The four panels across from Woodward Gallery have provided an ongoing gallery show on the street for a handful of years now, exhibiting the work on a fine line of gallery and urbanity. The exhibit space on the Lower East Side has featured the likes of near legends Stikman and Lady Pink, and also has played host to newer players along the Street Art/ graffiti continuum including Moody, Skewville, Cash4, DarkCloud, and a number of others well known to New York scene watchers. The space itself is a little more polished than it used to be and there are no dumpsters or the rancid stench of urine to accompany your viewing pleasure, but that’s what you have to put up with as Manhattan continues it’s descending transformation into maul of America.
Saturday night during the print show opening at Woodward that features a number of Street Artists, guests were sure to step across Eldridge to check the new installation by the emotional expressionist Kosbe, an artist whose biography and practice encompass graff, stickers, Street Art, fine art, and increasingly, Jackson Pollack. Like we said last year on BSA and Huffington Post, dude is one to watch, and if you were looking for an opportunity to dig through the layers, here’s a chaotic psycho-graphic in 4 parts splashed across the public promenade for you. Free.
More artists stopped by to put up pieces for “The Grassy Lot” show, an impromptu little get-together of 15 artists in a little bit of heaven on the Lower East Side. Jaime Rojo gives us some more shots of the lot.
Joe Franquinha, life long New Yorker, told us how he assisted Street Artist QRST with his decision of subject matter for this installation: “I told QRST – Rats have lived in this lot for years so rats should be represented here. Because we have the best f*cking rats and no one is going to take that away from us.”
We’re proud to announce the “Grassy Lot Show” coming this Thursday presented by Crest Arts at the Timeshare Backyard. It’s been a little whirlwind of activity with 15 artists putting up brand new work on the walls of this oasis on the Lower East Side for you to come visit. With Keith Schwietzer and us helping Crest out here and there, and of course with Franklin doing lawn roomba duties, it is a bit of a community event. All it is missing is you! What are you doing Thursday?
Crest Arts invites you to the TimeShare Backyard for “The Grassy Lot Show”
Thursday August 25, from 6-8 pm
145 Ludlow Street between Stanton and Rivington
Admission is free.
Take off your shoes and walk in the grass and do a cartwheel while looking at brand new outside work on the walls by Bishop 203, Creepy, Gaia, General Howe, Jake Klotz, Laura Meyers, Nanook, Over Under, QRST, Quel Beast, Shandor Hassan, Travis Simon, Veng, XAM, and Yok.
Street Artist NohJColey continues to stretch his character studies and symbol-heavy storylines and build them into ever more interactive street sculpture. Not content with laborious hand cut and colored wheat-pasted flat pieces, his stuff on the street for almost a year has more dimension and engagement. Naturally, people interact with it and pretty quickly pieces are missing. Maybe it’s curiosity or maybe a Lower East Side messenger needed something to lock his bike to, but here are a couple of images of the piece as it first appeared in Manhattan, where the central form can be adjusted to simulate the figurative and literal falling that can happen in a life.
“Suicidal Tendancies”, by NohJ Coley
Like the protagonist in Don DeLillos Falling Man, Coley’s character could be a metaphor for so many in New York who are losing jobs, wages, and a frayed social net that once prevented them from hitting the pavement. While DeLilos book begins at the Twin Towers during a “time and space of falling ash and near night,” and the vision of office workers jumping out of the buildings, the simulation NohJColey creates here pertains to the plight of bankers, latinos and those affected by mental illness. With American society as a burning building, this piece is entitled “Suicidal Tendencies” and the passerby can actually participate by preventing one man from jumping to his death, see another jumping in front of a train, and witness the anguished expression of the third at the base who has sadly succeeded in his pursuit.
Below are images taken yesterday of the installation, with parts already missing. While the complete story is not told with what remains, somehow they are still interactive.
Coley spoke to Brooklyn Street Art about the stories behind the three chapter piece:
“I’m currently working on a series of interactive sculptures that are focused on recognizing mental illness. Suicidal Tendencies, which is the first of the three is of course concentrated on suicide. The main figure is a stock broker who is unable to continue existing after the stock market has crashed. So, with his office windows ajar he jumps out. He is partially in purgatory and partially in what we know as existence.
When interacting with Suicidal Tendencies the main objective is to prevent two of the three subjects from committing the act of suicide. When in front of the main figure the viewer is meant to pull the subject up, averting the subject from committing the act of suicide. The succeeding figure is a Hispanic activist that turns to suicide after becoming exhausted with the notion of Hispanics being treated unjustly in the US. So, after another unsuccessful demonstration he comes to the conclusion that he wants to jump in front of a moving train. The main objective with the activist is to prevent the smaller figure from jumping in front of the moving train. The tertiary figure is a young college student that is too far gone to be redeemed.”
This week UR New York is rocking the four-panel spot across the street from Woodward Gallery in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. The born-and-raised New York duo, who have both done graffiti in the past, have been working hard year-round on the streets of Soho selling their art for about 3 years . With their folding tables displaying original screened and sprayed urban image collage, they’ve built a serious fan base. With themselves as their own best reps, they’ve also landed their work in shows and private collections and even corporate lobbies. Always hustling and always challenging themselves to take it to the next level, they’re pretty stoked to fill this spot that has hosted a number of New York’s hometown favorite Street Artists over the last few years.
To mark the new installation, 2easae and Ski wanted to do something new and creative so they painted everything by hand instead of using screens and stencils. The results are somehow more personal and inviting. Stretching beyond their comfort level, they also took on something more abstract. When an artist does something courageous like going outside what is safe for them, you gotta applaud. According to the guys, the end result was a feeling that they were more connected to this piece than others they’ve worked on. They also scored a greater appreciation for artists who work by hand.
Brooklyn Street Art: Can you talk a little about the actual shapes and symbols you used and what pushed you toward them?
UR New York: We decided to use different symbols, and arrows in particular, to represent the different directions we may take in life. When you look at our work traditionally it’s detailed and defined with elements of graffiti. We started this project taking a completely different route. We figured we’d use simple imagery to convey an abstract feeling.
Brooklyn Street Art:Can each panel stand as a piece by itself or is it meant to be as a single piece only?
UR New York: The initial thought was for the four panels to create a narrative. Artistically each panel was structured to stand alone but when they come together you grasp the full vision of the piece.
Brooklyn Street Art:Talk a little bit about how you feel about changing it up stylistically. UR New York: Changing our style of work is refreshing. As much as we love urban landscapes and graffiti, we decided to try something different and slightly out of our element. We get a thrill out of trying new techniques and styles. Our audience and supporters are always expecting something fresh and new. It’s exciting to deliver and get positive and creative feedback.
Brooklyn Street Art: Do you always bring graffiti to the game? UR New York: Our style is as unique as a fingerprint but an element of graffiti will always play a role in our artwork. It’s part of our background and we pay homage to the roots and culture of where this all started for us.
Video Debut of “Eye of the Beholder”, starring UR New York in studio.
There is an idea worth spreading! JR, Street Artist, is the 2011 recipient of the TED prize:
“JR creates what might be called “pervasive art.” Working with a team of volunteers in various urban environments, he mounts enormous black-and-white photo canvases that spread on the buildings of the slums around Paris, on the walls in the Middle East, on broken bridges in Africa, and across the favelas of Brazil. These images become part of the local landscape and capture people’s attention and imagination around the world.”
Read more on the TED site and watch this gorgeous and moving video testifying to gutsy proactive engagement with the world and the power of the creative spirit that transcends silly art school armchair criticism.
Chris Stain for No Longer Empty
Chris Stain (with help from his buddy Burt Reynolds) transforms an 84 foot wall in Brooklyn with a tribute to the working class that built this city, specifically those who worked in Dumbo and the Navy Yard.
“30 Days in Brooklyn”
Rusty Ralston wants to bring his photo essay out to the streets of New York in December. He needs your help too!
Brooklyn Artist Tara McPherson Prepares for Show at Jonathan Levine
To know her is to love her. Hell, we don’t even know her but still love her from afar… as her reputation as an artist and a fine person percolates around here in Brooklyn. Also, what a great role model for girls and young women who want to make their life their art and their art their life. Check out preview pics over at Arrested Motion.
Recently released in it’s entirety, this influential and beautiful film is now available to you here for free. It’s the story of a group of artist kids on Manhattan’s Lower East Side who encouraged each other to continue to experiment and grow – in only the germinating way that NYC can do it. We know how important community is for artists, and thankfully New York is still a fertile soil for discovery and innovation.
Yes, I do worry. Especially when it is snowing like crazy and my bike wheels are about to slide across one of those large metal slabs the City puts across gaping construction holes.Those huge hell platters are slicker than snot on a doornob and liable to deposit me directly under a delivery truck.
Don’t Worry, One Day Things Will Get Better; Happiness is a Warm Gun. (TrustoCorp)
For those of you who would understandably get up-in-arms about these very realistic signs – placement is key.
If I thought these would actually cause accidents I would not think it was funny anymore, but these were in an obviously not correct location. But hey TrustoCorp! Like the drag queens say, “two points for ‘realness’, honey”.
Here’s that Beatles song I was referencing above- and a rather clever black and white Dada-esque video to accompany it. People used to say this song was written about smack, so the video style strikes a vein.