All posts tagged: FIlm

BSA Film Friday: 04.19.19

BSA Film Friday: 04.19.19

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

Now screening :
1. Okuda San Miguel. The World is Ours
2. Vhils – Annihilation
3. C215 Au Pantheon
4. On Set / Kenny Scharf

BSA Special Feature: Okuda San Miguel. The World is Ours

The awesome expanse of one artists’ life during the course of a year, as expressed visually in the travels of Okuda San Miguel. Prolific, pro-people, kaleidoscopic in his imaginings; Okuda’s public works are as engaging as any artist working outside today, and in some cases, very inspiring. This is a good era for the artist, and with talented people on his team galavanting the globe, at this moment the world is theirs.

Okuda San Miguel. The World is Ours

Vhils – Annihilation

Finding the right partner for collaboration is no easy matter, and Vhils is here studying the contrasts and shiny chaos of the US in late stage capitalism, finding that harmony can be struck from the most unlikely of pairings. Europeans can’t believe the disparity here, and we know its setting aflame the very fabric of our society – but it’s so dazzling as it burns. Feel your pulse quicken as you see Vhils chip away at the veneer with Shepard, Retna, and a jackhammer.

C215 Au Pantheon

Stencil master C215 continues his move into other arenas, in this case the crypt of the Pantheon with his portraits of great men and women. Full of character and dignity, his people are somehow brought to life in his depictions through multi-layered stencils.

On Set / Kenny Scharf

Is this a commentary on the times, or a commentary on The Times? Maybe Kenny knows

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“MARTHA: A Picture Story” Premieres at Tribeca. A Film By Selina Miles.

“MARTHA: A Picture Story” Premieres at Tribeca. A Film By Selina Miles.


BSA Exclusive Announcement
and interview with the director and the star of


MARTHA

A Picture Story

A Documentary by Selina Miles

MARTHA: A Picture Story. A film by Selina Miles. (still from the movie)

BSA is proud to announce the world premiere of Selina Miles’ new full-length documentary on the life and career of New York photographer Martha Cooper at the Tribeca Film Festival next month.  Separated by four decades and an ocean or two, the Australian film director and the American photographer – each of whom has garnered serious respect in the myriad subcultures of art-in-the-streets with phenomenal storytelling abilities and an innate sense of timing – together land a remarkable film capturing life as a street-shooter, making the multi-chaptered story sing.

It is a fascinating visual sweep that illustrates the unusually gratifying paths that this ever-curious ethnologist charts on the streets (and below them) worldwide since receiving her first camera from her father at age three. The film is a well illustrated collage of a remarkable 70 plus year span showcasing Coopers’ 6th sense for people, urban culture, and burgeoning subculture. Viewers get to see the huge variety of interests she has investigated with amiable warmth and academic rigor – from the Peace Corps in Thailand to tattoos in Japan to graffiti train writing in New York to the daily lives of people in her native Baltimore.

MARTHA: A Picture Story. A film by Selina Miles. (still from the movie)

With ample interviews and vintage video footage never seen before, “MARTHA: A Picture Story” follows Ms. Cooper across continents into the streets, through tunnels and over rooftops to provide illustrative background contexts for her decisions, her driving motivations, and her pure determination to succeed as a professional photographer – despite man-made and societal adversity.

We’ve been very fortunate to see this diamond of a documentary up close, and we can say that MARTHA is legitimate crowd-pleaser.

MARTHA: A Picture Story. A film by Selina Miles. (still from the movie)

BSA spoke with Ms. Cooper and Ms. Miles for this auspicious announcement day about the new movie:

BSA: Your personal and professional history has often been about overcoming challenges and pushing aside barriers. Is there one new challenge you have gone beyond to participate fully in a documentary about you?
Martha Cooper: Well like most photographers, I’m more comfortable behind the camera than in front of it especially when speaking. I can’t say I’ve gotten good about overcoming being filmed, but I tried hard to give good footage.

MARTHA: A Picture Story. A film by Selina Miles. (still from the movie)

BSA: One of the challenges of being a doc filmmaker is the number of hats you have to wear – sometimes perhaps feeling like you have to do everything yourself.  What did you discover about your preferred role/s on a film?
Selina Miles: Making a documentary is certainly a dynamic job and requires a mix of technical, social and creative skills. Learning from a photojournalist with 50 years experience such as Martha has been a wonderful experience. I started my career in video making by mucking around with friends making graffiti videos and shooting street art festivals, and the DIY spirit of both of these art forms really gave me an advantage on this project.

Not all directors know how to shoot or how to edit, but thanks to these early experiences I do know a little about all of these disciplines. Being able to just grab a camera and shoot, or to edit my own little concept videos was very handy in getting the project off the ground. That being said, being able to employ an amazing editor like Simon Njoo and having the mentorship of producers like Jennifer Peedom has also been a dream come true and really helped take this film to the next level. 

BSA: With the new documentary many people will learn about a more dimensional photographer than the one they most frequently associate with the name Martha Cooper. Why is this important?
Martha Cooper: I’m often called a graffiti, street art, or hip hop photographer but I don’t put myself into those categories. I would like people to understand that the common denominator in my choice of subjects is art in everyday life. I’m always looking for examples of how people are creative in their everyday lives. Graffiti is just one of many different examples.

MARTHA: A Picture Story. A film by Selina Miles. (still from the movie)

BSA: Is there a special approach or formula that one tries to follow when making a story like this for a more general audience.
Selina Miles: I think that the interesting thing about this story, in particular, is that it explores a subculture that is so misunderstood by so many people. Everybody has seen graffiti and has an idea of what it is, but I still think that few people really understand why it exists and where it came from. There’s so many tropes and ideas about graffiti and those who practice it that are just plain wrong or oversimplify a very complex idea. It’s been an enjoyable and interesting challenge for me to unpack the facts and rules of this subculture as I see them, and step them out in a way that somebody completely new to the culture can understand and appreciate Martha’s story. 

BSA: Your photos capture a time and a moment and a technique of creation, but also often the more atmospheric and cultural energy of the street. What has drawn you time and again to capture this to share? Your own curiosity?
Martha Cooper: Not exactly. As you know, I like looking for things and collecting them. Photography is a challenging quest and taking a good photo is the reward. The nature of what I’m questing for can change according to time and place but in general, the world is more interesting to me if I have a camera. The possibility of photographing something makes me look at my surroundings with a keener eye than I would without a camera.

MARTHA: A Picture Story. A film by Selina Miles. (still from the movie)

BSA: Martha stood on the shoulders of feminists before her, yet blazed some paths that were very much her own – frequently without support. What is one lesson a younger person may take from Martha Cooper when they watch this movie?
Selina Miles: Marty often says that people today don’t understand what it took to survive as a freelancer in earlier decades, especially as a woman and I completely agree. It’s a common thing that you hear but it’s very true, we are lucky these days to live in a world so connected and relatively accepting of all kinds of races, ages and sexes. That being said, there’s always going to be a frontier, and I hope that young people watching Martha’s story will be inspired to push beyond that frontier in their own way, and not be held back by anybody’s expectations of who or what they should be. And do it all the time with a smile and a sense of humor! 


MARTHA: A Picture Story.

Premiering at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival, which takes place from April 24 – May 5th. Public tickets will go on sale on Tuesday March 26 at 11am ET. Tickets are extremely limited and we recommend purchasing tickets early.

https://www.tribecafilm.com/filmguide/

https://www.tribecafilm.com/festival/tickets

Hashtags: #marthathemovie

Film Instagram: @marthathemovie

Martha Cooper Instagram: @marthacoopergram

Director’s Instagram: @selinamiles

For screening dates and locations and to purchase tickets click HERE

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BSA Film Friday: 01.11.19

BSA Film Friday: 01.11.19

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

Now screening :
1.  Ella & Pitr “Heavy Sleepers”
2. Faith XLVII Astronomia Nova, Los Angeles
3. Sights, Sounds and a Recap of Juxtapoz Clubhouse 2018
4. “60 Minutes” and JR

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BSA Special Feature: Ella & Pitr “Heavy Sleepers”

A culmination of five years of murals visible from planes, French duo Ella & Pitr nudge you awake on a sleepy Friday to say “Thank you  for being part of this story!” You didn’t even realize that you were a part of it, did you? In a way, you can see your own reflection somewhere here.

Their sleeping giants have appeared in cities around the world, often too big even for the massive rooftops they are crammed uncomfortably atop. With a true knack for childhood wonder and illustration, perhaps because they have a couple of them at home for inspiration, Ella & Pitr bring the petite rebel spirit to these characters; imperfect specimens with stylistic idiosyncrasies and sometimes ornery personalities. In the end, they were all “heavy sleepers” resting temporarily, as is often the case with (sub)urban interventions variously referred to as Street Art, public art, land art, pavement art…  Make sure you stay for the end of this video that comprised most of the giants.

Faith XLVII Astronomia Nova, Los Angeles

A moment of restive stirring tranquil wonder from artist Faith XLVII, who continues to expand her sphere of study and influence beyond the street. The 2nd installation of a hologram called “Astronomia Nova” in cooperation with artist Lyall Sprong is captured here by Cory Ring of Chopemdown Films. The Los Angeles Theatre installation in the fall was part of Summit LA 2018. The immersive site specific installation transforms the environment and becomes something new, astronomically familiar.

Sights, Sounds and a Recap of Juxtapoz Clubhouse 2018

Highlights from the Juxtapoz Clubhouse in Miami this year during the Basel art fairs, proving again the ethos of inclusivity that BSA has always been down with- and frankly that the D.I.Y. street culture demands from us.

“60 Minutes” goes behind the lens with French artist JR

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BSA Film Friday: 07.01.16

BSA Film Friday: 07.01.16

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

Now screening :

1. Chump for Trump. Ron English x The Sutcliffes
2. 100 Persianas by MVIN
3. Street Heroines by Alexandra Henry
4. Der Hampelmann – Naive Street Art in Berlin from Erik & Nils Petter

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BSA Special Feature: Chump for Trump. Ron English x The Sutcliffes

Seeing the new Ron English mural of Donald Trump in Bushwick, Brooklyn last week we were reminded of the video he released in April with a soundtrack by The Sutcliffes, a Beatles tribute band. It uses footage from Trump rallies and commercials interspersed with illustration and animation in an approachable folky way. Once you go down the rabbit hole of Trump satire and parody videos that have been made in the last year, you’ll find enough to begin a film festival.

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Ron English brings Donald Trump as Humpty Dumpty on a wall – in collaboration with The Bushwick Collective and Mana Urban Art Projects. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

100 Persianas by MVIN

A few months ago eL Seed created a multi building mural in Cairo that can only be seen in toto from a specific physical vantage point. Here is a similar project where the only way to appreciate a tag in Barcelona from MVIN is to assemble a grid of photos from 100 pull-down gates (persianas)  he painted.

Check out the Instagram account that documents the progress here.

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Street Heroines by Alexandra Henry

BSA has supported many great Kickstarters and this is one that we are truly excited about. Of course we’ve brought you work from many of the women whom Ms. Henry is including in this documentary, but there are faces we haven’t seen before and people whose stories haven’t been told.

She’s almost done filming but the project needs your help and we urge you to help get her over the finish line!

 Please click on the link to help Alexandra Henry complete her project: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/274344236/street-heroines

Der Hampelmann – Naive Street Art in Berlin from Erik & Nils Petter

Okay, we try to stay away from “cute”. This is a rare exception because it is interactive art on the street and it hearkens back to simple methods of entertaining children and, um, its so damn cute.

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BSA Film Friday: 03.25.16

BSA Film Friday: 03.25.16

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

Now screening :

1. Seve Garza Paints Homeless People in Austin
2. Stik: London Street Artist by Ben Hanratty
3. Chris Dyer’s Artventure: Florida Art Road Trip
4. Time Travel Subway Car

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BSA Special Feature: Seve Garza Paints Homeless People in Austin

It only takes one person to make a difference.

You.

Never mind the hype and all those things that make you forget what Street Art can do. Artist Seve Garza is not going to change the world but he may change a couple of people’s world with his personal brand of art activism. It’s better than smugly commenting on an Internet forum.

 

Stik: London Street Artist by Ben Hanratty

That was my first documentary film, but definitely hope to make more. He was a really interesting man, very intelligent,” says 18 year old film maker Ben Hanratty, who is just completing his first year studying film and television at University of the Arts in London.  He’s done a splendid job and we all learn a great deal about the artist and the man, Stik, thanks to Mr. Hanratty.

 

Chris Dyer’s Artventure: Florida Art Road Trip

Painter Chris Dyer is often on an artventure with his work, interacting with people at festivals who are celebrating spirituality and positivity and advocating for an enlightened approach to heavy issues. Here’s the latest installment that follows Chris and many “LIVE” painters to the Zen Awakening Festival in Orlando, Florida to the Dali Museum in St. Petersburg and the Moksha Family party in Miami while the Basel madness is happening.

Basically we really just want to ride that giant slide at the Zen Awakening Festival!! With this fresh new video Chris sends positive vibes out to the BSA family for this holiday weekend.

Time Travel Subway Car

Because, you know, what seeds you plant today will grow….

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BSA Film Friday: 05.29.15

BSA Film Friday: 05.29.15

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

Now screening :

1. Kiwie and Zabou in Cyprus
2. Pol Corona in Vicente Lopez (Buenos Aires)
3. Clemens Behr at ALT!rove Street Festival 2015
4. Alberonero at ALT!rove Street Festival 2015.

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BSA Special Feature: Kiwie and Zabou in Cyprus

We don’t often get to post Street Art from Cyprus, but here is an entertaining look at the recent Street Life Festival in Limassol. Mainly we posted it because Kiwie from Latvia is a ham in front of the camera and Friday is a perfect time to get up and dance!

Pol Corona in Vicente Lopez (Buenos Aires) at Nai’s house

It’s barbecue and painting season bro. Come on over.

 

 

Clemens Behr at ALT!rove Street Festival 2015

Two murals in a row from this years ALT!rove – Street Art Festival in Italy, both videos from Blind Eye Factory. Going with this years theme of Abstractism, ALT!rove brought artist including 108, Alberonero, Giorgio Bartocci, Clemens Behr, Ciredz, Erosie, Graphic Surgery, Sbagliato, Sten Lex and Tellas.

Alberonero at ALT!rove Street Festival 2015.

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BSA Film Friday: 01.09.15

BSA Film Friday: 01.09.15

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

Now screening :

1. ROME in the Street and the Gallery by Dioniso Punk
2. Hendrik Beikirch (ECB): East Harbor in the Netherlands
3. Michael Beerens – “Master”
4. “Art As A Weapon” Trailer

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BSA Special Feature: ROME in the Street and the Gallery by Dioniso Punk

The punk rock connection to graffiti is as strong as any subculture’s – or of any people who feel marginalized in effect or practice by the dominant culture preventing their voice. The narrative that graffiti belongs exclusively to Hip Hop has been posited and disproved over time; as Jesus said, “Graffitti belongs to everyone.” *

Modern French academics and intellectuals have celebrated graffiti and Street Art by way of political protest at least since the late 1960s and early 70s, first with the Situationists and later with the aesthetics and artistry of people like Ernest Pignon-Ernest and Gérard Zlotykamien.

In “Street & Gallery” we see that the need for expression, illegal and otherwise, is as urgent as ever in the Street Art scene in Rome today and for many it is a means to express opinions and philosophies that they hope will in turn push greater society forward in some way. For others it is simply to fight the stagnation.

Billed as an “unofficial video” by Dioniso Punk, the short documentary takes you into the kitchen and studio and gallery and street as a variety of artists, academics, vegetable vendors and philosophers narrate the pragmatic and the existential. Call it activism, call it a yearning for freedom, call it being generally pissed off at institutional inertia – the spirit of graffiti and it’s multiple urban art corollaries will not die. Either will arena rock and roll, despite early punk’s best wishes.

Interesting to note that the globalization of capital has not globalized all banks accounts and has thrust the xenophobia of the Italian middle class into a harsh light here, as it has elsewhere in so-called developed countries. Here we see a modern Italy struggling with ideological self-beliefs about justice and equality and wondering how they apply to a new immigrant class who has no interest in their cogitations. Moving from the educated class studio environment, the trained artist suddenly finds a social/political role, and for the first time perhaps contemplates it. Meanwhile, many in the street have never seen the inside of a studio and have a slightly different take on the state of things. Let the conversation continue.

 

Support was also provided by Maam – Museo dell’Altro e dell’Altrove di Metropoliz, Dorothy Circus Gallery, M.U.Ro. – Museo Urban di Roma, Sacripante Gallery, SMAC – Segni Mutanti.
 
A nod to the artists whose work is shown in the video, including Nicola “Nic” Alessandrini, Jim Avignon, Gary Baseman, Mister Thoms, Eduardo Kobra, David “Diavù” Vecchiato, Veronica Montanino, Stefania Fabrizi, Danilo Bucchi, Mauro Maugliani, Ron English, Beau Stanton, Mr. Klevra, Finbarr “Fin” DAC, Omino71, David Pompili, Ray Caesar, Afarin Sajedi, Kathie Olivas, Pablo Mesa Capella e Gonzalo Orquìn, Massimo Attardi, Gian Maria Tosatti, Malo Farfan, Franco Losvizzero, Davide Dormino, Alessandro Ferraro, Mauro Cuppone, Leonardo “Leo” Morichetti, Mauro Sgarbi, Gio Pistone, Zelda Bomba, Micaela Lattanzio, HOPNN, Massimo Iezzi, Sabrina Dan, Jago, Giovanna Ranaldi, Santino Drago, Alessandro Sardella, Fabio Mariani, Marco Casolino, Veks Van Hillik, Hogre, Dilkabear, Lucamaleonte, Diamond, Alice Pasquini, Paolo Petrangeli.

Hendrik Beikirch: East Harbor in the Netherlands

Hendrik Beikirch traveled to Heerlen in the Netherlands to paint a new mural over three and a half days. Organized by Heerlen Murals, the wizened, troubled subject adds to the series of images ECB has been creating across many walls in the last handful of years.

 

Michael Beerens – “Master”

 Last summer the Frenchman Beerens took a trip out into the mountains and created a piece on a a small abandoned building. Ah, summer, come thou near…

 

“Art As A Weapon” Trailer

From Breadtruck Films, the new documentary focuses on a school in Myanmar (Burma) that teaches street art as a form of non-violent struggle. Street Artists Shepard Fairey and JR figure into the story, as does the military, art as a weapon, and art as a tool for revolution.

 

* Quote from Jesus Cordero, aerosol sales associate at Near Miss Hardware store in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

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BSA Film Friday 12.05.14

BSA Film Friday 12.05.14

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

Now screening :

1. Street Artist GAIA, Super Modernity in Italy, Austria, Turkey
2. JR: RIVAGES  a film by Guillaume Cagniard
3. Curiot at the Mexico City’s Youth Institute

BSA Special Feature: Street Artist GAIA, Super Modernity in Italy, Austria, Turkey

“Traversing places in order to respond to place, what an absurd proposition.”

And yet, that is what Street Artist Gaia has been doing for the last 3 years or so.  In route he has been seeing many other artists doing the same thing, and has been feeling super modern about it.

While Street Art grew out of the graffiti tradition of tagging your local city with your name and your artwork and calling it a day, few are satisfied with that audience today. True fame happens via the Internet and mural festivals, and Gaia has made it one of his goals to study the history and culture of his host city and the resulting art works have been affected by his self-education and observation.

In this new video mini-treatise, an existential examination of his own journey to this point, Gaia poses questions while cleverly jabbing at the roving rootless lifestyle that has arrested many artists in the Street Art scene; reveling in its benefits — possibly counting its costs.

The petite piece is scored by Max Muffler in a postmodern electronic timber, evoking the charging swing of perpetual cross-cultural travel that can be rich and repetitively banal.

Sounds like the beginning of a larger work to come.

 

 

JR: RIVAGES  a film by Guillaume Cagniard

 

Curiot at the Mexico City’s Youth Institute

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31 Days of Mystery: “Banksy Does New York”

31 Days of Mystery: “Banksy Does New York”

The Director and Producers Talk About Their New Street Art Documentary.

The Banksy show is about to begin again. For those who are not familiar with what that statement implies, you’ll definitely be surprised.

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Capturing Banksy. Police stuffing B-A-N-K-S-Y balloons in the back of a van on Day 31 of the street artists month-long residency on the streets of New York. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“Banksy Does New York”, a new documentary by director Chris Moukarbel, meticulously culls and artfully arranges the play and the actors for you in just over an hour with new revelations popping up every few minutes – and you may not believe what you actually missed. But don’t feel bad; everyone missed something during the one-month “Better Out Than In” residency of the Brisol-based street artist during October, 2013. Luckily Moukarbel has done the hard work of sifting through the thousands of Instagram posts, Tweets, YouTube videos, and Banksy’s own digital clues to deftly tell you the story, or rather, stories.

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Banksy (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The latest HBO documentary, which airs November 17th, confronts the conventions of typical documentary making by compiling user-generated digital content, or crowd-sourcing the thousands of individual perspectives that occurred in tandem as the new works were unveiled on the streets of New York’s five boroughs. (Full disclosure: We are both interviewed in it.)

“There’s no way we could have gotten cameras everywhere even if we were trying and if we wanted to,” said Moukarbel at a special screening in Manhattan at HBO’s offices last week for many of the “content creators” whose work is woven together to reveal the larger narratives arising from the events.

“No one really knew what Banksy was doing. No one had put a frame around it,” says Chris as he describes the process of allowing the stories to tell him and producer Jack Turner what actually happened. “I mean he so expertly used social media,” says Turner, “Having an Instagram account from the first day — he invented a way for communicating his work and created a following for it and created an event that is a work itself.”

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Banksy (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Aside from the mechanics of the unfolding dramas, “Banksy Does New York” attempts to give many of the actors center stage here where other film makers would have relegated them to the roles of extras. Out of town vloggers drive into the city to record their daily discoveries, bonafide Banksy hunters who pool their clues in real time virtually and race to discover the new piece before it is stolen or vandalized, neighborhood entrepreneurs who charge a fee to onlookers for peeking at the paintings, and even the human stories behind the public heist and subsequent art sale that is arranged for one of the sculptures.

Somehow the elusive street artist pulling strings behind the scenes comes off as a sardonic populist everyman although he probably really is just a flagrant [insert your personal projection here]. By removing himself from the show, everyone else is revealed.

And they are nearly all here too. Like the fictional nightlife doyen Stefon Zolesky on Saturday Night Live might say, “This club has everything”; artists, fans, intellectuals, court jesters, minstrels, charlatans, sideshows, soldiers, police, politicians, a priest, dogs, passion, sweetness, sarcasm, irony, jealousy, chicanery, a Greek chorus, car chases, a few fights, a couple of heartfelt speeches, some arrests, bleating lambs being lead to slaughter.

… And a winking wizard somewhere behind the curtain.

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Banksy (photo via iPhone © Jaime Rojo)

Like we said last year as the month drew to a close in an article entitled Banksy’s Final Trick, “No longer asking, ‘Who is Banksy’, many strolling New Yorkers this October were only half-kidding when they would point to nearly any scene or object on the street and ask each other, ‘Is that a Banksy?’”

We turned the interview tables on director Chris Moukarbel and producer Jack Turner to see how they developed their story for “Banksy Does New York”.

Brooklyn Street Art: They say that a documentary filmmaker can’t really have a story in mind going in to the project – because the story reveals itself as you go. Did you see the story developing as you met people and looked at video?
Chris Moukarbel: No one had really looked at the residency in its entirety so we felt like archeologists piecing together all these bits of information and trying to create a complete vision of what went down that month. Certain themes began to emerge and it was interesting to find where the work was actually pointing. The locations of each piece appeared random and actually were incredibly important to how you were supposed to see the work. Sometimes you realized that the work itself only served to bring peoples attention to the significance of the location.

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Banksy (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: There are so many moving parts in this story – the enigmatic artist, the illegal nature of the work, the intersection with social media, the unpredictable nature of the responses. Was this a story that was difficult to get your hands around?
Jack Turner: Good question…the basic idea from the start was simply to relive that month-long circus for those people who were not aware, not in NYC or just missed it. To be honest, we originally thought that a sequential catalogue of the work would feel repetitive – but as we did more research, we found that each of the works created vastly different reactions from the public and they helped us explore all of these themes. We can only draw our own meaning from some of the work but that is when the public reaction becomes part of the work itself – which is why public art, street art and graffiti exist.

Brooklyn Street Art: Had you had much exposure to the Street Art and graffiti worlds previous to taking on this project? What surprised you about it that you wouldn’t have expected?
Chris Moukarbel: I was never a part of the street art world but I have an art background and a lot of my work was site specific. I would create pieces that were meant to live online or on public access TV, as well as street pieces. It was interesting to get to know more about an art world with its own language – available in plain view of New Yorkers.

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Banksy (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: What element first attracted your interest in the Banksy story when you heard that he had executed this residency in New York?
Chris Moukarbel: When HBO approached us about making the film I felt like it could be a great archive of an artists work and also a snapshot of the Internet for one month. I love public art and I was interested in the way that Banksy was using the Internet and social media as if it were the street.

Brooklyn Street Art: After seeing “Exit Through the Gift Shop” many people reported feeling like they were more confused than before about Banksy and his story. How would you like people to feel after “Banksy Does New York?”
Jack Turner: Banksy is an incredibly prolific artist and this film covers only one of the many chapters in his career. By remaining anonymous, Banksy takes the focus away from the artist or the source and he puts the focus on the statement and the work. There is a reason that he is the most infamous artist working today, he represents an idea that many people identify with…and he is really funny! I think this film, more than anything, highlights how well he uses social media to his disposal.

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Banksy. Still from “Banksy Does New York” (courtesy © HBO Films)

Brooklyn Street Art: You must have imagined what a response might be from Banksy to your film. What do you think he will think of this piece?
Jack Turner: It is extremely important in any project that Chris or I do to make sure that we present the whole story in a truthful way. That is why we have had such success accessing user-generated footage. We went from having a one camera crew, as documentaries are often made, to having a thousand cameras throughout the city – each giving us footage that reflects what really happened. Maybe Banksy will love it, maybe he will hate it – but the most important thing to us is that he feels like it is a true reflection of what happened over the course of that month.

Brooklyn Street Art: As producers and the director, do you think of yourselves as artists, reporters, sociologists, detectives?
Jack Turner: A couple years ago a friend of mine said that making a documentary is like getting paid (very little) to learn an enormous amount about something. I’ll take that.
Chris Moukarbel: I think of myself as a storyteller. In a way, I was still a storyteller when I was making fine art but now I’m using a popular medium that reaches a wider audience.

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Banksy. Still from “Banksy Does New York” (courtesy © HBO Films)

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Banksy. Still from “Banksy Does New York” (courtesy © HBO Films)

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Banksy. Still from “Banksy Does New York” (courtesy © HBO Films)

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Banksy. Still from “Banksy Does New York” (courtesy © HBO Films)

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Banksy. Still from “Banksy Does New York” (courtesy © HBO Films)

Banksy Does New York airs November 17 on HBO and is available now on HBO GO.

Director: Chris Moukarbel
Producers: Chris Moukarbel, Jack Turner
Executive producer: Sheila Nevins
Directors of photography: Mai Iskander, Karim Raoul
Editor: Jennifer Harrington
Production companies: Matador Content, Permanent Wave, Home Box Office

No rating, 70 minutes

 

 

 

 

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This article is also published on The Huffington Post

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BSA Film Friday: 07.11.14

BSA Film Friday: 07.11.14

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

Now screening :

1. Auckland’s Al Fresco Festival
2.”Where The Food Grows” by Noah Throop
3. Herakut: You Are A Marvel.
4. Pils – Automotywacja (Motivation)
5. Rowdy – “Black Cab To Rehab” by Creative Urban Industries

BSA Special Feature: Auckland’s Al Fresco Festival

A fresh look at Al Fresco and the pentameter of motion here as New Zealands own public/private community based street art festival came back for its second iteration this May. A nicely polished piece like this is the product of a lot of work, inspiration, and organizing and a shout out to Ross Liew and the Cut Collective and Cleo Barnett for good work.

Where The Food Grows by Noah Throop

“Having the hens on fresh pasture lets them express their chicken-ness”

Usually on our Film Friday section we include one short film or video not related to Street Art, Graffiti or Urban Art. Often it is a video to welcome the weekend and cheer you up with some silly, fun content. This time we’d like to share with you a short film about FOOD. Food right? Well food is a very complex topic, from what we eat to where we eat to where the food is grown and how it reaches our tables and eventually our mouths. At at time when small family farming is almost gone from our modern production of food and some city neighborhoods can’t even get access to a grocery store, here is a documentary portrait of a small family farm in Byron Bay, NSW Australia. It’s worth a conversation about where the food grows.

 

Herakut: You Are A Marvel. From LeBasse Projects

“We must all work to make the world worthy of it’s children.”

Agreed. By the way, Herakut is a marvel.

Pils – Automotywacja (Motivation)

Legal or illegal, dudes are still painting man. Remember all those trains back in the day NYC? This is  Polish rapper Pils singing about motivation in 2014, yo. Maybe he is in Rzeszów?

Disclaimer: we don’t know what the lyrics are saying so if there’s a swear word, sorry.

Rowdy – “Black Cab To Rehab” by Creative Urban Industries

And finally, a crocodile cartoon that will remind you of New York traffic.

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BSA Film Friday: 05.10.13

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

Now screening: Narcélio Grud Food Painting, Beerens Snail Work, El Mac’s promo for “Sangre Nueva”, and Doug Aldrich and Sam Octigan create a canvas.

BSA Special Feature:
“Tropical Hungry” food painting with Narcélio Grud

You are what you eat, son, so stay away from cow tongue!  “Tropical Hungry” follows Street Artist Narcélio Grud into the market in the city of Fortaleza, Brazil and watches him pick up the discarded fruits and vegetables. What he does with them is delicious and takes art as “Food for Thought”.   Also, it opens the conversation about what we do with the food that is not eaten, and reminds us not to waste.

A Snail Goes To Work: Michael Beerens

Set to a soundtrack of slow-jam reverie, the pacing of this video from the French Street Artist tells you that someone is in love with painting and is willing to take his time to get it right. Chill, Mr. Snail.

El Mac “Sangre Nueva”

For his new show that opened Wednesday in Denmark, this promo for El Mac presents evocative vignettes of motels, windshield wipers and pulp fiction. The mini movie rolls like the credits for a story that glides slowly through the desperation of the street in search of romance, escapism, and a little soul.

Four stars to Medvin Sobio.

Doug Aldrich and Sam Octigan: “Crossing Lines”

Here’s a recap of the recently exhibited show “Crossing Lines” featuring the collaboration of an Aussie and a New Yorky. Not specific to Street Art, although it’s possible there is some familiarity with the scene here, this video is a snapshot of how Bushwick continues to change and evolve into an arts district with the huge influx of new people over the last 5 years.

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Knock Out Film Debut from MTO “FL: Unpremeditated Movie”

French Painter and Street Artist MTO has made a great film and we want to share it with you today. It’s a knock-out.

MTO “Go, Go, Denise Go” (photo © courtesy of MTO)

Dude it’s Saturday, put down what you are doing and watch this for an hour. He painted it, filmed it, edited it, and now we want to help him release it because of three things:

  1. It’s not your typical navel gazing video for self aggrandizement or a brand-infused vehicle for moving a product, but rather it is a well told and diplomatically stinging critique of privilege, class, racism, and self delusion that permeates much of the culture. Today. Right now.

  2. The erudite use of black and white photography with freeze frames and languid meditations of open study of skies and suburban car traffic, combined with appropriate selection of music and silence, allows MTO to portray beauty and sadness at once. All tolled it is a shiny rusty sharp knife that cuts both ways, revealing the real violence of people that lies just underneath.

  3. While the story told can be grandly applied, this is a personal conceptual piece (and mystery adventure complete with clues and symbols) that he got caught up in and he decided to use his D.I.Y. skills to tell it his way with the minimum of tools and costs. No commercial conflicts.

Aside from that, as a Street Artist, the black and white photo-realistic rendering with cans, well, judge for yourself.

MTO “Doctor Robin” (photo © courtesy of MTO)

MTO “Mister Hood” (photo © courtesy of MTO)

MTO “FL” (photo © courtesy of MTO)


https://www.facebook.com/mto.page

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