All posts tagged: Doug Gillen

BSA Film Friday: 12.09.22

BSA Film Friday: 12.09.22

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

Now screening:
1. The Artist Who Paints Folks on the Street, Faces of Santa Ana
2. Meet the Artists Changing the face of New Brighton
3. Banksy – Rage, Flower Thrower NFT…but for free (2022)

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BSA Special Feature: Painting People Experiencing Homelessness

You can use your talents to build walls or build bridges. It’s up to you. Brian Peterson shows through his actions that art is a force for good, for healing, and even to pay someone’s bills in the process.

The Artists Who Paints Folks on the Street

Faces of Santa Ana


Meet the Artists Changing the face of New Brighton

Doug from Fifth Wall returns to New Brighton a few years after his first video here to find how the interaction between art and public space has begun to transform the town’s image of itself. Interesting to hear the primary proponent of the public art program here to say that success is contingent on a public/private partnership here in a seaside resort in Wallasey, Merseyside, England.

“Maybe this is exactly the model that we should be looking towards,” says Doug of the highly individualized approach the businesses and residence are taking toward building a community and an economy. Set your clocks; he’s looking like he might be moving in shortly. Maybe he’ll begin Nuart New Brighton and ask Juxtapoz to run some programming for a few days?


Banksy – Rage, Flower Thrower NFT…but for free (2022)

Banksy – Rage, Flower Thrower NFT… but for free (2022) – or so goes this murky offer of an NFT posted right now on Open Sea for the next three days. More confusingly, the press release for it is over a year old. – whereupon it infers that the original image is shot by Andrew Bayles but has copyright attempted by the International Street Art Man of Mystery himself.

Regardless of the veracity of any of this storytelling – and we have not way of verifying it – the animation is attractive and well done. Good luck to all the parties!

“This is not an official Banksy NFT… read below for more information. Press Release: October 14, 2021 “Attack Attack Attack” is a non-fungible token for sale on OpenSea, the world’s first and largest digital marketplace for crypto collectibles and NFTs. This digital creation is an artwork co-signed by Unikz, a digital artist from Bristol and Andrew Bayles, a photographer from Leeds (UK). The two artists created a digital artwork that reveals a little more about the identity of the street artist Banksy. This NFT is unique because it allows you to discover part of Banksy’s creative process. Indeed, the work, which is a digital video loop of 50 seconds, begins on the world-famous image of Banksy’s “Rage, the Flower Thrower” and then a picture representing a man throwing a molotov cocktail appears in overprinting. This photo, taken in Leeds (UK) in 1987, is obviously the base image that was used to make the famous Banksy stencil in 2005. Banksy has recently tried unsuccessfully to register this artwork as his personal trademark. The photo, shot by Andrew Bayles, was published in 1987 in an anarchist newspaper, called Attack Attack Attack, produced and distributed anonymously due to the radical information it contained. According to the artwork authors, only a member of the punk / anarchist movement in the late 1980s in England could have seen and used this image to create the famous stencil. This relaunches the discussions about the past of Banksy. According to the artist’s official biography, he was only 12 years old in 1987. It’s hard to imagine him as a punk, at that age, reading anarchist newspapers. Coïncidence? in 1988, few months after the publication of the photo in “Attack, Attack, Attack” newspaper, Robert del Naja (born in 1965) created the trip hop band, Massive Attack. The non-fungible token, certified by Verisart is available for sale on OpenSea, including an original photo print signed by the artists.”

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BSA Film Friday 07.22.22

BSA Film Friday 07.22.22

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

Now screening:
1. URBAN NATION 2022 – “Talking… & Other Banana Skins” – on FWTV
2. Flower Punk”- Azuma Makoto
3. JR: Can Art Change the World?

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BSA Special Feature: URBAN NATION 2022 – “Talking… & Other Banana Skins” – on FWTV

In his first official visit back to Urban Nation since its opening in 2017, Fifth Wall host Doug Gillen finds a more democratic collection of artists from various points in the street art/urban art constellation. That impression is understandable due to the heavy presence of commercial interests involved in the selection of bankable street art stars and OGs chosen to represent five decades of graffiti/street art at the opening of a new institution dedicated to the scene. Curators were careful to program several relative unknowns and lesser-recognized artists into that initial grab-bag collection, but we take the point.

It’s refreshing to hear the current show’s curator Michelle Houston speak about her personal and professional philosophy toward street art and our collective relationship to it. A hybrid of the existing UN permanent collection and new works, it comes off as a rather wholistic approach that respects more players and their contribution to what has proven to be a very democratic grassroots art movement on streets around the world.

With decidedly less focus on the ever-more codified, commodified, and blue-chip-ivy-league-endorsed criterion of exclusivity that plagues the ‘art world’, this varied collection may represent a retaining wall against trends we witness that threaten to erect the same sort of structures of exclusivity that unbridled art-in-the-streets set out to destroy. Of course, every modern counterculture eventually gets transformed on its way to accepted culture, and we’re somewhat resigned to that reality. However rather than zapping the life out of the free-wheeling nature of graffiti and street art, Urban Nation may be staking a claim of departure from peers to defend some of those original tenets – in this insistently self-defining scene.

URBAN NATION 2022 – “Talking… & Other Banana Skins” – Exhibition Review | FWTV



“Flower Punk”- Azuma Makoto

And speaking of every modern counterculture that eventually gets transformed on its way to accepted culture, we present the Punk Florist, artist Azuma Makoto, who uses plants in a sculptural manner. It is a practice that he hopes can connect humanity and nature. It may help if you are listening to Dead Kennedys or Black Flag – or perhaps something more industrial, or no-wave. But when he and his team send a ragged bundle of beauty literally into space, all bets are off. It’s a new game.



JR: Can Art Change the World?

In yet another TED talk, JR speaks for himself.

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BSA Film Friday: 06.24.22

BSA Film Friday: 06.24.22

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

Now screening:
1. Chile Estyle, from Pablo Aravena
2. ARCHIFONT
3. Tartu Street Art Comes to Berlin – Hello Mister Police Officer | FWTV

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BSA Special Feature: Chile Estyle, from Pablo Aravena

The evolution of a graffiti/street art movement is not unilateral in its formative influences nor its cities of germination. Not only does Chile have a unique genesis story born of oppression and rebellion that is written into the history of the modern street art movement, it has produced a number of strong proponents of the current global scene.

“Young people took to the streets with political muralism all over Chile in the late 60’s at the same time as young people in New York were starting Modern graffiti and May 68 happened in Paris. Chile Estyle is a documentary film that explores the past and present of Chile’s unique street art tradition which comes from a remix of political muralism and graffiti and has been part of the Chilean cultural and political life since the 60s, resulting in a visually arresting, informative and entertaining film.”

Chile Estyle – Trailer – Pablo Aravena


ARCHIFONT

“I kept looking at it and saying, ‘I could do a whole alphabet based on it.'”

ARCHIFONT Letters dressed in architecture. For the fonts lovers and the architecture lovers this little video of the names of master architects, past and present will stir emotions, we are certain of that. But we also know a thing or two about the letter form art we call graffiti…certainly, our emotions were stirred…will yours?


Tartu Street Art Comes to Berlin – Hello Mister Police Officer | FWTV

It’s been a little while since we’ve seen the folks from Tartu and are happy to see them doing a show in Berlin. Doug from Fifth wall interviews 4 of the originators/artists from the “Stencibility” festival in Estonia – as they mount their exhibition in Berlin. Open till June 25th!

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BSA Film Friday: 06.10.22

BSA Film Friday: 06.10.22

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

Now screening:
1. MuralFest Kosovo 2022
2. PichiAvo in Linz, Austria
3. Graffiti TV 103: Ler2

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BSA Special Feature: MuralFest Kosovo 2022

Doug Gillen’s register has dropped to something deeper in this new video at the Kosovo 2022 MuralFest that he does for his brand FifthWall TV. As ever, he seeks to connect you with the people who are working to engage their city with art in the streets. Adopting the theme “Offline” – the same as the 2018 Moscow Artmossphere International Urban Art Festival that we co-curated – the MuralFest artists are reconsidering life and community in a way that is free from the electronic platforms we have all been communicating on. It makes sense because art in the streets began here with the people and with the city.

MuralFest Kosovo 2022 via FithWall TV

PichiAvo in Linz, Austria

A quick soundless timelapse of the PichiAvo magicians doing their mural at Promenade Galerien in Linz in Austria.

Graffiti TV 103: Ler2

This episode of Graff TV features graffiti writer Ler2!

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BSA Film Friday: 02.18.22

BSA Film Friday: 02.18.22

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

Now screening:
1. BSA Special Feature: ‘Gold Mine’ by Pejac
2. Graffiti & Jail: Doug Gillen and FWTV
3. Said Dokins, Cix, and Spaik: Memoria Canera

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BSA Special Feature: ‘Gold Mine’ by Pejac

Pejac recently completed a series of interventions within the oldest prison in Spain, the Penitentiary Center of El Dueso. Located at the entrance of artist’s hometown of Santander, overlooking the Cantabrian sea and surrounded by marshes, the prison built at the beginning of the 20th century on the remains of an old Napoleon’s fort was another challenging setting to carry out his poetic interventions.

For 11 days, its walls, courtyards, and corridors became the artist’s workplace, giving life to the Gold Mine project in that sense. The project integrates three singular pieces, which as a whole represent the value of the human condition, its resistance to adversity, the need to create, and its desire, above all, to leave a mark.

“A prison itself is a place wrapped in harsh reality and at the same time, I feel that it has a great surrealist charge. It is as if you only need to scratch a little on its walls to discover the poetry hidden inside.” PEJAC


Graffiti & Jail: Doug Gillen and FWTV

And on another side of the coin, Doug Gillen of FifthWall TV talks about graffiti and street artists who go to prison as punishment for doing illegal graffiti on the streets.


Memoria Canera

Said Dokins, Cix, and Spaik: Memoria Canera was part of a three mural series made by the outstanding Mexican Street Artists Said Dokins, Cix, and Spaik at the Maximum Security Penitentiary in Morelia, Michoacán.

The project intended to shed light on a discussion about Cultural Rights and how artistic and cultural practices can be a valuable tool to mediate against exclusion and marginalization. By disrupting the space with color and text, symbols and patterns, the environment is transformed. The new murals are “Puedes Volver a Volar” (You can Fly Again) by Spaik, “Estado Mental” (Mental State) by Cix, and “Memoria Canera” (Memories from Jail) by Said Dokins.

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Bristol’s Vanguard Exhibition Curators Bring Outside Installations Inspired by UN Goals for 2030

Bristol’s Vanguard Exhibition Curators Bring Outside Installations Inspired by UN Goals for 2030

Stylistically diverse artists are gathered loosely around a dispersed list of goals – and the results are a variety of public works that hope to challenge communities in Bristol, England, with pertinent messages about the collapse of ecological systems demarking the current age.

A series of art activations curated by Charlotte Pyatt this fall in conjunction with the Vanguard exhibition here at M Shed, Charlotte asked artists Richt, Peace of Art, Filthy Luker, Mau Mau, Gabriel Pitcher, Lucy McLauchlan, Caryn Koh, Ampparito, and Paul Harfleet to conceptualize pertinent responses to the UN 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for 2030. It’s a high order, but you must begin somewhere and, by partnering with local community groups in Bristol, the team hoped to show how the people of this city can localize global conversations on poverty eradication, environmental protection and societal equality.

The Vanguard team is made up of a collective of artists, specialists and collectors involved in the global street art movement, say the promotional materials, and the project is led by Mary McCarthy with creative direction from Charlotte Pyatt, art direction from Justin MacCarthy aka DICY, and design direction from Graham Dews aka PARIS.

Below are images from the outdoor installations along with some information from their press department about each artist. Special thanks to photographer Doug Gillen for sharing these excellent images with BSA readers.

Filthy Luker. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Paul Box)

Filthy Luker

“Luke Egan and Pete Hamilton AKA street art duo Filthy Luker and Pedro Estrellas have been creating inflatable artworks together for 24 years. The artist’s unmistakable style and use of medium has carved a unique niche in the international Street Art movement.”

The duo took over the rooftop of We The Curious with an inflatable floral sculpture to amplify SDG15 Life on Land, in partnership with The Natural History Consortium.

“This year city partners came together to create the first One City Ecological Emergency Strategy,” says Savita Willmot is chief executive of The Natural History Consortium. “Our challenge is to now bring these ideas to life across the streets of Bristol. Arts and culture are at the heart of our city, and harnessing the engaging power of art will be crucial to tackling our environmental emergencies.”

Filthy Luker. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Paul Box)
Filthy Luker. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Paul Box)
Pansy Project. “For the unheard” Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Pansy Project)

The Pansy Project

The Pansy Project created a tour calling for Gender Equality, say, organizers. More specifically they called for an end to all discrimination and violence against women and girls, which includes lesbophobia, biphobia, and transphobia.

Artist Paul Harfleet brought The Pansy Project to Bristol, leading a free walking tour of the city along which he planted pansies at sites of homophobic and transphobic abuse as a defiant but gentle resistance to hate.

“Despite the melancholic nature of my work, there’s always joy in connecting with my LGBTQ+ siblings to share our stories and connect,” Harfleet says. “I believe that sharing the challenges we face connects and strengthens us.”

Pansy Project. “Mocked gay couple” Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Pansy Project)
Pansy Project. “You gay queer!!” Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Pansy Project)
Pansy Project. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Pansy Project. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Gabriel Pitcher. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Gabriel Pitcher

A British artist based in South Korea, Gabriel Pitcher uses figurative portraits, short films, and on-street interventions to confront norms about classical beauty, and examines attitudes and psychology in the meantime.

The community ambassador for this intervention in St Werburgh’s is The Global Goals Centre. “I’ve always been interested in exploring and documenting the stories behind the people I paint,” says the artist. This portrait celebrates Katie Cross, her sport, and her effort to ignite that same curiosity and energy for engaging meaningfully with the conversation on climate action.”

Aligning his materials with the climate focus of the activation, Pitcher created his mural using Graphenstone paint which draws in carbon from the air as it cures.”

Gabriel Pitcher. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Gabriel Pitcher. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Gabriel Pitcher. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Lucy McLauchlan

Lucy McLauchlan. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Lucy McLauchlan. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Lucy McLauchlan. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Richt. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Plaster)

Richt

British Artist and illustrator based in Bristol, UK. Richt aesthetic is minimally monochromatic works with elements of comics, pop, and abstract landscape.

Focusing on the need for “Decent Work and Economic Growth,” he partnered with community ambassador Campus Skateparks and painted a mural at Campus Pool Skatepark to celebrate the role of skate culture in fostering pathways into the creative industries.

“Skateboarding is so many different things,” he says. “For me, at its core, it’s an act of rebellion where nobody is in charge of the biggest club of misfits and rejects ever assembled. The only logical outcome from that recipe is creativity in abundance.”

Richt. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Plaster)
Richt. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Plaster)
Mau Mau. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Pete Metcalf)

Mau Mau

Light-spirited satirist Mau Mau calls out social injustice and environmental disaster, as he has done for the past 2 decades.
“His stable of urban creatures have grown to become icons in their own right,” say organizers. “His foxes, pigs, and sheep have appeared on walls from Japan to the States,” they say, and “He has worked with the likes of Banksy, Dizzie Rascal, Surfers Against Sewage and Greenpeace to name a few.”


Speaking on the artwork, a representative for Frank Water said:
“[Here] The globe’s surface points to India, the country with the most people in the world (77 million) without improved access to safe water and the region where FRANK WATER undertakes most of their overseas work. This is juxtaposed with the fact that we undervalue our access to quality water here in the UK, we even flush toilets with drinking-quality water. This aligns with the organization’s efforts to encourage a shift in attitudes to water locally, increasing its perceived value and promoting stewardship.”

Mau Mau. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Pete Metcalf)
Mau Mau. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Pete Metcalf)
Caryn Koh. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Caryn Koh. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Ampparito. “Waiting for the fall”. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Ampparito. “Waiting for the fall”. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Ampparito. “Waiting for the fall”. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Ampparito. “Waiting for the fall”. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Ampparito. “Waiting for the fall”. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Peace of Art Collective. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Plaster)

Peace of Art

Bristol-based female street art collective “Peace of Art” features local artists Emily Richards, Aumairah Hassan Safina Khan and Manazzar Siddique. Begun the street in 2020, the trio say they are “passionate about painting murals that are empowering and reflective of the diverse local community and bringing positive, inspiring art to the area.”

“This mural aims to highlight the issues around climate change and clean air inequalities. It is a reminder of our deep connection with nature as well as one another and the quality of the air we breathe should not and cannot be taken for granted.”

Peace of Art Collective. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Plaster)
Peace of Art Collective. Vanguard x Bristol Toward2030. What are you doing? Bristol, UK. 2021. (photo © Anya Agulova)
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BSA Film Friday: 09.10.21

BSA Film Friday: 09.10.21

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

Now screening:
1. A Kaleidoscopic Journey Through Money
2. My Dog Sighs “Inside” as Discovered by Doug Gillen and FWTV
3. PichiAvo’s Paris St-Michel mural

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BSA Special Feature: A Kaleidoscopic Journey Through Money

The confidence and reverence that humans give to currencies is as much an article of faith as any religion can conjure. In fact, it is a requirement for any money not backed by gold – your faith. The motifs and icons and design flair employed in its presentation to the user are indicative of our values as well. Here the director and designer Lachlan Turczan breaks apart the elements, finds their similarities and differences, and delightfully, mesmerizingly, re-flows the results to a musical soundtrack by Blake Mills.

“I made hi-resolution scans of banknotes from 23 countries ranging from the 1800s to the modern-day. Machine learning was used to further enhance these scans so that I could zoom in on the intricacies of the engravings. Using replacement animation techniques, the guilloché patterns wash over the viewer in a barrage of linework and geometry. Iconic scenes throughout history are also shown: the age of exploration leads to industrialization, wonders of the world are replaced by office buildings and icons of freedom stand in stark contrast to images of slavery. The project culminates with the collective eyes of all world leaders staring back at the audience.”



My Dog Sighs “Inside” as Discovered by Doug Gillen and FWTV

Paul Stone aka My Dog Sighs in Portsmouth, UK is one of the interior immersive exhibitions that you have been hoping to go inside again but have been leary of because you might get sick and die. Now watch as your Doug sighs walking through the “inside” of this artist’s animated mind.

For more- please see “My Dog Sighs “Inside”: A Hidden, Staged Exhibition in Portsmouth, UK” on BSA



PichiAvo’s Paris St-Michel mural

The PichiAvo duo continues around the world with classic gods intermingled and floating among graffiti gods. Here in Paris they depict Poseidon and Niké on the Boulevard St-Michel.

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‘Our Towns’ Brings Gillen and Pyatt and Artists to Basildon Walls

‘Our Towns’ Brings Gillen and Pyatt and Artists to Basildon Walls

“We are committed to improving our town centre and art and culture has a big part to play in its future,” says Leader of Basildon Council Councillor Andrew Baggott. “We are also committed to climate change and are working towards a carbon net-zero borough by 2050.”

With a new street art initiative called Our Towns, curators Doug Gillen and Charlotte Pyatt are tying together environmental and social concerns with new large-scale murals here in the Essex, UK town.

Marina Capdevila. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Partnering artists with the local schools, university, market and community organizations, Gillen and Pyatt have been introducing new public artworks all summer by international artists like Arches (Ireland), Franco ‘JAZ’ Fasoli (Argentina/Italy), and Marina Capdevila (Spain), as well as homegrown UK talents including Erin Holly, Gabriel Pitcher, INSA, Michele Curtis, and Helen Bur.

Helen Bur. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Aruallan)

While some on the roster are known for their street art and others have backgrounds in more formal studio practice, collectively perhaps their works are softening some of the brutalist edges of this town of just over 100,000 residents.

Helen Bur. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Aruallan)

Owing its name to an idea of challenging ourselves to see art and public space in original and meaningful ways that affect positive change, the Re:Framed project is steered by two pros in street art cultural production and analysis. “We are dedicated to developing new and innovative strategies to reposition the role of culture in social and environmental conversations,” says a joint statement by the curators.

“The Our Towns: Climate project will be our most ambitious to date, the legacy for which will see Basildon join the growing number of cities and towns across the world adopting the Global Goals.”

Giving their partnership the moniker Re:FRAMED, Pyatt and Gillen have worked in production, strategy, consultancy and documentation with art on the streets for approximately the last decade and plan to coalesce artists and organizations around social and environmental themes going forward. With high-quality artists and artworks like these, you can look forward to the two reframing both contexts and conversations in public space in their future.

Aches. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Gabriel Pitcher. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Erin Holly. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Aruallan)
Franco Fasoli. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Aurallan)
Franco Fasoli. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Michelle Curtis. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Michelle Curtis. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Michelle Curtis. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Insa. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Insa. “Our Towns”. Basildon, UK. September 2021. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Our Towns
Location Basildon, UK

Local assistants with whom this production would not have been possible without;

Ben Stewart | @fusion_walls        
Louis Cutts | @l.a.cutts.design
Scotty Brave | @bravearts
Annie | @lettersbetogether
Yuki Aruga | @yuki.aruga



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Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. Installation Shots

Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. Installation Shots

You saw our announcement for the new exhibit At the Vanguard: Bristol Opens Exhibition On Evolution of Global Movement of Street Art and now you get a chance to see the actual shoe newly installed. Dense and rich with original artwork, photography, and ephemera, Vanguard is a studious presentation that confidently lays claim to Bristols place in the history of graffiti and street art.

Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)
Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement. General install shot. Bristol Museums. Bristol, UK. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement is kindly supported by Vans. Vanguard | Bristol Street Art: The Evolution of a Global Movement
M Shed, Bristol, BS1 4RN
Saturday 26 June 2021 – Sunday 31 October 2021
Admission £8 adult* / £7 concession* (*Tickets include £1 voluntary donation to Bristol Museums Development Trust)

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BSA Film Friday: 06.11.21

BSA Film Friday: 06.11.21

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

Now screening:
1. “Bubble Tea” with Sofles
2. Doug Gillem Discusses Stereotypes in Street Art
3. Vero Rivera in Columbia, SC. Via Tost Films

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BSA Special Feature: “Bubble Tea” with Sofles

Sofles gives us such beautiful Fridays – with a jump in his step and a flair in the sweep of his arm. It’s bubble time!

Our Expectations of Street Art’s Role in Projecting and Reflecting Values

It is not a surprise that street art reflects the culture back to itself, including elements that some will find objectionable or disgusting – this has always been true. As the so-called “culture” of street art becomes professionalized and monetized and regarded as legitimate by institutions and commercial interests like brands, we continue to hear that it is now being, to some extent, more closely examined. Doug Gillen of FifthWall TV explores criticisms of one artist’s work – FinDac – in regard to Asian tropes and stereotypes.

People have mentioned FinDac’s work for the last half-decade at least, so it is interesting that a current heated awareness regarding identity politics is pushing the conversation further. Truthfully, stereotypes about blacks, gays, the police, media, the military, women, men, religious institutions, politicians, sex roles, gender roles, political parties, geopolitics… have always been on display in myriad forms in street art and graffiti. It can be a worthwhile exercise when we begin to examine them in greater detail.

Vero Rivera in Columbia, SC. Via Tost Films

A commission for a suburban coffee shop mural, this hand painted work by Vero Rivera is a few steps removed from the street art and graffiti scene that first sparked out interest decades ago. The dynamics are different, but the spirit of creativity is the same.

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“Change” A Short Film By Doug Gillen in Kosovo

“Change” A Short Film By Doug Gillen in Kosovo

“This is a celebration of them directly,” artist Helen Bur says as she describes her new six-story high painting in Ferizaj, Kosovo. Warm and idiosyncratic, it is a candid photo of local youth whom she paints in this once war-torn area. Even today, about 20 years after the end of hostilities and with the enormous “peace-keeping” US Camp Bondsteel nearby, a mixture of Albanians, Serbs, and Roma all are rebuilding a common life in the shadow of not-so-past events.

Axel Void and Helen Bur. Mural Fest Kosovo/Void Projects. Ferizaj/Kosovo. (photo © Besart Bega)

Given such taut social politics that govern the memories and leave their mark on the daily lives of residents, Scottish film maker Doug Gillen jumped in to record the observations and experiences of artists and local creators who were there for a mural festival. One current fashion for murals created for these public art events is to be “responsive” to the community. Undoubtedly you can see that many of these are reflecting the environment – including more literally the botanicals of the region.

Local Musician. Mural Fest Kosovo/Void Projects. Ferizaj/Kosovo. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Elsewhere Gillen captures the stories of locals, including one resident who recalls being ‘usurped’ by a ‘hooligan’ who took over her attic and who brought sex workers there during the conflict. You can sense the relief she feels to finally tell her story in a public way. These singular stories provide clarity and can be rather jewel-like.

Muralist Ampparito touches on the denial that is also in play as he describes his mural which addresses the ultimate non-controversial topic bound to engage a respectable constituency: weather.

Aruallan and Axel Void. Mural Fest Kosovo/Void Projects. Ferizaj/Kosovo. (photo © Aruallan)

“When you arrive at a place that you don’t know and you want to talk about serious stuff” the artist explains with a smile, “I think you have to be careful.” For both the sensitive and the coarse, it is a given; whether its political or personal self-censorship, it will enter the life of an artist at one point. “It’s like when you don’t talk about something, sometimes you say more than if you don’t talk about it.”

You can see how the commitment to acknowledging and participating with community is realized by a talented collection of artists – like the aforementioned Ampparito, Aruallan, Micheal Beitz, Helen Bur, Emilio Cerezo, Doa Oa, Alba Fabre, Ivan Floro, Maria Jose Gallardo, Retry One, Zane Prater, Vlada Trocka and Axel Void.

A local on Ferizaj. Mural Fest Kosovo/Void Projects. Ferizaj/Kosovo. (photo © Doug Gillen)

Artist and organizer Axel Void may embody similar contradictions as he describes goals of the pro-artist organization named after himself. “In a way it’s a similar idea to every, like, Void Projects – which is pretty much trying to cut out the middle man and trying to have a more direct interaction between the artist and the people.” That being said, the annual mural festival relies on private and institutional partners, staff, professionals, and the efforts of volunteers to mount it as well as a biosphere of media professionals and amateurs and private platforms to help Void and the artists get the word out about their creations around the globe.

Executive producer Lebibe Topalli rests her finger carefully upon the local pulse, and she parses words gently when describing the challenges of mounting this event today as she thinks of Kosovo of two decades ago. To even have considerations regarding the ‘art world’ at an earlier time “would have been a luxury,” she says. 

“The difference is best recognized by the people who have experienced it.” As the debate in the street art world continues about the elusive ideal mix of factors for the perfect mural festival, filmmaker Gillen helps capture those who struggle as well with their sense of responsibility to the community.

Produced by Fifth Wall TV in collaboration with the Kosovo Mural Festival and Void Projects

Film Executive Producer Charlotte Pyatt

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BSA Film Friday: 01.15.21

BSA Film Friday: 01.15.21

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

Now screening :
1. Escif: Greenpeace, For a Sustainable City.
2. Street Art in 2020
3. Mathieu Libman: The Moon’s Is Not That Great

BSA Special Feature: Escif: Greenpeace, For a Sustainable City.

Street Art in 2020

Doug Gillen of FifthWall TV reflects on the world of street art in the year of 2020.

Mathieu Libman: The Moon’s Is Not That Great

After an astronaut returns from her lunar mission to find that the public lost all interest in the moon, the stories of the astronaut, a film director, and a bear intersect.

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