All posts tagged: Fefe Talavera

15 Murals and a Submarine: Amsterdam’s Urban Art Scene Now

15 Murals and a Submarine: Amsterdam’s Urban Art Scene Now

We’re very pleased today to take BSA readers to Amsterdam, where the graff/Street Art continuum reaches back more than three decades and where the vibrant scene still remains fresh and relevant right now. We’re very thankful to Ed Little and Alex Pope for taking the initiative to present the scene here for us and to give us valuable context about Amsterdam’s Urban Art Scene. If you don’t know, now you know.

By Ed Little and Alex Pope

Amsterdam has always been progressive in welcoming Urban Art. This March, artwork by Banksy was projected on the Dutch National Museum (the Rijksmuseum), in support of Syrian refugees. More than thirty years earlier, New York graffiti artists such as Seen, Dondi, Blade, Quik, Rammellzee and Futura 2000 were given their first taste of success in the high brow art world by Amsterdam gallery owner Yaki Kornblit. In 1986, Keith Haring did a commissioned mural for the Museum depot. Even before the arrival of the Americans, Amsterdam had a uniquely homegrown punk graffiti scene.

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Fefe Talavera (photo © Ed Little)

By being exposed to the New York artists so early on, Amsterdam graffiti ignited and burned on well into the nineties. Amsterdam writers like Shoe and Delta, along with foreign partners Bando and Mode 2, spread the Crime Time style throughout Europe. In 1992, the city temporarily stopped cleaning subways because of toxic chemicals in the cleaning material. The writers completely took over the subways, creating a scene reminiscent of 1970s New York, as Amsterdam bathed in graffiti euphoria.

Today’s street art and graffiti scene is relatively small, and not pushing the envelope as much as it once was. That is not the say Amsterdam doesn ́t get down anymore. Feast your eyes on a selection of commissioned murals, illegal burners and creative get ups that Amsterdam has to offer.

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Fefe Talavera (photo © Ed Little)

Here is a double header by Brazilian female artist Fefe Talavera, painted as part of the 2012 RUA Festival. The RUA Festival aims to show urban and contemporary Brazilian art next to institutionalized art of museums and galleries. According to the artist, the two heads represent two Indians wearing animal masks. The vibrant tribal color scheme really stands out against the dull grey backdrop, and is a good reminder of what a little bit of paint can do for a building.

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Zed1 (photo © Ed Little)

This is a mural by Italian artist Zed1 at creative hotspot café Roest, home of Max Zorn ́s Stick Together festival. Awesome incorporation of the building window into the depicted scene, which reads as a critique of the current cost of living.

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ETHOS (photo © Ed Little)

Here is another Brazilian mural in Amsterdam, painted by Ethos for the 2011 edition of the RUA Festival. Once again, masks are a big part of the artwork, which fits well with Ethos’ surrealist style. The mural itself functions as an awesome mask for an otherwise pretty shabby looking squat.

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Adnate x Andersen (photo © Ed Little)

Here is Australian artist Adnate along with Morten Andersen from Denmark. Nice clash of Adnate ́s photorealist style of characters and Andersen ́s abstract geometrics. Painted for the Kosmopolite Art Tour, next to an insane burner by Dems UB which unfortunately is no longer there to be seen.

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Vrankrijk (photo © Ed Little)

The legal squat Vrankrijk is one of the focal points of Amsterdam ́s squat scene. The Lichtenstein type BOOM! is a clear representation of Pop Art, which was also used as a vehicle by Fab 5 Freddy to push graffiti into the American higher art sphere in the late seventies.

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Inkie (photo © Ed Little)

Here is a commissioned work by Englishman Inkie from 2012. Painted on what was once an always tagged up parking entrance. The wall on the right was painted later on, as the original was reclaimed by street bombers, who tagged it again within no time, even crossing out the artist ́s website with the word ́toy ́. The Inkie was left untouched, probably out of respect.

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Niels “SHOE” Mulman and Adele Renault (photo © Ed Little)

A good example of calligraffiti here by Amsterdam graffiti legend Shoe. Brushstroked fill in, outlined by black spraypaint. Though Shoe ́s calligraffiti style is so uniquely his, it reminds us of that Amsterdam ́s 1970s punk graffiti feel. Pigeon portrait by Adele Renault, who went on to have a pigeon inspired exhibit at Shoe ́s Unruly Gallery.

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Rammellzee Memorial Wall (photo © Ed Little)

Above is a Rammellzee memorial wall by Shoe and friends from 2010, paying homage to the evo griller. Rammellzee was one of the twelve New York graffiti artists who each had a one month solo exhibit at Yaki Kornblit ́s gallery in the early 1980s and who would inspire Shoe and eventually many other writers worldwide to pursue a career in the streets and the fine arts world.

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The London Police (photo © Ed Little)

Here’s a large London Police commissioned mural on the Prinsengracht canal. Adopted Amsterdammers The London Police paid for their first stay in Amsterdam with t-shirts and art, and have made a comfortable living off their art ever since. The mural is located next to the street oriented Go Gallery, which has an original London Police mural from their earlier Amsterdam days.

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C215 (photo © Ed Little)

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C215 shown here with Kid Acne (photo © Ed Little)

Above are two subtle works by regular French visitor C215. The first one was painted with permission from the same Dutch family that first gave the London Police a roof over their heads. The second one is located near Amsterdam’s NDSM werf hall of fame. C215’s romantic works seem to make icons out of regular folks, which is probably why they are at their best when they are visible in the streets for everyone to see.

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Jorit. Vincent Van Gogh (photo © Ed Little)

Italian-Dutch artist Jorit did this Vincent Van Gogh portrait. The technically very impressive photorealist depiction of Van Gogh didn’t fair well with everybody, as someone gave his 2 cents by writing “Vincent wouldn ́t approve” in the bottom corner. While Jorit’s photorealistic Van Gogh may be very opposite to the subject’s impressionist style, we wanna say that we do approve. Please note that Van Gogh ́s eyeliner was also added by a third party.

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Delta (photo © Ed Little)

Here is an illegal burner by Amsterdam graffiti legend Delta from 2006. When Delta returned to graffiti in the 90s, he blew up big with his 3-D styles, which lead to a very successful career in the arts. Staying true to his roots, he remains active in his hometown streets while killing it in the galleries and even the architectural world.

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ROA (photo © Ed Little)

An early work by international superstar ROA from the mid 2000s; While it is undeniably a ROA, it is awesome to see how his style and eye for detail have developed. It is part of an original mural that also featured Bue the Warrior and Chase. The wall was mostly repainted, but the ROA has been left untouched.

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Leno, Twice and Gear (photo © Ed Little)

Above is some illegal wildstyle graffiti by the most prolific Amsterdam duo of the new millennium, Twice and Gear, along with colorful blockbuster letters by subway and trackside killer Leno on an old submarine nearby the NDSM hall of fame. Bastardilla and Stinkfish are on the bottom as well.

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NEKST tribute. (photo © Ed Little)

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Nekst Tribute (photo © Ed Little)

From Banksy projections to illegal wildstyle graffiti, all of the different aspects of today ́s modern urban art landscape are still a part of Amsterdam ́s creative daily routine. But for a city known for its liberal feel, it would be nice to see Amsterdam embrace urban art even more and reclaim its previous position as ahead of the worldwide pack.  In order to do so, we will always keep an eye on the streets.

 

We thank Alex and Ed for this sharing this good work with BSA readers.

© Text Alex Pope © Photos Ed Little

To see more Amsterdam Street Art and read interviews with the artists click Keep It Hush

 

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BSA Film Friday 09.27.13

BSA Film Friday 09.27.13

Brooklyn-Street-Art-copyright-Graphic-Surgery-screenshot-sept2013

 

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

Now screening: Graphic Surgery for “The Canals Project“, OLEK inRussia’s PRIDE“, Team OBEY Visits FAILE,  STREET ART BRAZIL via Frankfurt, and M-City in Paris.

BSA Special Feature: Graphic Surgery
for “
The Canals Project

Erris Huigens and Gysbert Zijlstra, artists from Amsterdam who together are called Graphic Surgery, work here in the industrial fields along the waterway near London’s site of the Olympics last year.  The primary audience will mostly be floating by in this area once known for local spontaneous Street Art and now curated, and Graphic Surgery’s silhouetted geometrics will be sharply cutting as you pass, minimal and constructivist while you propel through the rippling canal. All the mirroring and refracting of angles and shapes are flattened momentarily, wavering and ricocheting off and with their surroundings in black and white.

As they speak the two artists take you with them to see how it is done, and how it is inspired – capturing the lines and the physical context of placement with intention while their intersections with modernism and industry are distilled.

Graphic Surgery: The Canals Project.  London 2013. Produced by Cedar Lewisohn.

OLEK “Russia’s PRIDE”

A new video documenting Street Artist Olek as she did a public art installation in St. Petersberg last week. You can also read her interview this week with BSA here: OLEK Interview and Exclusive Photos “From Russia With Pride”.

 

Team OBEY Visits Team FAILE

A quick look inside Faile’s studio as they prepare for their currently running show at Dallas Contemporary museum.

STREET ART BRAZIL via Frankfurt

Ending today the Schrirn Kunsthalle has been showcasing the diversity of Brazilian graffiti art as Brazil was the guest of honor at the Frankfurt Book Fair.

Artists included are HERBERT BAGLIONE, GAIS, RIMON GUIMARÃES, JANA JOANA & VITCHÉ, NUNCA, ONESTO, ALEXANDRE ORION, SPETO, FEFE TALAVERA, TINHO, and ZEZÃO

 

M-City In Paris: Interview

A relaxed look at stencil Street Artist M-City as he completes a huge wall in central Paris, followed by an interview at Itinerrance Gallery by Chrixcel.

With special thanks to Fatcap.com

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“Wall & Frames”, Today’s Street Artists, Tomorrow’s Masters

There is an uneasy reluctance among some artists in the graffiti and the Street Art community to let themselves be seen hanging with art collectors or even entering galleries sometimes because they might lose credibility among peers for not being ‘street’ enough. Seeing well manicured men in pinstripes and shrieking birdberry women with tinted/straightened/plumped everything looking at your shit hanging on a wall and asking vaguely patronizing questions about it like you are an exquisite curiosity could make you go out and slice their tires after downing a few white wines.  Not surprisingly, “keeping it real” sometimes translates to keeping it out of private collections.

Even as there is an every-growing recognition of art and artists who work sometimes illegally in the street, it’s a sort of high-wire act for anyone associating with art born in margins, mainly because it forces one to face the fact that we marginalize.

Sociological considerations aside, over the last decade there is a less traditional definition of Street Artist entering the fray. The graffiti scene originally boasted a sort of grassroots uprising by the voiceless and economically disempowered, with a couple of art school kids and the occasional high-minded conceptualist to mix things up. It’s all changed of course – for myriad reasons – and art in the streets takes every form, medium, and background. Now we see fully formed artists with dazzling gallery careers bombing right next to first time Krinks writers, graffiti writers changing gears and doing carefully rendered figurative work, corporations trying their hand at culture jamming (which isn’t a stretch), and all manner of Street Art referred to as an “installation”.

A new book by Maximiliano Ruiz called “Walls & Frames”, just released last month by Gestalten, presents a large collection of artists who have traversed the now permeable definitions of “street”, gallery, collector and museum. Admittedly, this may be a brief period of popularity for Street Art, if the 1980s romance with graffiti is any indication, but there is evidence that it will endure in some form.  This time one defining difference is that many artists have already developed skill, technique, and a fan base. Clearly the street has become a venue, a laboratory for testing and working out new ideas and techniques by fine artists, and even a valued platform for marketing oneself to a wider audience.

A spread of work by Conor Harrington in “Walls and Frames”.

The resulting work, whether hanging on a nail inside or painted on a street wall, challenges our previously defined boundaries. The current crop of street art stars and debutantes, many of the strongest whom are collected here by Ruiz, continue to stay connected with the energy of the street regardless of their trajectory elsewhere. Some are relatively new, while others have been evolving their practice since the 70s, with all the players sliding in and off the street over time. The rich and varied international collection is remarkable and leaves you wanting to see more work by many of the artists. All considered, “Wall and Frames” is a gorgeously produced book giving ample evidence that many of today’s artists in the streets are tomorrow’s masters, wherever they practice.

Augustine Kofie in “Walls and Frames”.

 

Sixe in “Walls and Frames”.

Remed in “Walls and Frames”.

Anthony Lister in “Walls and Frames”.

Judith Supine in “Walls and Frames”.

Alexandros Vasmoulakis in “Walls and Frames”.

D*Face in “Walls and Frames”.

Interesni Kazki in “Walls and Frames”.

Jorge Rodriguez Gerada in “Walls and Frames”.

M-City in “Walls and Frames”.

 All images © of and courtesy of Gestalten and Maximiliano Ruiz.

Artists included are Aaron Noble, AJ Fosik, Alexandre Farto aka Vhils, Alexandros Vasmoulakis, Alëxone Dizac, Amose, Andrew McAttee, Anthony Lister, Antony Micallef, Axel Void, Basco-Vazko, Base 23, Ben Frost, Blek le Rat, Bom-K, Boris Hoppek, Boxi, C215, Cekis, Conor Harrington, D*Face, Dan Witz, Daniel Muñoz aka San, Dave Kinsey, Der, Dixon, Docteur Gecko, Doze Green, Dran, Duncan Jago aka Mr. Jago, Eine, Ekundayo, El Mac, Evan Roth, Evol, Faile, Faith 47, Fefe Talavera, Gaia, George Morton-Clark, Herakut, Herbert Baglione, Interesni Kazki, Jaybo, Jeff Soto, Jeremy Fish, Jesse Hazelip, Johnny “KMNDZ” Rodriguez, Joram Roukes, Jorge Rodriguez Gerada, Josh Keyes, JR, Judith Supine, Katrin Fridriks, Kevin Cyr, Kofie, L’Atlas, Lightgraff, Logan Hicks, Ludo, M-City, Mark Jenkins, Mark Whalen aka Kill Pixie, Maya Hayuk, Medo & Demência, Meggs, Miss Bugs, Miss Van, Morten Andersen aka M2theA, Mr. Kern, Mudwig, Nicholas Di Genova, Okuda, Patrick Evoke, Paul Insect, Pedro Matos, Peter Owen, Pose, Pure Evil, Remed, Remi/Roughe, René Almanza, Retna, Ripo, Ródez, Sam3, Sat One, Shepard Fairey, Sixe, Smash 137, Sowat, Sten & Lex, Stephan Doitschinoff, Tec, Tilt, Troy Lovegates aka Other, Turf One, Vitché;, Wendell McShine, Will Barras, and Zosen.

 

The launch; “Walls & Frames” will be presented at Gestalten Space Berlin on December 15th.

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