All posts tagged: DB Burkeman

Stickers Vol. 2: More Stuck-Up Crap from DB Burkeman

Stickers Vol. 2: More Stuck-Up Crap from DB Burkeman

In the Street Art continuum that presents itself to the passerby on city streets, the early practice of hand-drawn tags on stolen postal stickers eventually morphed into mass-produced slick runs of personal branding and large scale one-off hand rendered/cut paper pieces wheat-pasted with a brush. This story, ever-evolving, is more inclusive than some may think of when you talk generically about “slaps” on a door or on the base of a streetlamp in the city’s visual dialogue. For the book Stickers Vol 2, author DB Burkeman takes a wider survey of the practice, however, and in his second compendium, he goes where BSA has always followed the creative spirit; wherever it leads.

DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.

In practice, there are few strictly “sticker artists”. More often there are artists and taggers who also use stickers as part of their public practice which may include painting, aerosol tagging, freehand marker tagging, printing, wheat pasting, sculpture. By adapting the techniques and language of advertising, propaganda, and branding, artists have seized the opportunity to have a voice in the public sphere that is more often only reserved for commercial interests.

Street Artists’ practices of self-promotion are indistinguishable from those of commercial or political interests – and why not? The public space has always been used as a battleground for ideas, a marketplace for attention, a proving ground of identity and power, a theater for capturing imagination, a Socraterial classroom for presenting and probing ideas and the examination of our assumptions about them.

DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.

In a fiercely democratic way, with a very low admission price, all motivations are presented here, and all of them are flawed, and all of them are perfect.

Burkeman’s sophisticated examinations of sticking practices are equally wide in his survey – his own full immersion into art, music, performance, consumer psychology, pop culture, and advertising giving him a comprehension and appreciation of its seeming seamlessness. 

DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.

Burkeman’s introductory essay addresses topics ranging from billboard busting, culture jamming, market forces and Warhols’ bananas – admitting that his baseline appreciation has not waned even as his own study lead him ever deeper and deeper into an ocean he still hasn’t fully fathomed since launching his first sticker volume, Stickers: Stuck-Up Piece of Crap: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art.

“Even after ten years of having this adhesive monkey on my back, I’m surprised that I can still get a kick out of the conversation that happens on the street when someone puts up a sticker,” he says. “It’s like a radiating signal to have others put their own stickers up next to it, as if to say, ‘hey, what’s up?’ The result is a cluster of paper and vinyl personalities.”

DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.

Keeping it contemporary, he also calls in experts from this idiosyncratic world of expressions to further your appreciation for the sticking practice as a reflection of society and a catalyst for it – from the Street Artist Invader to the blue-chip curator/innovator Jeffrey Deitch to fans/visionaries like Stretch Armstrong, C.R. Stecyk III, Dante Ross, and The Super Sucklord.

Using his first book as calling card, many doors have opened to Burkeman, enabling access to collections and rarities, deep dives into the crates, selections of unknowns that you would otherwise not have access to – let alone the opportunity to appreciate. You also get a selection of stickers for your own collection by serious names, including Bast, Lister, Shepard Fairey, Skullphone, Futura, Ron English, and Neckface.

“Cheap, immediate, and unapologetically in your face, the sticker remains the go-to, lo-fi expression for many a band, brand, and fan,” says Don Letts, a founding member of Big Audio Dynamite, among other things. Clearly, the images and messages sent and received using this method have been a boon to those looking to have a voice, and the sticker practice will continue apace. Undoubtedly, DB Burkeman has it covered.

DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.
DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.
DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.
DB Burkeman. Stickers Vol. 2: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art. (aka More Stuck-Up Crap) Rizzoli, NYC, 2019.
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Slap Happy: The Humble Sticker Gets The Job Done

Stickering Adheres to Some Graff/Street Art Rules Too

Today we’re sticking to the little pieces; those quickly appearing peeled objects that people smack up on just about every smooth surface around the city. Getting your name, your art, your product out there for people to see has blossomed into a genre of it’s own, fostering shows, mini-conventions, websites, magazines, books, and collectors trading clubs dedicated to the sticky-backed missives some people call ‘slaps”. From individually handmade to glossy mass-produced pieces, the city is a magnet for these adhesive miniature works of art, accumulating them quickly in some locations like snow piling up in a doorway corner during a Nor’easter.

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

Books have been documenting the world of sticker art of late. Most notable are Martha Cooper’s tomes “Going Postal” and  “Name Tagging” from Mark Batty Publishers and this fall Rizzoli released a new book on stickers called “Stickers From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art” by DB Burkemen in collaboration with Monica LoCascio.

The humble sticker is an art medium that does not require a big production and carries a very low risk when being put on the streets and gets the job done.  Doors are often the hot spots where the stickers live together in a seemingly harmonious life – and the rules applied to other forms of Street Art regarding space and real estate on a surface roughly apply here too; “Don’t overlap your sticker on mine or Imma bust you head, son.”  In addition, getting up in as many places as possible, preferably where your fellow sticker artists can see you, is a goal.

Here are some images of richly textured surfaces around town that are “wall-papered” with a myriad of stickers. Even if we knew all the artists, it’s impossible to note them all here.

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Photo © Jaime Rojo

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Anonymous Gallery Presents: “Stickers: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art” Book Launch (New York City, NY)

Anonymous Gallery
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DB Burkeman, Monica LoCascio,
Anonymous Gallery & Rizzoli
invite you to a reception celebrating the release of the book
STICKERS: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art

The authors and several featured artists will be in attendance.
Books will be available for purchase and signing

with DJ Jasmine Solano, DJ Mondee,
DJ Teddy King, DJ DB (Old Skool Set), Ron Morelli (L.I.E.S.),
Marcos Cabral (Runaway & On the Prowl),
& DJ Brennan Green (China Town)
Hosted by Boundless NY

Thursday, Oct. 7, 9pm

Le Poisson Rouge
158 Bleecker Street
.
New York, NY 10011
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