor and Paulo Ito (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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G (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Inti (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Ema Jones (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Klub 7 (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Broken Fingaz (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Blek le Rat (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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BLO (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Maclaim (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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ROA (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Otto Schade (photo © Spencer Elzey)

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Nychos (photo © Spencer Elzey)

Our sincere thanks to Various & Gould for their hospitality and time.

 

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Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!
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Images of the Week 03.10.13: Happy 70th Birthday Martha Cooper

“I can’t believe it. I never expected this, ever.”

The Houston Street Wall was the site of a sidewalk surprise birthday party Saturday  for photographer Martha Cooper, who was planning to stop by for what she thought would be a new mural shoot. The world famous graffiti photographer had no idea that artists How and Nosm had begun masking the letters of her nickname out of their mural at 7 a.m. to prepare for an all-star cast of some big graffiti and street art names from the last 4 decades to create a larger-than-life birthday card for her.

Thanks to speedy social media, a sunny early spring day, and her stature as an historic photographer of fortitude and integrity, the impromptu guest list ballooned throughout the day for this street side celebration, while the boisterous honking New York traffic rolled by.

Above: Happy Birthday Martha Cooper (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The “Marty” wall begins at the Houston Wall in NYC as How and Nosm buff their mural and mask out her name. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

By the time Martha and her cousin Sally arrived with wall organizer Meghan Coleman just after noon, the “MARTY” letters had already been half completed and she stood staring with mouth smiling and agape, waving at the cluster of photographers shooting her atop the Houston Street meridian. A second later she was laughing and racing across the street, camera in hand, ready to capture the painting action and get mobbed with well wishers. Cooper confessed to being pretty overwhelmed by the sight of her name so big. For her part, Sally, a confidant and buddy since they attended grammar school together in their hometown of Baltimore, busted out into tears.

How & Nosm at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Just inside of one day the famed wall that has hosted the likes of Haring, Scharf, Fairey, and Faile was suddenly regaled in eye-popping color and a variety of styles by Lady Pink, How and Nosm, Bio from Tats Cru, Freedom, Free5, Crash, Daze, Terror 161, Faust, and Aiko – producing a head spinning and sweet greeting to a person whom they all respect and admire for her work and determination. In addition to the steady flow of fans, writers, artists, bloggers and photographers asking to have a photo taken with one the few photographers of New York’s 1970s subway graffiti scene, a number of friends stopped by to have some birthday cake and watch the painting – like Wild Style director Charlie Ahearn, his brother artist John Ahearn, hip-hop photographer Joseph Conzo, and master sculptor Simon Verity, among others.

The brand new “Marty” mural is up for an incredibly short time, possibly only days, so if you have an opportunity or inclination, catch this personal and public display of affection for a lady who helped us all appreciate art in the streets.

Bio from the Tats Cru at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Crash shows his sketch for his portion of the wall. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko(photo © Jaime Rojo)

Crash at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Martha (center) arrives and gets a big surprise. Flanked by Meghan Coleman on the left and Cousin Sally on the right. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Davide (Nosm) greets Martha. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Faust at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Freedom at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Freedom signs a book and talks to a young admirer. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Daze at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Terror 161 at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Bio at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A possible devotee of the Seapunk movement walks past “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A New Yorker captures the action from the comfort of his taxi while waiting for the light to turn green. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Bio does the official birthday wish.”Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Lady Pink at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

How & Nosm at work. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Aiko at work, or rather, her shadow. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Laboutins and aerosol make a riveting combination for Aiko. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

All the artists with Marty. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Marty poses for us. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

BSA loves Martha Cooper. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko. (photo © Leah )

The final shot. “Marty” at the Houston Wall in NYC; A tribute to Martha Cooper in collaboration with How & Nosm, Faust, Freedom, Terror 161, Bio, Daze, Lady Pink, Free5, Crash and Aiko (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

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

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FUN FRIDAY 04.08.11

Fun-FridayThis weekend brings a Spring bounty of delicious  Street Art related openings in many cities across this great country of ours. But FIRST, this OLD SKOOL Romanic Boogie Down Production …

Pump Up the Sculpture Jam from SAM3

Sticker Phiends in AZ

Brooklyn-Street-Art-WEB-Sticker-Phiends-April-2011

Tempeh is a soy product and meat substitute originally from Indonesia. Tempe is a city in Arizona that is hosting the 4th giant Sticker Phiends show tonight. Stickers continue to grow in influence in Street Art and in private collections in black books and refrigerator doors and this is a cool show that gives them away and sells them. They have limited edition “Sticker Phiends” tee-shirts designed by Brooklyn street art collective Robots Will Kill. Also cold beer. Possibly tempeh too because Chris RWK is a good veggie.

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FREE HANDOUTS provided by our sponsors
ALL ART for $ale!
Limited Merch for $ale!
Drinks with ID – 21+

Opens at 8pm April 8th!
Cartel Coffee Lab
25 w. University Dr.
Tempe, AZ.
480-225-3899

Some of the names include:

Abcnt, Age, Dolla, DumperFoo, Dissizit/Slick, 123 Klan,Griffin One, Clown Soldier, Mad One, Mat Curran, MBW, 20 MG, Obey, Pez One (U.K.), Sike’, U.W.P., Seizer One

*********************************************************************

Martha Cooper Remixed

Brooklyn-Street-Art-WEB-Martha-Cooper-Remix-Carmichael-Aril-2011

How & Nosm interpret Martha Cooper’s original photo from the 1970s (both photos © Martha Cooper)

The Carmichael Gallery will be throwing a memorable opening party for Martha Cooper’s REMIX show and, lazy hyperbole aside, this one is one NOT to miss.

brooklyn-street-art-martha-cooper-remix-carmichael-gallery

Photographs by Martha Cooper

with

Original remixes of these photographs in a range of media by Aeon, John Ahearn, Aiko, Bio, Nicer & B-Gee, Blade, Blanco, Mark Bode, Burning Candy, Victor Castillo, Cey, Cekis, Claw, Cosbe, Crash, Dabs & Myla, Anton van Dalen, Daze, Dearraindrop, Jane Dickson, Dr. Revolt, Shepard Fairey, Faust, Flying Fortress, Freedom, Fumakaka, Futura, Gaia, Grotesk, Logan Hicks, How & Nosm, LA II, Lady Pink, Anthony Lister, The London Police, Mare 139, Barry McGee, Nazza Stencil, Nunca, José Parlá, Quik, Lee Quinones, Kenny Scharf, Sharp, Skewville, Chris Stain, Subway Art History, Swoon, T-Kid, Terror161 and more.

Carmichael Gallery

5795 Washington Blvd
Culver City, CA 90232

April 9 – May 7, 2011

Opening Reception: Saturday, April 9, 6-8pm

Click on the link below for more information regarding this show:

http://www.brooklynstreetart.com/theblog/?p=19900

Cern YMI in Greenpoint by Gandja Monteiro

ROA at White Walls in SF

Brooklyn-Street-Art-WEB-ROA-White--Aril-2011

Image of ROA in Salton City (© and courtesy of White Walls)

In San Francisco ROA will have his opening at the White Walls Gallery with his iconic paintings of nature’s marginalized animals in large scale. Ever the hard worker, ROA paints non stop year round all over the globe on surfaces that are challenging, like this one on the side of a mobile home. If you have only seen his art on line and if you are in San Francisco this Saturday, it’s your turn!

For more information about this show contact the gallery.

White Walls Gallery

835 LARKIN ST.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA. 94109

Phone: 415.931.1500

Chor Boogie in Washington DC

While the Rich Man Party of NO! brings the country to a halt in the Capitol, Chor Boogie will be bringing much needed healing color to Washington DC at The Fridge Gallery.

brooklyn-street-art-WEB-Chor-boogie-the-fridge-gallery

The Fridge Gallery Presents: Chor Boogie “This Aint No Place For No Hero” (Washington, DC)

For more information about this show click on the link below:

http://www.brooklynstreetart.com/theblog/?p=19952

Chor Boogie is an artist, a conceptual genius, a street romantic, a master of illusion and technique, Chor Boogie is an original. His works can be described as having healing effects by his unique and unmatched use of color, which brings greater meaning and understanding to his works. Every vibrant piece has a story attached to it. Chor Boogie’s colorful paintings are attracting A-list celebrities, art galleries and museums. Originally from San Diego, the artist known as Chor Boogie currently resides in San Francisco but is an internationally known artist and has traveled extensively to exhibit his work around the world.

The Fridge is located at

516 8th Street, SE

REAR ALLEY

Washington, DC 20003

David Ellis and Blu in a collaboration of a loop video from 2009

Yo Son the Boyz from Queens are Comin out With New Jams Next Month!

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Carmichael Gallery Presents: Martha Cooper “Remix” (Culver City, CA)

Martha Cooper
brooklyn-street-art-martha-cooper-remix-carmichael-gallery

Photographs by Martha Cooper

with

Original remixes of these photographs in a range of media by Aeon, John Ahearn, Aiko, Bio, Nicer & B-Gee, Blade, Blanco, Mark Bode, Burning Candy, Victor Castillo, Cey, Cekis, Claw, Cosbe, Crash, Dabs & Myla, Anton van Dalen, Daze, Dearraindrop, Jane Dickson, Dr. Revolt, Shepard Fairey, Faust, Flying Fortress, Freedom, Fumakaka, Futura, Gaia, Grotesk, Logan Hicks, How & Nosm, LA II, Lady Pink, Anthony Lister, The London Police, Mare 139, Barry McGee, Nazza Stencil, Nunca, José Parlá, Quik, Lee Quinones, Kenny Scharf, Sharp, Skewville, Chris Stain, Subway Art History, Swoon, T-Kid, Terror161 and more.

Carmichael Gallery

5795 Washington Blvd

Culver City, CA 90232

April 9 – May 7, 2011

Opening Reception: Saturday, April 9, 6-8pm

For Immediate Release:

Carmichael Gallery is pleased to announce Martha Cooper: Remix, an expansive group show featuring highlights from Martha Cooper’s photographic archive and works by over 50 artists who have created their own unique interpretations of her iconic, historically significant imagery. There will be an opening reception for the exhibition on Saturday, April 9 from 6 to 8pm with Martha Cooper and several of the participating artists in attendance. The exhibition will run through May 7, 2011.

Martha Cooper, Photographer of Art on the Streets for Six Decades

Written by Steven P. Harrington, this article is featured in tasj vol ii – issue v.

The daughter of a Baltimore camera store owner, Martha Cooper’s romance with photography began in the 1940s when bobby-soxers and penny loafers were the sign of edgy youth culture. Her dad, an amateur photographer himself, gave his small girl a camera and together they hit the streets in search of adventure. “Yeah, my father used to take me out and we would take pictures. That’s what I thought photography was…we were just looking for pictures,” she recalls. Six decades later, Cooper is still looking for pictures; meanwhile, many works from her archive are cited as pivotal recordings of the birth of hip-hop culture and its plastic art form, graffiti.
During the cultural upheavals of the 1960s, Cooper earned a Bachelors of Art degree in Iowa, taught English for the Peace Corps in Thailand and rode a motorcycle from Bangkok to obtain a graduate degree at Oxford. As a freelancer and staff photographer in Japan, Maryland and Rhode Island in the early 1970s she moved to the media and art center of New York City to catch bigger fish. Landing a job on the staff of The New York Post in 1977, she discovered that the resistant and competitive boys club of photographers there were reluctant to countenance this scrappy young woman shooting hard news stories and Studio 54 celebrities.
Hungry for discovery, Cooper would spend her time to and from assignments in bombed-out neighborhoods, where she took pictures of kids entertaining themselves with games they devised on the street, often with the humblest of materials. It was during one of those trips that she stumbled on graffiti and the members of its community. She met a young boy who suggested she photograph the work she was seeing, then showed her a stylized drawing of his name, or piece, in his notebook.
Then he asked her if she wanted to meet “The King”.
Following this lead to Brooklyn, Cooper met Dondi, the citywide-famous graffiti writer who kept a published photo of hers in his black book because its background contained one of his graffiti throw-ups. Cooper quickly realized that she had stumbled into a lively street culture and became an avid student of the teen writers she befriended. By the time she took her last news picture for the New York Post in 1980, her primary desire was to capture as many pieces, tags, and trains as she possibly could find. Today, she remarks on her near-obsessive devotion to documenting New York’s graffiti: waking before dawn to hit the street, waiting five hours for a freshly painted #2 train to pass with the sun at her back and countless secret adventures with vandals in train yards, evading transit police in order to pursue a shot.
Joining efforts with fellow graffiti photographer, Henry Chalfant, Cooper proposed putting together a book of their documentation. The pair endured multiple rejections from publishers while lugging around a big “dummy” book with their pictures glued to the pages. Eventually, however, they landed a deal and Subway Art was published in 1984. Although not an immediate success, it came to sell half a million copies and established itself as a holy book for fans, aspiring artists and art historians worldwide. By the time the 25th anniversary edition was published in 2009, generations of graffiti and street artists had been influenced by it and the hip-hop culture Cooper and Chalfant had captured had gone global.

In the intervening years, Martha Cooper never stopped shooting. Her love of serendipity on the street and the exploration of cultures led her to publish thousands of photos in books such as R.I.P.: Memorial Wall Art, Hip Hop Files 1979-1984, We B*Girlz, Street Play, New York State of Mind, Tag Town, Going Postal, and Name Tagging. Her work has been exhibited in museums and galleries worldwide and published in numerous magazines including National Geographic, Natural History, and Vibe. While she is still shooting graffiti, street art and the occasional break dance competition today, Cooper’s current project involves documenting people and events in Sowebo, a drug-riddled neighborhood in her birthplace of Baltimore.

Steven P. Harrington is editor-in-chief of BrooklynStreetArt.com and co-author (with Jaime Rojo) of Brooklyn Street Art and Street Art New York, both by Prestel Publishing. He and Jaime Rojo are also contributing writers on street art for The Huffington Post.

About Carmichael Gallery:

Founded in 2007 by husband and wife team Seth and Elisa Carmichael, Carmichael Gallery focuses on a select group of artists breaking ground in painting, mixed media, photography and sculpture. Their annual program consists of a series of solo and group exhibitions that document the progress of these artists.

For information on current, past and upcoming shows, visit www.carmichaelgallery.com. For additional information and press materials on this show, please contact the gallery at art@carmichaelgallery.com and

+1 323 939 0600 and Andi Baker at andi@carmichaelgallery.com.

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Martha Cooper, Photographer of Art on the Streets for Six Decades

Martha Cooper landed in LA yesterday and will spend the next week installing her photos and their remixed new versions beside them, even flanking hers like stereo speakers. Since the press release has gone out we thought we’d share with you the bio written by Steven P. Harrington and the promo photo by Jaime Rojo which will appear in a special issue of The Art Street Journal dedicated entirely to her to come out this week.

brooklyn-street-art-Jaime-Rojo-Martha-Cooper

Martha and Pablo at home, with a portrait of her sitting on a train car with camera in hand painted by Os Gemeos overlooking the scene. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Martha Cooper, Photographer of Art on the Streets for Six Decades

Written by Steven P. Harrington, this article is featured in The Art Street Journal vol ii – issue v.

The daughter of a Baltimore camera store owner, Martha Cooper’s romance with photography began in the 1940s when bobby-soxers and penny loafers were the sign of edgy youth culture. Her dad, an amateur photographer himself, gave his small girl a camera and together they hit the streets in search of adventure. “Yeah, my father used to take me out and we would take pictures. That’s what I thought photography was…we were just looking for pictures,” she recalls. Six decades later, Cooper is still looking for pictures; meanwhile, many works from her archive are cited as pivotal recordings of the birth of hip-hop culture and its plastic art form, graffiti.

During the cultural upheavals of the 1960s, Cooper earned a Bachelors of Art degree in Iowa, taught English for the Peace Corps in Thailand and rode a motorcycle from Bangkok to obtain a graduate degree at Oxford. As a freelancer and staff photographer in Japan, Maryland and Rhode Island in the early 1970s she moved to the media and art center of New York City to catch bigger fish. Landing a job on the staff of The New York Post in 1977, she discovered that the resistant and competitive boys club of photographers there were reluctant to countenance this scrappy young woman shooting hard news stories and Studio 54 celebrities.

Hungry for discovery, Cooper would spend her time to and from assignments in bombed-out neighborhoods, where she took pictures of kids entertaining themselves with games they devised on the street, often with the humblest of materials. It was during one of those trips that she stumbled on graffiti and the members of its community. She met a young boy who suggested she photograph the work she was seeing, then showed her a stylized drawing of his name, or piece, in his notebook.

Then he asked her if she wanted to meet “The King”.

Following this lead to Brooklyn, Cooper met Dondi, the citywide-famous graffiti writer who kept a published photo of hers in his black book because its background contained one of his graffiti throw-ups. Cooper quickly realized that she had stumbled into a lively street culture and became an avid student of the teen writers she befriended. By the time she took her last news picture for the New York Post in 1980, her primary desire was to capture as many pieces, tags, and trains as she possibly could find. Today, she remarks on her near-obsessive devotion to documenting New York’s graffiti: waking before dawn to hit the street, waiting five hours for a freshly painted #2 train to pass with the sun at her back and countless secret adventures with vandals in train yards, evading transit police in order to pursue a shot.

Joining efforts with fellow graffiti photographer, Henry Chalfant, Cooper proposed putting together a book of their documentation. The pair endured multiple rejections from publishers while lugging around a big “dummy” book with their pictures glued to the pages. Eventually, however, they landed a deal and Subway Art was published in 1984. Although not an immediate success, it came to sell half a million copies and established itself as a holy book for fans, aspiring artists and art historians worldwide.

By the time the 25th anniversary edition was published in 2009, generations of graffiti and street artists had been influenced by it and the hip-hop culture Cooper and Chalfant had captured had gone global.

In the intervening years, Martha Cooper never stopped shooting. Her love of serendipity on the street and the exploration of cultures led her to publish thousands of photos in books such as R.I.P.: Memorial Wall Art, Hip Hop Files 1979-1984, We B*Girlz, Street Play, New York State of Mind, Tag Town, Going Postal, and Name Tagging. Her work has been exhibited in museums and galleries worldwide and published in numerous magazines including National Geographic, Natural History, and Vibe. While she is still shooting graffiti, street art and the occasional break dance competition today, Cooper’s current project involves documenting people and events in Sowebo, a drug-riddled neighborhood in her birthplace of Baltimore.

********************

Steven P. Harrington is editor-in-chief of BrooklynStreetArt.com and co-author (with Jaime Rojo) of Brooklyn Street Art and Street Art New York, both by Prestel Publishing. He and Jaime Rojo are also contributing writers on street art for The Huffington Post.

********************

brooklyn-street-art-martha-cooper-remix-carmichael-gallery

Photographs by Martha Cooper

Martha Cooper ; Remix

with

Original remixes of these photographs in a range of media by Aeon, John Ahearn, Aiko, Bio, Nicer & B-Gee, Blade, Blanco, Mark Bode, Burning Candy, Victor Castillo, Cey, Cekis, Claw, Cosbe, Crash, Dabs & Myla, Anton van Dalen, Daze, Dearraindrop, Jane Dickson, Dr. Revolt, Shepard Fairey, Faust, Flying Fortress, Freedom, Fumakaka, Futura, Gaia, Grotesk, Logan Hicks, How & Nosm, LA II, Lady Pink, Anthony Lister, The London Police, Mare 139, Barry McGee, Nazza Stencil, Nunca, José Parlá, Quik, Lee Quinones, Kenny Scharf, Sharp, Skewville, Chris Stain, Subway Art History, Swoon, T-Kid, Terror161 and more.

Carmichael Gallery is pleased to announce Martha Cooper: Remix, an expansive group show featuring highlights from Martha Cooper’s photographic archive and works by over 50 artists who have created their own unique interpretations of her iconic, historically significant imagery. There will be an opening reception for the exhibition on Saturday, April 9 from 6 to 8pm with Martha Cooper and several of the participating artists in attendance. The exhibition will run through May 7, 2011.

Click on the link below to read BSA interview with Martha Cooper:

http://www.brooklynstreetart.com/theblog/?p=19366

Carmichael Gallery

5795 Washington Blvd

Culver City, CA 90232

April 9 – May 7, 2011

Opening Reception: Saturday, April 9, 6-8pm



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Martha Cooper Remixed by Chris Stain and Billy Mode

More pictures and an interview here with Martha Cooper, Chris Stain, and Billy Mode about their new mural in Brooklyn and her new show next month. An inspiration to many graffiti and street artists, her photos are the basis for the Martha Cooper: Remix show at Carmichael and why she and Street Artist Aiko are wheat pasting 170 of them on a wall at the MOCA Art in the Streets exhibition opening the following Saturday.

When we were thinking of Martha’s work and and the concept of remix, it easily tapped into the span of her career; both the hip-hop analog dj technique of vinyl sampling as well as the digital cut-and-paste practice of modern mashup artists who are running the streets at the moment. While it is true that Ms. Cooper has captured a vast archive of history, it’s the high regard she has earned and the relationships she has engendered that are the reason that many of these Remix pieces are so powerful. An ethnographer by training and one of the most important photographers of street and street art culture for the last four decades, Ms. Cooper remains amazingly approachable and outright enthused about her photographs and the people in them, as if she had snapped them just yesterday. And she’s pleased to meet you.

Brooklyn Street Art: Of course the city has changed a lot in the last 35 years, and you probably have also. Can you share some insight with us about what the city was like for young photographers at that time?
Martha Cooper:
I first came to NY in 1975 and for me the city was a place of opportunity. Although it was the center of publishing at the time, there weren’t that many photographers. You could call up an editor and he (usually he) would pick up the phone. I loved roaming around neighborhoods looking for pictures. Graffiti was very much underground and few people even realized that what kids were writing on walls and trains was their name. My fascination with graffiti and b-boying grew out of photographing the unknown, of being allowed entry into a world that most adults didn’t know existed. The city was going bankrupt, very few security systems were in place, and both photographers and graffiti writers could get away with a lot.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-18

This original photo taken on Houston Street in NYC in 1978 from which Chris Stain borrowed the boy on the right. (photo courtesy of Ms. Cooper © Martha Cooper)

Brooklyn Street Art: You used to get up before dawn to catch a picture of a train, and sometimes wait 5 hours for the right shot. How did you pass the time when you had to wait for hours? Crossword puzzles?
Martha Cooper:
There was no down time. Trains were constantly going by in both directions. I had to stay alert watching for just the right painted car. All of the trains in my photos were moving.

Brooklyn-Street-Art-Martha-Quote-031711

Brooklyn Street Art: So how did you get this idea for the theme for the show?
Martha Cooper: From you! (laughs) Over the years I’ve seen a lot of people using my photographs, authorized and unauthorized. The Carmichaels had asked me to do a solo show. After considering a number of options, I thought about what we had done, what you had done in that blog post. We talked about how artists had used my work and I thought, ‘Why don’t I do that?’ So that’s how it happened.

Brooklyn Street Art: Way before this show, Street Artists like Chris Stain and Shepard Fairey interpreted a number of your photographs in their work.
Martha Cooper:
Some photographers don’t want their photos to be used as a basis for someone else’s art but mostly I don’t mind. Both Chris and Shepard asked permission and in both cases the collaboration has had unexpected positive results, one of which was connecting with BSA.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-2Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: And what have the responses been like so far?
Martha Cooper: I got a lot of really heart-warming responses from people I’ve been in touch with over the years. A lot of old-school and new-school artists and that made me feel good.

Brooklyn Street Art: Was it surprising to see the response?
Martha Cooper: I didn’t know what kind of response I was going to get. It was a little scary to write to people. I decided right in the beginning that I was going to write personal notes to everybody. So you guys and I talked about it and we made a list.

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Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: Well, we tried to include old-school people you were very familiar with and a number of the new people that we were familiar with.
Martha Cooper: Yes, many of whom I had met. As it turns out, Miami was really a hotbed of street artists for me in the two years I went down there to shoot at Wynwood during Art Basel. And I would not have known some of them had it not been for Basel, so I have to thank Tony Goldman for that.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-4

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: We’ve worked with Chris Stain before and we’ve been talking to him about doing another wall together. When we told him about this show he said “Why don’t I do a Martha piece?”
Martha Cooper:
I didn’t know who Chris Stain was. He contacted me a couple of years ago by email and just said that he had done work using my photographs. And a little dialogue developed and I went over to his studio in Brooklyn and I met him and it all worked out. He had already seen my books – he doesn’t take the exact picture, he takes parts of it.

Brooklyn Street Art: Yeah, he takes elements from your photographs and puts them in a different context. And that’s okay with you, it doesn’t offend you that he takes a portion of it?
Martha Cooper: No! It flatters me. You know, just the idea that people are looking at these pictures and liking them enough to base their own art on them, to me is flattering. Maybe not to everybody, but to me, I like it. Especially if you asked permission and at least you are acknowledging that you are borrowing work from me. Then it is fine.

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Chris and Bill take a break from the cold winds to talk about the piece (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: So tell me about this piece and the boy in the picture. Do you remember when you first saw that picture?
Chris Stain:
The first time I saw that picture was in Martha’s book, “Street Play” because she gave me that book. The image is from her photograph. I had been working from other images of hers and I felt bad working from all these photographers work.  I thought, “Maybe I should just try to contact them and seeing if it’s okay if I work from them.” Because some of this stuff was going into paintings and I’m selling them and some of them are going into the streets, which doesn’t really matter.

So she was the first photographer I contacted. I was like, “Dear Ms. Cooper, I’m a big fan of yours, have been for a long time….” I talked about Subway Art, this and that. “…and I’m making paintings from some of your photographs and I was just wondering how you felt about it.”  She wrote me back and she was really into it and she was really cool with me using the images and we just kept going. She said, “I want a painting” and we met up one day and I gave her a painting and she gave me her book “New York State of Mind”. It went from there.

…..This whole wall, Billy and I did it in Miami but we’ve changed it up.

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Chris Stain and Billy Mode. The second day in the late afternoon begins (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-6

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: You did it for Wynwood? Primary Flight?
Chris: Yeah Primary Flight like three years ago. The train behind the boy says “Cries of the Ghetto” and I was told that it was originally a piece done by Dezz and Ski, and somebody else told me it was Shane. So I’m not sure who originally did it. But I’ve always liked that train a lot and I liked the words a lot so we just incorporated the whole thing together.

And tonight Bill re-did the lettering to bring it up to date a little bit and to add our own kind of twist to it and that’s what we got.

Brooklyn Street Art: So really it’s a collage of a few images.
Chris Stain: Actually it’s a collage of a photo that I took, a photo of Martha Coopers’, and I don’t know who originally photographed that “Cries of the Ghetto” train – I’m not really sure exactly who did it – whether it was Martha or Henry or somebody else but I’ve always liked it.

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Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn-Street-Art-Billy-Mode-Quote-031711

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-8

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: But thematically it is a good way to tie together her history ..
Chris: Yeah because it has the kids, which she was always photographing, together with the graffiti aspect that she’s really well known for.

Brooklyn Street Art: And then as a technique that you use, it brings the whole into the Street Art thing that is going on today.
Chris Stain: Yeah it’s bringing it up to what people are doing with street art now.

Brooklyn Street Art: How many pieces of hers have you done?
Chris Stain: I’ve probably done six or seven, with one that’s unfinished. I’ve done the one with Lady Pink holding the spray paint cans, the one with boy taking the tire off (or putting it on, I can’t tell), the one on the roof, the “Cries of the Ghetto”.

Billy Mode: You did that one with the kid holding the dove on the roof.

Chris Stain: Yeah the kid holding up the pigeon on the roof with one hand and there’s another one with the same boy where he’s holding two pigeons close together.

Brooklyn-Street-Art-chris_stain_WEB-Martha-Cooper-doves

A Chris Stain piece from a couple of years ago is based on a photograph by Martha Cooper (© Chris Stain)

Brooklyn Street Art: Oh yeah! Gaia is doing that one for this show!
Chris Stain:
He is?  Cool, that’s cool.
Brooklyn Street Art:
Well he loves doing birds, and feathers, and animals.
Chris Stain: Well Gaia’s a bird brain, that kid, so it makes sense.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-10

Chris Stain’s reference screenprint for the wall (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Billy Mode updated the letter style for this new piece. Here’s his sketch. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: So Billy you changed the style of the lettering for “Cries of the Ghetto”. How would you characterize this new style?

Billy Mode: Windy style!  It’s loose, I don’t know. The original style in some ways it’s fitting to the imagery in that it is classic but I kind of see the “Cries of the Ghetto” as being more victorious now. I want those letters to be more celebratory and have more energy to them. A lot of my letter styles are, not necessarily flamboyant, but  they have a lot of flair, a lot of motion. I’m really just bringing in my own take on it.  There’s some influence from other people’s style, and I think that’s what happens in graffiti art is you get motivated by what other people are doing.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-11

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: Martha, your blog for 12oz Prophet is followed quite heavily. What is your favorite part about writing a blog?
Martha Cooper:
My favorite part is not the writing part! For me the best thing about blogging is that I get to make use of photos immediately instead of just archiving them for possible future use as I formerly did.

brooklyn-street-art-jaime-rojo-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-03-11-2

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: Stickers are a really popular medium for expression on the street today and you point to Twist, Cost, and Revs as some of the first to use them. What makes stickers so interesting?
Martha Cooper:
Stickers are everywhere and yet they’re invisible to the uninitiated. Keeping your eyes peeled for stickers turns a walk down any street into a treasure hunt.  It’s a fun way to navigate a city.

brooklyn-street-art-jaime-rojo-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-03-11-1

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: After years of searching for perfect shots, what’s the Holy Grail now?
Martha Cooper:
Now I’m more worried about archiving my photos than taking them. I have enough pictures to last several lifetimes but I need to be able to find and access them.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-12

Chris Stain and Billy Mode (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: Your photographs of New York City youth and their art inspired the art of the next generations. What do you think is your legacy as a photographer of this pivotal period?
Martha Cooper:
In the pre-digital era, culture was disseminated by newspapers, magazines and books. I was part of a small corps of mostly freelance photographers, filmmakers, and journalists who documented early hip hop. By paying attention to subjects that might have been overlooked by mainstream media, we helped start and spread the art, dance, and music movements, now called hip hop, worldwide.

brooklyn-street-art-chris-stain-billy-mode-martha-cooper-jaime-rojo-03-11-web-1

Martha with her beloved 21 year old cat Pancho (photo © Jaime Rojo)

BSA…………..BSA…………..BSA……………

Martha Cooper : Remix
Featuring original photography from Martha Cooper and original remixes from Aeon, Anton van Dalen, Aiko, Barry McGee, Bio, Nicer, B-Gee, Blade, Blanco, BurningCandy Crew, Cey, Cekis, Chris Stain, Claw, Cosbe, Crash, Dabs & Myla, Daze, DEARRAINDROP, FAUST, Flying Fortress, Freedom, Fumakaka World Dominator, Futura, Gaia, How & Nosm, Jane Dickson, John Ahearn, Jose Parla, Kenny Scharf, LA II, Lady Pink, Lee Quinones, Anthony Lister, Logan Hicks, The London Police, Mark Bode, Nazzareno Stencil, Nunca, Mare, Quik, Evil Dr. Revolt, Shepard Fairey, Skewville, Subway Art History, Swoon, T-Kid, Terror161 and Victor Castillo.

Coming to Carmichael Gallery April 9.

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