We wonder how long the street art and graffiti will persist here now that the masterplan of Zaha Hadid is nearing another phase of completion. We’re guessing that you still have time to catch some of the best stuff if you are willing to scout it.
The grassroots handmade art movement has occupied the rundown and neglected sector for years, as well as the concomitant artists performance spaces, quirky small businesses and tech-forward digital art studios.
Yesterday with a local expert named Javi we scaled some of these neglected spaces to get a sense of this particular margin and discovered that old skool aerosol colorful letter styles and the new flat brush & roller tags are flourishing amongst the occasional political screed.
The new island, created by excavating the existing peninsula, may not be on time but the existing neighborhood is still popping with pop-ups and late night excursions into experimental music and scene making.
While vast swaths of smoothly graveled land await the new towers of developers dreams to punctuate the skyline, you are invited to pass through the fence and climb a small mountain of old furnishings, coats, furniture and building rubble.
This Bilbao based site-specific survey reveals a varied selection of traditional graffiti, post-graffiti; abstract, conceptual, figurative, activist, and some that is just plain smart.
Here are some new images from Entes y Pesimo of their latest mural work in Lima. Former graffiti artists, the duo are now invited around the world to do their richly saturated figurative pieces that contain symbols of culture, images of nurturing relationships, and the depiction of an overall interconnectedness of life systems.
This more complex work, which they say was difficult to photograph in its entirety, appears to be telling a series of stories related to ornithological and marine life, coupled with agricultural themes and symbols. If in fact it is about the impact of humans on Earths’ other systems, then it would explain why the expressions indicate the people here are transfixed, pensive, thoughtful, and somewhat worried. But this is just conjecture, so don’t hold us to it.
“Visionary” graffiti artist and entrepreneur, Montreal based artist Chris Dyer has crafted a style that synthesizes influences from astrology, spirituality, graffiti, Street Art, skater culture, and folk art into a modern representational style you may associate with glowing barefoot and shirtless celebrants at Burning Man or similar transformational / experiential festivals around the globe. But his work was not always strictly on the positive tip.
“I grew up in Lima, Peru till the age of 17, before I left for Montreal. It was there where I first used spray paint, as a tagger for my street gang ‘SepUlcro’,” says Chris to give a sense of his personal roots and evolution. Today he travels quite a bit and speaks about his philosophy and his art, encouraging others to express their inner world through creativity in a positive way. Along the way he has created a space in the commercial world with skateboard graphics for many brands and he markets prints, pins, hemp clothing, tapestries with his own company based in San Francisco.
Here are some recent walls he did in Lima during a trip, his first there in eight years, where he hung out and created collaboratively with local graffiti / Street Artists Entes, Pesimo and Jade. With the wisdom of a guy in his thirties, Chris revisited the land where he grew up doing a more transgressive form of work in the streets, and found a way to make it personally transformative. “This trip really healed a bunch of wounds I developed as a half-gringo in a aggressive latino city, and left me loving the country of my roots,” he says.
While prepping for a solo show at a gallery in Miraflores in December, he also did some travelling and “dropped some pieces here and there,” he says. Now back in the wintry north he is already looking forward to return to the land that formed his youth soon. “I’m pumped to return next year for “Latir Latino” festival and to drop a bigger mural for Lima to enjoy.”
Peru’s Entes & Pésimo are back in Lima after a nice few days painting in Miami last month and have brought their eye popping color palette to the side of a handful of homes that line the hills of this city. Local favorites who consider their work to be as close to the community as it can be, the graffiti artists are integral to the cityscape, telling the stories of its inhabitants one or two at a time.
Sometimes E&P consider themselves community activists because of their advocacy for people on the ground but even moreso they are poets in love with their culture. Using citric hues on forms that are serious yet resolute in their longing, perhaps the color acts as a lantern to shine a universal light on the struggle and joy intertwined with daily life in densely populated cities where populations outpace our will to meet their needs.
Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening: Sofles is Infinite, How & Nosm do a Times Square Gig, and DMJC Crew en Pura Calle in Lima Peru.
BSA Special Feature:
SOFLES – Infinite
Shooter/Editor Selina Miles takes the time-lapse genre up a level in this bubonic bass and drums slammed trip through an abandoned warehouse. Experimenting with camera perspectives and simple but effective editing tricks, the urban exploring graff talent Sofles takes on a few ninja qualities thanks to this deft presentation. Of course the style of shooting/editing wouldn’t matter if he wasn’t killing it on almost every wall with various styles and degrees of difficulty until he splits in two and competes with himself! And all this leads us to, of course, the grand crescendo – a darkly sinister piece de resistance. If your boy can’t tell you he is blown away by this little show, he’s just tryin’ to mask jealousy. Give it up.
How & Nosm in Times Square
Brooklyn’s H&N just did this gig for a clothing brand in Times Square and here’s the promo.
DMJC Crew en Pura Calle in Lima, Peru
Good to see Entes y Pesimo among this crew at the Pura Calle this month.
And for a little more context, here’s an omnibus collection promoting the Pura Calle festival which happened at the beginning of June in Lima and brought about 150,000 people to a 3-day festival of break-dancers, rappers, graffiti artists, BMXers, and skaters.
And couldn’t resist this home made recording of breakers on the street just doing it on their own in a somewhat surrealistic way. Straight up!
Naturally, there are a number of talented Street Artists who are currently working around the city also, and you’ve seen many of them here on BSA. On Noche De Los Museos, Street Artists Entes, Pesimo and Conrad collaborated on some walls together for the non-commercial event, painting directly on walls inside the gallery Sala Luis Miró Quesada Garland (see the video below).
A quick taste of their new walls, stylishly cut with some product integrations.
Stinkfish in Bogata, Columbia
Presented by Offprojekt, flourescent volts of energy jump of this portrait by Stinkfish while a curly haired cherub named Beta smacks up the hand prints next to him and street dogs meander on the sidewalk looking for scraps. Carlos Perez Ocampo wields the camera.
Goons World in Chicago
Neo primativist Street Artists Goons are introducing lucky guests to their world tonight in their hometown of Chicago. Check it son.
Atlanta based graffiti artist and Street Artist Hense has just created a massive abstract wall in Lima that radically energizes a beige facade along a major artery through the city.
His largest mural so far, and yet one more Street Artist who is expressing this new romance with color, geometry and pattern on the streets, Hense says the scale presented some technical challenges on how to retain a loose, painterly feel even as he felt dwarfed by his own work. “We used strings and ropes to create circles and lines that needed to be accurate. However, most gestures and shapes were created freehand,” he explains. Familiar with transforming architecture with his non-representational, sometimes graffiti tagged work, Hense was recently in the news for re-skinning a very traditional church in Washington.
This time he and a lead assistant and a crew of 10 professional painters took about a month to layer multiple patterns and sections and colors mainly in latex, with some aerosol, to mask out and create and re-create until Hense felt like he hit the mark. Without a distinct plan in hand, he took inspiration from the colors of the region, the nearby architecture, and the imagination machinations of the moment.
“One thing I feel is important when working on this scale is the improvisational use of tools to create the marks and shapes. In order to reach heights and lengths I had to attach brushes to extension poles to paint in hard to reach areas,” he says. “Every shape and mark that we made on the wall had to be massive to be seen from a great distance. I also wanted to leave smaller, details that would be seen by viewers close to the work.”
The project was organized by Morbo Gallery and funded by the ISIL Institute in MiraFlores, and Hense says he is really grateful for the hospitality of people he met and worked with. He’s still sort of marvelling at the project, his biggest yet.
“I’m always wanting to challenge myself and the viewer in regards to painting and what that can be.”
With very special thanks to: Jules Bay, Taylor Means, Morbo Gallery, ISIL Institute, Luar Zeid, Panorama, Angel, Paul, Pedro, Alex, Miguel, Jaime, Mayo, William, Christian Rinke, Gino Moreno, Os Villavicencio, Carlos Benvenuto, Candice House, and Elard Robles for all the hard work and making this project come to fruition.
From “Latido Americano” in Lima, Peru comes Part Two of our photo survey of a Street Art / Graffiti event that blasts vibrant color all over your keyboard and onto your desk. No amount of pollution and traffic congestion in this crowded city can get these Street Artists and their color palettes down, even as the metropolis itself can seem like it’s often enveloped in grey. Entes y Pesimo obviously have a sincere love for their city and the fortitude that it takes to get such a large group of walls and artists and resources organized to make this a success, and our hats are off to them.
From the 4th to the 15th of March in Lima “Latido Americano” took place courtesy of organizers and home-town artists Entes y Pesimo. Successfully putting it together for a second year, E&P are well respected among their peers as artists and social activists and they placed an international assortment of invited graff and Street Art people around the City of Kings, as it is called. With artists from Denmark and Mexico, Australia and Chile, “Latido Americano” exposed a number of cultures to one another in many neighborhoods in this city of immigrants and indigenous people where the sky is almost always grey and fried guinea pig is sold in the street markets.
During the event a number of process shots and finished pics were collected by Alqa Studio, and we gather them together here to give BSA readers an overview of the action. Our special thanks to Entes y Pesimo for their hard work and their contributions to BSA.
Included in the list of international and local artists participating in “Latido Americano”:
Benas (Mexico), Bien (Mexico), Charqui Punk (Chile), Cuore (Argentina), Fisek (Chile), Fog (Peru), Guache (Colombia), Hes (Chile), Inti (Chile), Jade (Peru), Jeanvi (Ecuador), KET (USA)Meki (Peru), Oz Montania (Paraguay), Pau (Chile/Germany), Phetus (USA)Saile (Ecuador), Saner (Mexico), Sego (Mexico), Soten (Denmark), Steep (Ecuador), Super (Peru/Germany), Tiws (Denmark), Toxicomano (Mexico), and Yuin (Australia), among others.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring 4 Burners Crew, Bast, Billi Kid, Bunny M, Doug Nox aka the Harlequinade, El Sol 25, Entes y Pesimo, How & Nosm, JMR, Kobra, Rubin, and Stikman.
Wild boars, fanged street cats, raging bears and bulldogs. These brightly portrayed wildlife are on many walls of Lima, signatures of Peruvian Street Artist and graffiti writer Seimiek. Just completing this new piece of a carnivorous big fish in the shantytowns of Lima, Seimiek traces the influences of his work to the typical mask from the folklore tradition. In much of his work you’ll also see the influence of Peruvian textiles and a healthy dose of Santeria, comic books, and street theater.