Welcome to BSA Images of the Week. Our hearts and minds are heavy and quiet this weekend as we contemplate the two decades and lost lives and liberties since September 11, 2001.
It’s impossible to know what the world would have looked like had those fateful events not taken place twenty years ago, and only a handful would have predicted that it would have been used as a springboard for more wars that cost more lives. As the country pulls out of Afghanistan so badly and obviously, a real examination of the soul is taking place. There is no real purpose served by trying to extricate the pain of loss locally from those sufferred globally as a result of the events of September 11th, except for us New Yorkers to reflect on how our city is forever changed. Thankfully, New Yorkers prove time and again that we are also forever determined to overcome and to come together.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring BAT, Below Key, BK Foxx, Chris RWK, Chupa, De Grupo, Early Riser NYC, Fumero, Futura, Hand Up, Manik, Modomatic, Naito Oru, Pope, Rezo, and Toofly.
Miguel Ángel Sánchez AKA SATURNO is an artist from a small town near Barcelona in Spain. A self-taught painter and illustrator, he’s become a recognized name in the European graffiti scene since he began in 1995, biting off a bigger piece of fame with each project.
Since 2012 he’s developed his own, unmistakable style that frightens and thrills in equal measure, and he has been painting his fantastical creations on walls big and small across Europe. With an illustration style that boasts ultra-real monsters and characters of exaggerated proportions and serious high gloss, he’s led and collaborated on many commercial projects and brands in the last few years with fire-breathing success.
The 2019 edition of Art Basel/Wynwood this past December allowed him to showcase his imagination and skills in quite remarkable ways on a couple of murals in Wynwood, Miami. One, in particular, is this astoundingly baroque beast dressed in the finest regal threads, dripping jewels, and saliva with bulging eyes and a voracious appetite for consumption.
Fans say Saturno examines the subconscious and darker aspects of people and behaviors with his work – which may lead one to conclude that this epic character is a thinly veiled metaphor for opportunist alligators whom you may meet here who are trolling flamboyantly through this rapidly gentrifying neighborhood, regaling themselves with so many shiny baubles. Certainly this reptilian socialite is audacious and confidently showy, and Saturno has hit gold with a likeness that is both repulsive and compelling.
Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening :
1. OLEK in India Covers a ‘Rain Baseras’ with Community Help.
2. Coney Art Walls 2015 by Ken Yamamura
3. KWEST: Graffiti Sculpture at Roskilde Festival
4. Björn Holzweg Mural for Knotenpunkt 15
BSA Special Feature: OLEK in India Covers a ‘Rain Baseras’ with Community Help.
St+art Delhi 2015: Olek
Today a brand new video on OLEK’s collaborative public project in India, giving you a much more comprehensive understanding of the involvement of folks from the community who all worked together with the Street Artist’s guidance and vision to create a piece of public work. The word “inspiring” can sometimes be applied to the work that artists do. Here OLEK and the many participants show us the level of dedication, collaboration, participation, effort and appreciation that contribute to this project can give the word “inspiring” a truly expansive meaning.
“Several thousand homeless people live in New Delhi for whom the government has set up ‘Rain Baseras’ (night shelters) in various parts of the city. However, these go mostly unnoticed by others living in the city, much like the homeless people themselves. Olek is one of the worlds leading crochet artists, and with the St+art India foundation, she made a massive artpiece adorned a nigh shelter in Sarai Kale Khan, to bring attention to the homeless and the ‘Rain Basera’ Project.”
A quick look at a few of the artists installing this spring at Coney Art Walls by Ken Yamamura, with some audio from Ethel Seno.
KWEST: Graffiti Sculpture at Roskilde Festival
“I started this as a way of taking these letter forms that I had been creating and produce them out of a tangible material,” says Kwest of this 16 year quest. If only it was as easy as he makes it sound.
The Canadian graffiti artist visited the Roskilde Festival 2015 to build the World’s biggest graffiti letter sculpture. See the process of creating this monumental piece.
Björn Holzweg Mural for Knotenpunkt 15
“Nature is not your friend,” so goes the adversarial stance of bounty hunters and survivalists. It’s true, it is a dog-eat-dog world and sometimes feels like survival of the fittest. You may think that Björn Holzweg is rather driving the point home here with this foreboding and dark video of his latest mural for Knotenpunkt 15, the contemporary and urban art festival in Hamburg.
“Björn Holzweg, born 1979 in Leipzig, lives and works in Hamburg since 2004. His paintings, sculptures, drawings and aquarelles are mainly shaped very graphically. He deals a lot with simple geometrical figures. For him, they are symbolic for our society: calculating, repeating and everlasting. With repetitive arrangements of those, he creates new spaces and dimensions.”
We’re in the Arizona desert today where the third season of Street Artist Jetsonorama’s “Painted Desert Project” has been gently and purposefully been rolling out this summer. The wholistic blend of the political, social, and personal in these works completed in the Navajo Nation is a natural alchemy; the idea of separating them is a non-starter for this doctor/artist/organizer/activist otherwise known as Chip Thomas.
With the project and his own work Chip says he aims to amplify the voices of the people on the reservation. The invited artists roll in at different intervals through the year, giving them time to absorb the life and the environment and to respond to it in a way that is perhaps more integrated than other projects with Street Artists.
“Photogenic country, eh?” says the Canadian Street Artist named Labrona, who shows us today some of the works he left with his buddy Troy Love Gates AKA OTHER, who he doesn’t get to see too much of these days since OTHER moved to California. “It was a great trip and I got to spend time with Other.”
Included artists over the course of this years “Painted Desert Project” are Monica Canilao and Doodles (Nick Mann), LNY, Jaz, Hyuro, and next year Nicolas Lampert of Justseeds is already on board. Chip and Monica also have completed a collaboration that is also being used as a poster in coordination with Justseeds to promote the “People’s Climate March” in New York next month. See a copy of the poster at the end of this posting.
In 2010, Brooklyn-based street artist Swoon traveled to Haiti as part of the Creative Time Global Residency Program and worked with communities in Port au Prince and Bigones to rebuild housing and community structures after the devastating earthquake last year. Hyperallergic reported on the the project’s recent inauguration in Haiti:
The project is a rebuilding initiative, which “uses dome-style structures and the super-adobe technique of earth bag architecture to create sustainable, inexpensive and dependable housing for the people of Haiti. While the structures are extremely resistant to natural disasters, they also have the major benefit of being comprised of 90% earth and requiring no specialized scaffolding and understructure to build — making it a viable option for the people of Haiti to continue building on their own once they learn the method.”
Swoon was one of six New York-based artists—along with Sanford Biggers, K8 Hardy, Emily Jacir, Maya Lin and Walid Raad—given the opportunity “to get off the race track” that is life in New York City and focus on their work in another part of the world. Maya Lin researched mass extinctions while visiting Ecuador, Egypt, and China, Walid Raad traveled to Beirut, Sanford Biggers visited Brazil to work with video; K8 Hardy made stops in Chile, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina to investigate fringe queer culture and Emily Jacir investigated activism in Italy.
This Thursday, January 20, all six artists will come to 92nd Street Y to share the stories, findings and lessons from their time abroad.
Click on the link below to read Brooklyn Street Art Studio Visit and Interview with Swoon on The Huffington Post: