All posts tagged: Chop ‘Em Down Films

BSA Film Friday: 01.17.20

BSA Film Friday: 01.17.20

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

Now screening :
1. “Dinner For Few.” A short film by Nassos Vakalis.
2. NYCHOS. Five Weeks Of Rabbit Eye Movement
3. Futura X Wynwood Walls. Chop ’em Down Films
4. Shok1 in St. Petersburg, Florida

BSA Special Feature: “Dinner For Few.” A short film by Nassos Vakalis.

“Those who eat their fill speak to the hungry of wonderful times to come,” an applicable bromide for all those folk who got the big Trump tax cut last year. Meanwhile, you are rationing your insulin.

Do you think Capitalism has run amok? This darkly entertaining animation illustrates one version of our current disordered/ordered world.

“(The capitalist machine” solely feeds the select few who eventually, foolishly consume all the resources while the rest survive on scraps from the table. Inevitably, when the supply is depleted, the struggle for what remains leads to catastrophic change.”

NYCHOS. Five Weeks Of Rabbit Eye Movement

A road-trip film is an ideal vehicle for mythmaking and definition of persona, especially when accompanied by timely music choices and distracted stares into the burned horizon. This amber-tinged panoply of rockstar travel shots, nomadic spraycation side trips, behind-the-scenes production, off-the-grid hippy encampments, rusted detritus sculpture, post-apocalypse signposts, and the energized, intensely industrious, exquisite dissection of Nychos that puts his oeuvre under the microscope and behind the looking glass. Alternately elegant and violent, this is a laboratory sweep of imagined scenarios that can make the mind cavort with fear and lust, toil and soil, pensive thought and power chords, ready to be sliced and peered into.

Futura X Wynwood Walls. Chop ’em Down Films

A brief look at Futura as he recounts his revisiting of a mural he made in Miami. Calling to the fore his inspired abstractions that first set him apart from the pack in the late 70s/early 80s, it’s a treasure to see engaged with his past, his process, his futura.

Shok1 in St. Petersburg, Florida for Shine Mural Festival.

2nd in a row from Chop ‘Em Down Films, this look at the technique of Shok1, who reveals the world through his brilliant mastery of x-ray and fantasy, is a rare treat and a great way to close this week’s survey.

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BSA Film Friday: 12.06.19

BSA Film Friday: 12.06.19


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

Now screening :
1. “Realm: Shanghai” Vhils directed by Jose Pando Lucas
2. ARTRIUM, Moscow. (part 1)
3. Faith XVLII x Philadelphia, ‘The Silent Watcher’.

BSA Special Feature: “Realm: Shanghai” Vhils directed by Jose Pando Lucas

Like other fashion and luxury brands, certain contemporary art galleries are commissioning higher-end film quality videos to put muscle behind the marketing. Naturally, some artwork is camera-ready, infused with the potential for storytelling that creates the “rich content” that social media thrives on, and aids sales teams in the gallery space and at art fairs. Portuguese Street Artist Vhils has director Jose Pando Lucas along as sophisticated seer; The artist once again bringing a storyline into savvy focus, capturing your imagination with his.

“I remember the story I was told,” intones the mystical modern while staring into the camera. “That in time I would know my place in this world.”

The tone is perhaps meant to reassure an unsteady heart in a chaotic modern world, to center oneself in a dislocating environment. Viewed as an appealing sales tool, it also skillfully fortifies a self-image of the entitled powerful class who are pre-ordained or chosen to dominate and to lead. Anonymous and existential mournful stares through city windows and at bus stops, the artworks under construction are born of destruction; mottled, rough-hewn, defiant in the city’s margins.

Tradition struggles for its place amidst amazing new technology and rapidly growing infrastructure. The artist posits himself as working man pounding on walls, without airs of class. With this art in your home you are keeping in touch with the common, the everyday insecurities, for you are citizen. You can afford it because, after all, you are also a ruler.

“Nobody really got the answers they longed for.”

“Do we live as we dream?”

“Who else can hear me right now?”

Youthful, fashionable, under constraint, free of constraint, traditional and unconventional power players laying plans quietly, focusing a pent-up hunger for more. This is the ocean of wealth and capacity that will define epochs, not decades.

It ends sweetly, a bon mot that suggests a sense of human camaraderie among competitors of this race. But it is an uncertain connection, born more of wistful desire for a pleasant resolution than actual brotherhood or sisterhood.

“Yesterday is gone. This moment has ended.”

VHILS – REALM (Shanghai, 2019) A film by Jose Pando Lucas

ARTRIUM, Moscow. (part 1)

An educational insight into the people and the place.

Unusual in the Russian Federation, if not the commercialized western cultures which have willfully merged graffiti and Street Art culture to the point of quotidian, The Artrium combines a shopping mall with murals by Street Artists. What is remarkable is the list of names who regale this city skin with new pieces inside and outside, bringing to life an otherwise normal grey and beige block.

Astounding to discover in the center of Moscow, the outdoor gallery boasts artists such as Shepard Fairey, Felipe Pantone, Tristan Eaton, Ben Eine, PichiAvo, Okuda San Miguel, Pokras Lampas, Faith47, WK Interact, Faust, and Haculla. Average visitors may not grasp the remarkable collection of talents, but if you are shopping in this capital city, you wouldn’t want to miss this opportunity that captures a stunning moment in the rotation of the Street Art universe.

Faith XVLII x Philadelphia, ‘The Silent Watcher’. By Chop ’em Down Films

In the words of Faith XLVII;
‘I come from a country that is seething with the frustration of uncontrollable violence and woman abuse, xenophobia , class and racial divide.
And have moved to a country where there seems to be a fundamental crisis in the very soul of the nation.

We know this ache of our lands.
And we all know personal ache.
Everybody has their struggle to bear.

And with the weight of the world on our shoulders,
we must still be able to live with empathy
We must somehow keep our hearts open.

The words on this wall are a reference to the City Seal of Philadelphia with calls out for brotherly love.
This is no small commitment.

It also references a quote ‘Optimism is a strategy for a Better Future.’
Paying tribute to Noam Chomsky who was born in Philadelphia and is 91 years old this year. .

The harsh experiences of life can easily make us fall into a negative world view,
or inner psychological depression.
But we each have the ability to transform this base metal of knowing suffering,
into the gold of higher aspiration.

The name of this mural is ‘The Silent Watcher’
We can be the silent watcher, who knows, who loves and who endures.’

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BSA Film Friday: 08.23.19

BSA Film Friday: 08.23.19

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

Now screening :
1. Conor Harrington in Manhattan
2. Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada “Reflection” Spring 2019
3. Caratoes at Superchief Gallery in Miami
4. DALeast in Seattle

BSA Special Feature: Focus on Zane Meyer & Chop ’em Down Films

Chop ’em Down Films, a film production company based in LA and spearheaded by filmmaker Zane Meyer, has been capturing the scene incredibly as of late. Wherever we go, there he is – jetting from continent to continent to capture and document with video what’s happening in today’s world of street art and graffiti.

The killer detail for us? His soundtrack music choices. Unusual interludes from unsung heroes, sometimes funky and soulful, other times wistful, tilting on the precipice of morning, or mourning. Excerpted as they are from larger works that are somehow familiar, they might not stand on their own in their entirety in your playlist, but they pour layers of meaning and significance on action flying at you from the whirring eye in the sky.

Zane keeps these videos at one minute to meet Instagram limitations (and short attention spans) but he knows how to work within that time constraint to communicate the news and a great deal more; and capture the muscle, the sleek movement, the unwieldy testosterone, the simple song of the heart, the exquisite detail that assures you of mastery, and craft. You don’t know if you heard it or saw it or if it was simply implied; the rich palette of the towns, the stark expanse of the sky, the singing of the birds, the impatience of the cars, the clack and roar of the trains and the sweet action on the streets, plump with possibility, the locals beckoning. With his ability to alchemize, the art is always in context.

Here are four for your enjoyment. Offered without comment, may it please the court.

Conor Harrington in Manhattan

Conor Harrington in Manhattan. Organized by The L.I.S.A. Project NYC and shot by Zane Meyer from Chop ’em Down Films.

Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada “Reflection” Spring 2019

Caratoes at Superchief Gallery in Miami

DALeast in Seattle

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BSA Film Friday: 06.28.19

BSA Film Friday: 06.28.19

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

Now screening :
1. Gonzalo Borondo “Merci” Temple des Chartrons
2. ELLE in Allentown
3. Pejac: YIN-YANG
4. “Beyond The Streets” In A New York Minute – By Chop ‘Em Down Films
5. LL Cool J – I’m Bad

BSA Special Feature: Gonzalo Borondo “Merci” Temple des Chartrons, France. 2019

Finally opened, its the spirit of man and nature working in concert in this vast emporium, a transformatorium, of images and pieces of memory from Street Artist Borondo. If you are in Paris before August 18, it is a must see.

ELLE in Allentown

Former tagger and now fulltime muralist, Elle talks about a new work in Allentown, PA, which is trying to kindle a creative arts / high tech reputation after the iron industry left. “The gist of the entire collage is that all of women are more powerful together,” says Elle.


Spanish Street Artist and studio artist Pejac is back with one of his visual aphorism that addresses climate change ironically.

“Beyond The Streets” In A New York Minute – By Chop ‘Em Down Films

Like we said earlier this week when this video debuted:

“It’s a unique talent to capture the fervor of an opening like “Beyond the Streets” in one minute. The show spreads over two floors and fifty years – the reunions alone were enough for an hour movie. But somehow Zane catches an individual, personal, flavor in a New York minute.”

LL Cool J – I’m Bad

Also, the because it’s Friday and because LL is Bad

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“Facing the Giant: Three Decades of Dissent” – New Video Celebrates Shepard’s 30th on the Street.

“Facing the Giant: Three Decades of Dissent” – New Video Celebrates Shepard’s 30th on the Street.

“Questioning the giant monolithic forces that we are all subjected to” – Shepard Fairey

“It all began with an absurd sticker of Andre The Giant that was a happy accident,” says Street Artist Shepard Fairey about his first foray as an artist on the streets back in ’89. “So there’s a giant in the original sticker which evolved into an exploration of control, questioning control, questioning the giant monolithic forces that we are all subjected to,” he says.

You didn’t doubt that Shepard had an anti-demagogue, anti authoritarian, anti-propaganda stance even then; his methods for skewering were cheekily challenging, often employing propaganda methodology of his own to get the point across. Good design, good satire, and grand targets.

As Fairey begins his multi-pronged celebration of three decades of questioning self-appointed authority and the agents of dis-information, the folks at Chop ‘em Down Films have produced the opening salvo here – and we’re sure you’d like to see it.

“Facing the Giant: Three Decades of Dissent” for the OBEY GIANT 30th body of work – reflecting on 30 years of his art in the streets… and everywhere else”.

Facing the Giant: Three Decades of Dissent. Video by Chop ’em Down Films

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BSA Film Friday: 05.10.19

BSA Film Friday: 05.10.19

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

Now screening :
1. INTI “Soleil”. Blinded by the Light.
2. Martha Cooper: Queen der Street Art
3. Elisa Capdevila x Anna Repullo. Contorno Urbano Foundation. 12+1 Project
4. Mare 139 : L’ avenir” Graffuturism. Group Exhibition.
5. FAUST: L’ avenir” Graffuturism. Group Exhibition.

BSA Special Feature: INTI “Soleil”. Blinded by the Light.

OMG WHERE does Chop ’em Down get their music from? Finally we said it out loud.

Yes, the monstrous archive of top-notch video that they are amassing of Street Artists and others creating work in the world is scintillating, the gut-punch editing is riveting, the pickings are lush. But time and again Zane nails it into next week with the music choices. Bless you brother.

INTI “Soleil”. Blinded by the Light. Video by Chop ’em Down Films for Peinture Fraiche Festival. Lyon, France.

Martha Cooper: Queen der Street Art via ZDF German TV (in German no subtitles)

Our sincere thanks to Susanne Lingemann and ZDF German TV for this great piece on Martha Cooper during the premiere of Selina Miles’ movie “Martha: A Picture Story” at Tribeca Film Festival. Next stop Sydney!

Elisa Capdevila x Anna Repullo. Contorno Urbano Foundation. 12+1 Project

Easily the winner of wackiest choice of concept and music for the year so far is this wiccan themed duo in Spain painting walls across from each other on an underpass. Something to do with sensuality and competitiveness and … witchcraft? Good painting tho.


L’avenir Graffuturism Group Exhibition

A special collection of works opened on April 26th under the banner “Graffuturism”, guided by its creator and advocate, the artist Poesia. The lineup includes a number of artists along the street art/graffiti /contemporary continuum such as Augustine Kofie, Tobias Kroeger, Carlos Mare, Doze Green, Jaybo Monk, Faust, Kenor, and Matt W. Moore – each with distinct graphic voices of their own. Below are a couple of brief profiles from the show follow here.

“L’ avenir” Graffuturism. Group Exhibition. Mare139.

“L’ avenir” Graffuturism. Group Exhibition. Faust.

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BSA Film Friday: 01.25.19

BSA Film Friday: 01.25.19

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

Now screening :
1. 10 Year Challenge : Doug Gillen Takes It
2. Tavar Zawacki: Mixing Colors In A Parking Garage in Wynwood.
3. NUART 2018 / RE-CAP: Space is The Place

BSA Special Feature: Doug Gillen of FWTV takes the 10 Year Challenge:

Inspired by a meme (what else could be more 2019) Doug Gillen decides to to an inexact comparison of where selected Street Artists have changed and remained the same since 10 years ago. The big ones apparently are staying ahead by going bigger and perhaps developing entire marketing divisions, possibly in danger of being bloated. Elsewhere we see true evolution.

Tavar Zawacki: Mixing Colors In A Parking Garage in Wynwood. Video by Chop ’em Down Films.

Perhaps in a continued effort to bare it all, Tavar Zawacki (formerly Above) takes off his shirt in Miami and tells us about the importance of color to him.

NUART 2018 / RE-CAP: Space is The Place

“You can view it in a museum and it still feels like Street Art, but is the place of the museum the same as the space of the street,” Professor Alison Young from the University of Melbourne poses the question on the docks of Stavanger, Norway. In face, says Nuart, space is the place that determines the ultimate impact an artistic intervention can have.

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Tristan Eaton “Intermission” Video Debuts

Tristan Eaton “Intermission” Video Debuts

Tristan Eaton completed his turn at the famed Houston/Bowery Wall in Manhattan back in July…he wanted an Intermission from the noise, the bad news, the stress, the BS and the haters, he says.

So he regaled us and the city with a burst of color and old Hollywood nostalgia. We wrote about the mural HERE and now Zane from Chop ’em Down Films just sent us his video of his capture of the artist and mural. Since we are all mid-summer here in NYC  we’d like to take Tristan’s intermission further and give it some love once more…

Zane caught in the action. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Zane catching the action with Tristan and Sheryo’s happy encounter and Martha Cooper doing what she was born to do… (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Tristan Eaton. Intermission. Houston Bowery Wall. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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BSA Film Friday: 08.03.18

BSA Film Friday: 08.03.18


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

Now screening :
1. Cheryl Dunn Walk The Streets Of NYC
2. Studio Visit With Bordalo II in Lisbon
3. Good Guy Boris “TOYS ARE BETTER PEOPLE” / Part I and II


BSA Special Feature: Cheryl Dunn Walk The Streets Of NYC

“Go there and go deep,” says street photographer and filmmaker Cheryl Dunn in this new brand sponsored content video that takes you through mainly Chinatown/Wall Street area and allows you to hear her story and perspectives briefly.

Director of a highly-praised documentary called “Everybody Street” and many others of high quality, Dunn is more than familiar with the ethos of observing life in the chaos-metropolis and hoping to capture a moment that sticks out as a clarion yell. It’s about an approach that is only yours, and only possible through your vision, and luck.

Studio Visit With Bordalo II in Lisbon

Literally garbage. But you knew that.

But did you know the level of detail and minute mechanical manipulation that goes into a piece by Street Artist/fine artist Bordallo II ? Straight from Lisbon, where he propagates grandly forward from a curiously ornate studio spot.

Good Guy Boris “TOYS ARE BETTER PEOPLE” / Part I

Bad Boy Boris is not good at math or certain mechanical/technical matters but he’s good at persistence. Which is why he’ll succeed.

The graffiti writer is an authority on sniffing out opportunity and his hand-made and witty vlog allows you to tag along as he looks for the perfect spot by the beach outside of Athens to put up his piece.

“Toys are humble people, cool people, chill people,” coos the suddenly philosophical Boris as he strides victoriously from his freshly painted pat on the back for that much maligned population. Ah, but everyone is a rookie as some point right?

“Just another obsessed vlogger risking his life for the sake of YouTube because YouTube is more important than life,” he says in one more pearl of wisdom that will surely entice viewers to follow this guy until he works out all the kinks.




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BSA Film Friday: 05.25.18

BSA Film Friday: 05.25.18


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

Now screening :
1. Street Vendors in Abidjan with YZ Yseult Digan
2. The Yok & Sheryo: Public Silo Trail. Albany, Australia
3. “Chile Estyle.” Trailer
4. Faith XLVII Talks About Her Installation for “Beyond The Streets”


BSA Special Feature: Street Vendors in Abidjan. YZ Yseult Digan

“I pay attention to the intensity of the gaze and the posture, so the passerby is challenged and seeks to question the project.”

A sociological experiment and intervention on the streets by the French Street Artist YZ takes place in Abidjan and camera work in the crowds allows you to appreciate the action on the street. A city of 4.7 million people and the economic capital of Côte d’Ivoire, the city has a lively culture of street vending that is unregulated and often populated by children.

YZ speaks with the folks she meets who are vending, who she refers to as “girls” although many are women. Her goal is to better understand them, she says, and to create a Street Art campaign of their portraits.

“I realized that their situation was very different from the men. So I wanted to know more about them. So I started the project ‘Street Vendors’,” she says.


The Yok & Sheryo: Public Silo Trail. Albany, Australia

The Yok & Sheryo brought a clever creature across an enormous four tower wall in Albany, Australia as part of a public art program funded by private interests like BHP, the Anglo-Australian multinational mining, metals and petroleum company. The Public Silo Trail is bringing artists like HENSE from the US and Phlegm from the UK to paint Artworks on grain silos, transformer boxes and all sorts of unexpected infrastructure to connect a series of regional towns.


“Chile Estyle.” Trailer

“Every social movement creates a cultural response,” says an organizer from the late 1960s who helps us trace the origins of Chilean Street Art and graffiti to the murals that became a crucial part of public discourse here. “We painted all of Chile for the Allende election campaign.” The trailer for the upcoming movie now in post production features a highlight of  INTI and many open discussions of the evolution of graffiti and muralism simultaneously, eventually leading to the fascination for murals that currently reigns.


Faith XLVII Talks About Her Installation for  “Beyond The Streets”

Faith leads you to the abandoned spaces and investigations of lives and stories that she often conducts when looking for the ideal places to make her art. “There is almost a holy, sacred feeling in that silence,” she says as she traverses places and stories and brings them together for an alter of sorts in the new exhibition now in Los Angeles called “Beyond the Streets.”

With special thanks to Chop ’em Down Films.


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BSA Film Friday: 04.27.18 / Chop ‘Em Down Films Special

BSA Film Friday: 04.27.18 / Chop ‘Em Down Films Special


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

Now screening :
1. Nychos “Wilhelmine von Bayreuth”
2. RETNA X Vhils in Echo Park


BSA Special Feature: Spotlight on Chop’em Down Films

We continue to watch and admire the filmmaker Zane Meyer as he follows the artists in the Street Art and related scenes, bringing his own definitive perspective to the story, often transforming it into something more.

With a background in SoCal skater culture and a nomadic rolling approach to capturing the internal adventure, Meyer is bringing his full potential to this game. He’s down distinctive audio as well, adding timbre, humor, jolting alarm and soul. His company Chop’em Down Films is celebrating its first decade and he’s moving into his 4th and its exciting to think what the next ten hold for this director full of vision.

Nychos “Wilhelmine von Bayreuth”

Because Nychos is all about the soaring chopping power chords of metal in audio and the slicing apart of animals, people, and brand icons visually, this deliciously controlled mahem is almost going to make you feel guilty for the joy to take watching it. But why?

RETNA X Vhils in Echo Park

Getting it right again, this sampling of the voice of white authority praises and insults simultaneously. Laid against the swagger of Retna and Vhils triumphantly astride their wall, the happy horror of it all comes to life in one minute flat. A sports analogy via colonialism, “The Autumn Wind” is meant to talk about the lore of football as narrated by John Facenda, but in this context the battle is artists against the elements and the wall.


Mystery and stories of the city cloak this narrative of letterist Trav MSK as he interpolates the nighttime blinking of messages against the sky, and the quick movement of shadows just outside your periphery. Suddenly its a defiant act of staged vandalism across walls of photography and illustration in a gallery like setting, and a boxtruck tag of the paint sponsor’s name.



Yes, Street Art is ephemeral, but OKUDA San Miguel just set it on fire!” we said last month as the Fallas festival in Valencia brought the artist to the front of the celebration, only to burn his creation to the ground.

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