All posts tagged: Mexico City

BSA Top Stories As Picked by You from BSA and HuffPost in 2015

BSA Top Stories As Picked by You from BSA and HuffPost in 2015

You picked them!

Last week you saw the Top Murals and the Top Videos. Today here are our Top Stories of 2015.

BSA readers told us by your direct comments and online sharing – that you love our coverage of Street Art festivals: 8 of the top 15 postings in ’15 were about them.

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The rest of the most popular stories can be described as being about powerful personalities and consequential work on the street that is not simply visually impactful but is backed by a story that runs deeper.

Following are your top 15 postings from the year on BSA and our articles on The Huffington Post along with an excerpt from the original posting.

 


NO. 15

 A Mexican Mural ‘Manifesto,’ Blackened Flags And Censorship (March 04 2015)

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Erica il Cane (photo © Fifty24Mex)

“Striking and massive murals by international street artists have been populating the walls of Mexico City for the last five years thanks to the emergence of a global Street Art scene, a rise in mural festivals, and the country’s tradition of institutional support for murals that further a socio-political mission. There hasn’t been much of the latter lately, however, and it is doubtful that a new politically charged mural campaign underway in certain central neighborhoods is likely to receive tax dollars for the paint and ladders.

Without sighting a specific ill to address, the new mural initiative named “Manifesto” is challenging a select group of local and international street artists to express their opinions on weighty and topical matters through murals, “using art as a social tool to propose, reflect and inform.” Among possible topics that might be addressed, the manifesto for “Manifesto” says, are increasing poverty, glorified materialism, the exhausting of natural resources, a fraying social web, and a dysfunctional justice system.”

More…


NO. 14

Malik and ‘Note’ Bring 17 Street Artists To A Swiss Prison (November 04, 2015)

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(photo © Malik)

“Initiated by Aarau-based graffiti/street/fine artist Malik in May of 2012, the project eventually corralled 17 street artists, all but one from Switzerland, to enter the confines of the new high security Lenzburg Prison to paint murals on exterior walls, courtyards, hallways, and common areas.

‘I was looking for a new challenge and a new and exciting project where I could show my art,’ says Malik and while the 18 month project originated with his vision of getting a nice wall for himself, quickly the project grew far beyond his expectations to become an educational, sociological meditation on the penal system, the appropriate role of art within it, and our collective humanity.”

 More…

 


NO. 13

The Coney Art Walls: First Three Completed and Summer Begins  (May 27, 2015)

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Kave (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“Instead of being hunted down for catching a tag or bubble-lettered throw-up, a couple dozen graffiti/street art painters are invited to hit up Coney Island this summer — and since we’ve just marked the unofficial first weekend of summer in New York — we’re bringing you the first three freshly completed pieces.

Part of “Coney Art Walls”, the muralists began taking the train out to this seaside paved paradise that is re-inventing itself once again, this time courtesy of art curator Jeffrey Deitch.”

More…


NO. 12

50 Years From Selma, Jetsonorama and Equality in Brooklyn  (June 27, 2015)

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Jetsonorama (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“From Selma to Ferguson, Birmingham to Charleston, Jimmie Lee Jackson to Michael Brown, Street Artist Jetsonorama is crossing the country from Arizona to New York and a half-century of America’s struggle with our legacy of racism and injustice.

As marches have continued across the country in cities like Ferguson, Oakland, Baltimore, New York, Dallas and Cleveland in the past year addressing issues such as police brutality and racism, the south is taking down confederate flags on state houses and the US is mourning another mass shooting.

Now as Americans everywhere are pulling out and waving the stars and stripes to celebrate freedom, this new powerful installation on a Brooklyn wall reminds us of what New York poet Emma Lazarus said, ‘Until we are all free, we are none of us free.’ ”

More…


NO. 11

Gender, Caste, And Crochet: OLEK Transforms A Shelter In Delhi  (March 25, 2015)

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Olek (photo © Street Art India)

” ‘It felt like I gave a birth to an oversize baby without any pain killers. I had to pull the black magic to make it happen. Physically and emotionally drained. Was it worth it? Absolutely YES,’ she types onto her Facebook page to let friends and fans know that she has finished the seven-day marathon of crocheting and directing a full team of volunteers and St+Art Delhi organizers. Triumphant, she stands atop the woman’s shelter, a one story structure of corrugated metal and concrete 40-feet long and 8-feet high, with a fist in the air, a symbol of celebration as well as a show of solidarity with the sisterhood of those who helped her make it and those will seek refuge here when other options have been exhausted.”

 More…

 


NO. 10

A Tidal Wave of Lodz Reborn: ‘Lodz Murals’ Distinguishes a Polish City (October 28, 2015)

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Alexis Diaz (photo © Maciej Stempij)

“Now I don’t want to create any new festival, any new brand — just want to keep the name as simple as possible,” he says of Lodz Murals, an ongoing program that functions year round rather than focusing specifically on a short-term festival. With all responsibilities for organizing, promoting, and working with city and private business under one roof, Michał says that his vision is to create the same sort of iconic image of Lodz with murals as Paris with the Eiffel Tower.

“I would like that people on the global scale would think of Lodz as a city with exceptional public art,” he says grandly while acknowledging that public art shines in many other cities as well. “When you are thinking about public art, one of the first places that you will see in your mind’s eye is Lodz. Of course, comparing the mural project to the one of the most important “pearls” of modern architecture is pure overstatement, but I would like to create this type of mechanism, this type of association.”

 More…


NO. 9

WALL\THERAPY 2015: Surrealism and the Fantastic (July 29, 2015)

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Never Crew (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“We don’t know for sure if it was our current funhouse mirror atmosphere that drove the Wall\Therapy festival in Rochester, NY to choose this years’ themes. It may simply be a way of organizing artists whose work reflects these notions back to us and to illuminate one specific growing trend in street culture and murals.

Surely Magritte, Dali and Ernst would be very pleased by the uptick of modern surrealists and practitioners of the bizarre, fantastical, and dream-like in galleries, in the public sphere, and throughout popular culture in recent years.”

More…


NO. 8

NUART 2015 Roundup: A Laboratory on the Street (September 12, 2015)

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Ella & Pitr (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“As we mark the halfway point of this decade and see the institutional discussions of Street Art taking form while academics try to place it in the canon of art-making and decide upon the nature of its impact, they do it with the knowledge that gallery shows, museum exhibitions, high-profile auctions, individual collecting, lifestyle marketers, and public festivals of many configurations and aspirations are already embracing its relevance. No one can possibly gauge this story in all of its complexity but some will capture its spirit. Being on the street helps.

One way to get a pulse on the present is to attend shows like Nuart and witness the diverse stratagems that artists are using to engage their audiences and judge if they are successful at realizing their intentions. With a deliberately mixed bag of thinkers, feelers, documentors, aesthetes, and pranksters culled together for your edification, this show stokes the discussions.”

More…


NO. 7

Coney Art Walls: 30 Reasons to Go to Coney Island This Summer  (June 24, 2015)

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Daze (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The gates are open to the new public/private art project called “Coney Art Walls,” and today, you can have a look at all 30 or so of the new pieces by a respectable range of artists spanning four decades and a helluva lot of New York street culture history. We’ve been lucky to see a lot of the action as it happened over the last five weeks and the range is impressive. These are not casual, incidental choices of players lacking serious resumes or street/gallery cred, but the average observer or unknowing critic may not recognize it.”

More…


NO. 6

Barcelona: “Open Walls” Mural Festival and Conference 2015 (November 11, 2015)

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RocBlackBlock (photo © Fernando Alcalá Losa)

“Barcelona was known as a city at the epicenter of a bustling lively organic street art scene in the mid 2000s. Today that has greatly been cracked down upon by authorities, but the Spanish city now boasts a mural festival called Open Walls, which celebrated its third edition last month with public works spanning a great number of influences and styles. Of course there is still plenty of autonomous, non-comissioned street art to be seen as well.”

 More…


NO. 5

Basquiat’s Rarely Seen Notebooks Open At The Brooklyn Museum (April 01, 2015)

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Basquiat (photo © Jaime Rojo)

In ‘Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks,’ now running at the Brooklyn Museum until August 23, the genius of his fragmenting logic is revealed as a direct relationship between his private journals and his prolific and personally published aerosol missives on the streets of Manhattan’s Soho and Lower East Side neighborhoods in the late 1970s and 1980s.

These notebooks were for capturing ideas and concepts, preparing them, transmuting them, revising them, pounding them into refrains. In the same way his text (and glyphic) pieces on the street were not necessarily finished products each time; imparted on the run and often in haste, these unpolished missives didn’t require such preciousness.”

 More…


NO. 4

Borås ‘No Limit’ 2015: Graffiti Tags, Murals, Greco-Roman Antiquities (September 17, 2015)

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Pichi & Avo (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“This is No Limit, the second installation of murals done primarily by street artists in Borås, a pristine and pleasant city about 45 minutes east of Gothenberg. With the leadership of artist Shai Dahan and organizers Stina Hallhagen and Anders Khil the local tourism office works year round to promote this festival and the quality of the pieces are top notch due to the careful choices of international big names and up-and-comers.

In addition to this diversity, the scale is varied with massive walls like those by the Chilean Inti and Poland’s Robert Proch, and more personal-sized installations in surprise locations around town by American illustration artist David Zinn and New Jersey’s sculptural stencilist Joe Iurato.”

More…


NO. 3

Street Art Sancocho: ArteSano Project Brings Dominican Flavor  (January 08, 2015)

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Mario Ramirez (photo © Tots Films)

It could be the name influencing our perception, but in one way or another it looks like these artists are chosen for their down-to-earth hand hewn approach. Sometimes decorative, sometimes storytelling, there are familiar themes and motifs that play well to their local audience as well as the virtual gawker.

Even with two dozen artists, it isn’t bloated: no logos or product tie-ins or DJs or high flying scissor lifts scaling massive multi-story walls with abstract surrealism, hyper photo-realism or dark pop human/animal/robot hybrids here – yet. Well, we take that back on the surrealism score; Pixel Pancho is here with a brood of chickens bobbing their industrial mesh necks atop fired tile bodices, hunting and pecking their way toward the beach, and Miami artist duo 2alas & Hox created a portrait of a boy with a partial mask overlay that calls to mind cyborgs (and Sten & Lex). But here in the loungey bare-foot tropical DR coastal area, even Pixel Pancho mutes the hues toward sun-bleached pastels, more easily complimenting their surroundings.”

 More…


NO. 2

Renaissance Masters, Keith Haring and Ninja Turtles in Brooklyn Streets (July 15, 2015)

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Owen Dippie. (photos © Jaime Rojo)

And so it made sense last week when Dippie skillfully merged imagery spanning five centuries, two continents, and two distinctly different art movements. Call it a measured miracle, a ratherish revelation that Dippie completed a deftly realized mashup of Raphael and Keith Haring, with the Madonna del Granduca holding Haring’s icon-symbol that is variously referred to as ‘Radiant Baby,’ ‘Radiant Child,’ and ‘Radiant Christ.’ ”

More…

 


NO. 1

YZ and Her ‘Amazone’ Warrior Women On Senegalese Walls (January 14, 2015)

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YZ (photo © YZ Yseult)

“French Street Artist YZ Yseult has begun her own campaign to pay tribute to the fierce female fighters of the 19th Century West African country of Dahomey, who are more commonly referred to as Amazons. A startling narrative of female power not often heard today for some, but as YZ is researching her own history as a descendent from slaves, her portraits reflect a personal impetus to tell these stories with a new force. She has named this series of strong warriors on the street ‘Amazone’.”

More…

 

 

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A Mexican Mural “Manifesto”, Blackened Flag Colors, and Censorship

A Mexican Mural “Manifesto”, Blackened Flag Colors, and Censorship

Striking and massive murals have been populating walls in Mexico City by international Street Artists in the last five years thanks to the emergence of a global Street Art scene, a rise in mural festivals, and the country’s heritage and tradition of institutional support for murals that further a socio-political mission. There hasn’t been much of the latter lately, however, and it is doubtful that a new politically charged mural campaign underway in certain central neighborhoods is likely to receive tax dollars for the paint and ladders.

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Erica Il Cane. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo courtesy © Fifty24MX )

Without sighting a specific ill to address, the new mural initiative named “Manifesto” is challenging a select group of local and international Street Artists to express their opinions on weighty and topical matters through murals, “using art as a social tool to propose, reflect and inform.” Among possible topics that might be addressed, the manifesto for “Manifesto” says, are increasing poverty, glorified materialism, the exhausting of natural resources, a fraying social web, and a dysfunctional justice system.

At the heart of the matter of course is the still turbulent national discussion surrounding the series of violent events last September that resulted in the disappearance of 43 students in the state of Guerrero, igniting a public spectacle of accusations, arrests, outrage and fear with each new gut-wrenching revelation searing the senses of Mexicans at all levels of society six months later.

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Erica Il Cane. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo courtesy © Fifty24MX )

“This situation exposed a deep crisis in the power structures that has shaken opinions worldwide and has created a movement within our society where people are speaking out,” says Emilio Ocampo from FIFTY24MX, a gallery that shows the work of the artists and is securing walls in neighborhoods of Roma, Juárez, San Miguel Chapultepec, Centro Histórico, and Peralvillo.

Based on the response to the mural by Italian Street Artist EricaIlcane, however, “Manifesto” may be running into resistance against certain artistic speech, and censorship has suddenly appeared . The ribbon around the neck of a cymbal-banging monkey originally contained the colors of the Mexican flag but has now been painted black. The monkey was overlooking a street in a part of town central to political marches, and Ocampo says it “is always a very ‘sensitive’ part of the city.”

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Erica Il Cane. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo courtesy © Fifty24MX )

So, he says, “The owners were a little bit scared about the ribbon around the monkey.” For those living outside of Mexico, no particular association may be made from the green, white, and red bands hanging around the monkey’s neck, but here it has meaning.

“It seemed to him (the wall owner) as a direct reference to the presidential ribbon,” says Liliana Carpinteyro, Co-Director of the gallery with Arturo Mizrahi about the significance of the “banda presidencial”. Many discussions took place between all parties and “In the end the artist agreed to change it,” she says.

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Erica Il Cane. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo courtesy © Fifty24MX )

“You have to consider that this piece is located in the main downtown avenue where all the protesters pass through in their way to the Zócalo, where the “Palacio Nacional”, the national government headquarters, is located,” explains Carpinteyro.

Because many people were watching the creation of the wall and sharing images of it across their devices, the blackout sparked a lively reaction that included condemnation for cowardice. “This situation created a social media reaction, people were irritated and a freedom of speech dialogue happened,” says Carpinteyro, commenting on the outcry.

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Erica Il Cane. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

Unable to sway the building owner, the organizers were glad they could keep the monkey none-the-less. Ocampo sees the conversations and “the haters” as a positive development because the art and its censorship sparked just the kind of reaction people should be having right now.

“They wanted us to change the colors to black. But you know what? We like that censorship, and the reactions it produced. That also means that the message bothered someone. We love both images: with the tricolored ribbon and now with black.”

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Erica Il Cane painting it black. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

No stranger to controversy, the largely anonymous Italian BLU has similarly featured the banded colors of the Mexican flag in his mural but with bluntly acidic criticism – with the green appearing as dollars, the white as lines of cocaine, and the red a dripping liquid similar to blood. Framing the flag are military figures standing guard.

You may recall the coffins draped with dollars in the BLU mural that was censored at LA MoCA in 2011 during the “Art in the Streets” exhibition  – but so far this new one has not merited the same response.

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Blu. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

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Blu. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo courtesy © Fifty24MX )

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Blu. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

Just finishing her wall for “Manifesto” is the Colombian Street Artist Bastardilla, who uses a more subdued palette to depict cherubic writers with pencils for arrows afloat on an open text signed “Vivos Los Queremos”, circled by alligators in choppy waters.

Meanwhile Erica Il Cane has just completed his second mural yesterday; much less invective, but terrorizing none-the-less in its metaphorical circumstance. A snaggle-toothed and spotted member of the leopard family lowers his snapping smile upon five rabbits standing on hind legs as if to great him. One bunny even appears to offer a carrot. Another of los conejos is wearing an arm-band with the number “43”.

Ocampo says it is a little difficult to get new walls right now, but the organizers are not giving up. “Obviously the project will not be cancelled but we are still trying to get those permissions.”

“We think this incident is a reflection of the self-censorship that we decide to live in,” says Carpinteyro, “perhaps a result of living in a political system that for years has oppressed the weakest. But its also evidence that art has the capability to move people.”

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Bastardilla. Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

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Bastardilla.  Process shot. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

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Bastardilla.  Detail. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

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Bastardilla. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

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Erica Il Cane. MANIFESTO. Mexico City. February 2015. (photo © Nasser Malek Hernández)

“Manifesto” will include new works from BLU (Italy), Saner (Mexico), Swoon (US), Ericailcane (Italy), Franco JAZ Fasoli (Argentina), Curiot (Mexico), Bastardilla (Colombia), Ciler (Mexico), and Vena2 (Mexico).

Our very special thanks to Emilio Ocampo of FIFTY24MX Gallery @fifty24mx for his assistance with this article and to Nasser Malek Hernández @nssr21 for sharing his photos exclusively with BSA readers.

 

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This article is also published on The Huffington Post.

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BSA Images Of The Week: 12.14.14

BSA Images Of The Week: 12.14.14

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The year is winding down people, and the hits just keep on coming!

Bankers are ruling us and setting us up for their next crashing of the economy, mistletoe-carrying drones are a good idea gone wrong, and thousands continue to protest injustice toward black and brown people in Washington DC and Washington Square. In happier news: – just one photo we posted this week on Instagram – LMNOPI’s painting of a small boy protester – united the boy’s mother with the artist and us via social media, which was kind of magical. See a version of the image below. The city is also crammed with tourists (Hi Aunt Bobbie and Uncle Roy! Hi Kate and William!), drunken Santa’s are somewhat less cranky this year, and the Dyker Heights neighborhood in Brooklyn is already encrusted with Christmas lights.

Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring $howta, Crummy Gummy, Dhear, Don John, Eelco Virus, LMNOPI, London Kaye, Mistakoy, Mr. Oneteas, Peter Van Flores, Rocko, Tracy168, WERC, and ZIMAD.

Top Image >> A Mr. OneTeas tribute to Keith Haring appeared in Soho. Earlier in the week an “I Can’t Breath” piece by the artist appeared on the street in Williamsburg but was torn down before we could get to it. Things happen fast sometimes with this ephemeral form of speech, and some pieces (like anything too cutesy or anything with male nudity) come down fast. The artists Instagram has a version of the large wheatpaste. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Mr. OneTeas (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Zimad just finished this tribute to Basquiat for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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A Tracey 168 re-resurgence appeared suddenly for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Mistakoy (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Crummy Gummy in Miami. (photo © Crummy Gummy)

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LMNOPI (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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London Kaye getting in the spirit of the season and sharing it on the streets. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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London Kaye (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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London Kaye (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Eelco Virus with Rocko for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Eelco Virus. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Artist Unknown (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Don John at work for Urban Xchange: Crossing Over in Penang, Malaysia. (photo © Nikko Tan)

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Don John. Urban Xchange: Crossing Over. Penang, Malaysia. (photo © Nikko Tan)

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Peter Van Flores in Miami. (photo © Crummy Gummy)

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WERC (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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$howta (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Dhear in Mexico City for MUJAM. (photo © Wladimir Sanchez)

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Untitled (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

 

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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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BSA Film Friday 09.05.14 – Tonight LIVE at NUART 2014

BSA Film Friday 09.05.14 – Tonight LIVE at NUART 2014

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

Now screening :

1. Swoon and Submerged Motherlands
2. Nuart PLUS features BSA FILM FRIDAY LIVE
3. John Fekner: NUART 2014 Teaser Video
4. ETAM CRU: NUART 2014 Teaser Video
5. DOT DOT DOT: NUART 2014 Teaser Video
6. ENTES Y PESIMO in Mexico City

BSA Special Feature: Swoon and Submerged Motherlands

This summer ended with the closing of Swoon’s “Submerged Motherlands” at the Brooklyn Museum; a nine month process that began for us by Jaime visiting her in studio during the cold January days when she began building much of the work that would be installed for the April opening. It has been a genuine pleasure to be associated with this show in some small way, including interviewing Swoon on stage at the museum, writing about the show as it opened, and documenting it. An integrated approach to life, biography, and the conversation on the street, Swoon’s work continues to inspire many others, including us, and we were pleased to see this thoughtful look some of the background of this artist and her work by the folks at The New York Times.

Tonight at Nuart 2014 – Nuart PLUS features BSA FILM FRIDAY LIVE

For all the Norwegian fans of BSA Film Friday and Street Art in general,  join us tonight in a theater in downtown Stavanger to see about 18 of our favorites short video pieces from the last year. Explorers, Experimenters, and Anti-Heroes – today’s global Street Art scene is visually rich and full of life! Can’t wait to meet you!

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John Fekner: NUART 2014 Teaser Video

 

ETAM CRU: NUART 2014 Teaser Video

 

DOT DOT DOT: NUART 2014 Teaser Video

 

ENTES Y PESIMO IN MEXICO CITY

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BSA FILM FRIDAY: 04.18.14

BSA FILM FRIDAY: 04.18.14

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

A sort of quiet day for much of Latin America today as it is Good Friday and many observe it, also many are reflecting on the passing of writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez yesterday. Colombia has declared three days of national mourning for this literary giant; Truly he was a storyteller globally known and celebrated. His magical realism was filled with humor and metaphor, taking it just one step further.

Muralists and painters have relied upon this third eye to transcend the mere mundanity of daily existence as well, and we meditate today on the gifts of creativity that everyone can access to discover at least a little magic in life. Each one of these videos in some way make us think of Garcia Marquez and his legacy to us as a master storyteller.

Now screening :

1. David De La Mano at Memorie Urbane
2. Vero Rivera On a Doorway in Santurce
3. Vexta: Life / Death / Life in Mexico City

BSA Special Feature: David De La Mano at Memorie Urbane

Shot by The Blind Eye Factory, this small personal interlude is the first of two videos showing the small brush painting style of muralists. David De La Mano is creating here an interconnected world of fantasy with silhouettes at the Memorie Urbane Festival currently happening in Gaeta, Italy.

 

Vero Rivera On a Doorway in Santurce

Tost Films celebrates their first year with this six day installation with one artist, Vero Rivera and one small brush on one portal. Where it leads we do not know.

 

Vexta: Life / Death / Life

In a country known for its love of magic realism, and the home of Gabriel Garcia Marquez for three decades, Vexta contemplates the cycle of life and death and life in Mexico City.

 

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BSA Film Friday: 04.11.14

BSA Film Friday: 04.11.14

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

Now screening :

1. URBAN ART 2014 on Auction
2. Building Detroit – Revok, Nekst, Pose
3. Sheryo and Yok in Indonesia
4. Coachella Walls: Date Farmers by Medvin Sobio
5. Spaik and Libre. Mexico City 2014

BSA Special Feature: URBAN ART 2014 on Auction with Artcuriel

A film by Jérémy Jaoui

This is what it looks like now; a powerful visual documentation and summary of one plainly commercial aspect of this moment in the evolution of graffiti art/ Street Art/ urban art – and its collectability with a growing global artworld fan base. The video follows Artcuriel and it’s personable auctioneer Arnaud Oliveux as the crowd gathers and clinks glasses, listens to speeches, views live art-making and inspects a collection of fine art created by graffiti and Street Artists which will soon be auctioned.

As one observer notes while thumbing through the show catalog “Urban Art is becoming something real!” Now the vulgar rap lyrics that describe sexual acts to a beat which accompanied the visuals of the artists in the gallery are replaced with rarefied classical strings and no percussion when we enter the auction room where commerce takes place.

Brooklyn-Street-Art-Screenshot-Artcuriel-auction-2014-740Excitement in the packed house is palpable and the auctioneer is the entertaining and electrified ringmaster, with poised assistants tensely perched on the telephone with international bidders.

“With an artist like LUDO, Arnauld is being very avant-garde,” says a knowledgeable admirer while we see the piece reach a record price to applause and pieces are placed on the mantel by men in white gloves. “Urban Art is now happening as we wanted it to,” says Monsieur Oliveux to us from his desk.

Well edited and skillfully presented, the film by Jaoui Jérémy gives you a rare glimpse into a world far removed from the street yet inextricably tied to it – where one time vandals become art stars, collectible artists, performers and celebrity endorsers.  It’s your call whether it is a celebration or an indictment, and perspectives will vary according to where you sit, but here the elements are all on parade before your eyes and presented in a passionate way.

 

Building Detroit – Revok, Nekst, Pose

The graffiti and Street Art scene in abandoned Detroit is “thriving like I don’t think we’ve seen in the US for quite some time,” observes artist Pose, one of the few writers/artists who is straddling the street and commercial gallery world. “When you leave something and don’t care about it, we come here.” It’s a rallying cry for painters, a cautionary statement for authorities that encapsulates one of the primary dynamics of the graffiti/street art/public art scene.

But then Pose offers an additional sentiment that gets missed in these often simplified arguments. “We care about it, we’ll paint it all day.”

From MOCA in LA to MOCAD here, where both Revok and Pose have created large scale works, the institutional recognition of the contribution of the art form is remarkable. Simultaneously the freewill act of it a few blocks away from the museum has greater implications from a legal aspect.

Oh no! Complexity to contemplate.

 

Sheryo and Yok in Indonesia

“Sheryo and The Yok go to Indonesia to learn batik and sculpture” says their description but we think they may already know a thing or two about both. Here they are line illustrating with hot wax, adding a third dimension in clay to characters with phallus noses, and hitting up random walls throughout the city and on the beach with aerosol. Like any good guests, they make sure to credit their hosts here, which is real nice.  Oh yes, and there’s a gallery show at Turner Gallery in Purth March 21 – mentioned at the very end.

 

Coachella Walls: Date Farmers by Medvin Sobio

Hey man, ¿Qué haces? For this Coachella street-art-related event the dude Medvin Sobio is setting the scene again with  unscripted social outtakes and interactions are positioned as the main story – and he is framing it with this jukebox music. Yes, this is where The Eagles are national treasures, Marvin Gaye is a nice reminder of a time when singing about the environment could still get airplay, and MJ is always a party starter. Errrbuddy get up!

Spaik and Libre. Mexico City 2014

Part of a commercial gig for a traveling corporate electronic dance music festival, Spaik and Libre knock out a colorful wall while participants pile onto the big lot in DF for the multi-screen festivities.

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Spaik and Libre Collabo Mural in Mexico City

Spaik and Libre Collabo Mural in Mexico City

A collaboration between two Gen Y Mexican muralists went up this month for college age festival goers at an electronic dance event in Mexico City that features multiple DJs, carnival rides, laser light shows, and neon accessories. Here are some shots of the massive wall by Spaik and Libre and you can see the video at the end for more information.

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Click on this full length image above to see larger.

Spaik and Libre collaboration in Mexico City (photo © Jose Hernandez)

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Spaik and Libre collaboration in Mexico City. Detail. (photo © Jose Hernandez)

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Spaik and Libre collaboration in Mexico City. Detail. (photo © Jose Hernandez)

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Spaik and Libre collaboration in Mexico City. Detail. (photo © Jose Hernandez)

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Spaik and Libre collaboration in Mexico City. Detail. (photo © Jose Hernandez)

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Spaik and Libre collaboration in Mexico City. Detail. (photo © Jose Hernandez)

 

 

 

 

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A Saturday Mural in Mexico City with Tiburon 704, Navajas, and Shente

A Saturday Mural in Mexico City with Tiburon 704, Navajas, and Shente

A ROA/SEGO Colab is Defaced and Replaced (VIDEO)

“It’s not illegal graffiti, it’s a contemporary mural,” says a passerby who is watching the new collaboration by Tiburon 7ö4, Navajas, and Shente in Mexico City.  The Antique Toy Museum Mexico (MUJAM) and its director Roberto Shimizu decided it was time to refresh this wall after another collaboration by ROA and SEGO was finally tagged after running for two years.

I respect the streets language and the cycle of the ephemeral artworks,” says Shimizu as he traces the relatively long life of the Dutch/Mexican mural that began the Mural Mujam project and in his estimation was “one of the most emblematic walls in Mexico City.  That’s why I wanted to make something special to cover this historic tagged mural.”

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The original ROA vs SEGO mural shown here after it was tagged. (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

The new collaboration is all Mexican, drawn from three far spread cities in the country (Mexico City, Puerto Vallarta, and Tijuana) and stylistically it is equally diverse. In these images and the video below you see the Tiburon using a more traditional mural technique using brushes, vinyl and spray cans, Navajas skewing toward a monochrome realism, and Shente bringing some old school influences from Tijuana´s graffitti scene.

The gathering of different kinds of people in public space may be one of the overlooked qualities invariably arises with the appearance of cans, ladders and artists on your block on a Saturday morning. Here you get to meet people, trade opinions, learn new techniques of painting, see the original sketches, and hear how the artist is thinking about their progress.  “What we enjoyed the most with this mural was we really had a great time as a group of friends, painting over a normal weekend and having a good time just hanging out with our people,” says Shimizu.

Special thanks to Omar Villa and Nasser Malek for sharing photos and timelapses of the new mural with BSA readers, and thank you to Daniel Sroor for making the video capturing the sense of community that surrounded the process.

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

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Tiburon / 7ö4 . Navajas . Shente (photo © courtesy of Roberto Shimizu/MUJAM)

 

 

 

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Overunder and “Joins” Remixing Mexico on Walls in the Capital

Street Artist Overunder has discovered the warmth of Mexican people and the character of the painting, sculpture and everyday architecture of Mexico City and he shares with us his first impressions on the street making art with his friend Joins. One of the new magicians in the current Street Art movement, it is no surprise that Overunder easily assimilates and reinterprets this culture characterized by its respect for tradition, for folk art, and for a love of magic realism.

“Mexico city is still amazing with each new day,” he enthuses while recounting his study of the cultural touchstones and icons when making selections of subject matter. “So far my trip has consisted of embedded anthropology that comes with some of the most unique and beautiful experiences had from painting here.”

 

Overunder. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

He says he had the goal of exploring institutions, parks and galleries but usually found that meeting people was a great way to learn and to get walls. “The mentality is beautiful here,” he says of the new friends with whom he’s had dinners and caguama (slang for 40 oz. sized beer) and the families with whom he has gotten to hang out with. “I’ve had house after house offered up as an experimental canvas – which seems unheard of back in the states,” he says in a sort of befuddled amusement. “Mi casa es su casa y mi pintura es su pintura.”

As you look at the images of new pieces Overunder has been creating, fans of his work will notice some are distinctly in the style and family of references that he typically works in. Others, like the swinging strands of the local bougainvillas and prickly pear fully mimic his flying bird/plane line tag that hit many a city wall over the last few years; instead of being accompanied by text or passages, the poetry is in the motion of the line as blossoms and leaves wend their way along the wall. “And with the amazing backdrop of these houses it’s unnecessary to paint my usual architectural features because they already have remarkable features,” he explains, “They are Duchampian readymades.”

Overunder. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

It’s sort of unusual to see Overunder delving into work that may be considered more decorative, but as usual with this thinking artist, the intellectual machinations are many. “The paintings of flora and fauna are a departure but the work fell into place naturally,” he says as he recounts his process for selection. “I started using the imagery as a way to connect and speak the native tongue visually. I already feel like a foreigner when I attempt to speak Spanish and the idea of painting foreign imagery feels wrong. So reintroducing a familiar and indigenous sight in an unorthodox way felt natural.”

His wall work on this trip also includes more localized influences, as the Street Artist was inspired by the Mexican mural tradition as well 20th century sculptors like Mexican Luis Ortiz Monasterio and currently active Columbian Fernando Botero, all with the considered weight of the Mayans and Aztecs forming the figures. Naturally Overunder takes his own approach to these more formal masters, remixing and matching symbols and meanings with the ease of any modern digital denizen, weaving his own biography to provide structure.

Overunder. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

Speaking about the largest piece featuring the cowboy flanked by two figures, Overunder tells us that it is a reinterpretation of the figures flanking the center figure in ‘Monumento a la Madre’ by Monasterio. “I came across the statues while exploring the San Rafael neighborhood and I was enamored by their bulky Botero-like look.”

Of the 1949 figures that separates San Rafael from Colonia Cuauhtémoc, he says, “Secondly and even more so, I’ve never seen a statue that was performing an action while seeming to be completely distracted by something else going on in their periphery. So when my friend Joins started painting the faceless vaquero in the center I thought it was a perfect opportunity to remix these images with their focus on his cowboy.”

Overunder collaboration with Joins. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

But why not leave the central figure as a tribute to motherhood, as the original? The answer lies in the biographies of the two Street Artists. “The gender shift lends itself to more of a monument to Father, which seems very suiting since I lost my father several years ago and Joins has just met his father after 33 years.

Joins at work on his collaboration with Overunder. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

In a way typical for the experimenting and adventuring Street Artist traveling abroad, much of the work is made of spur of the moment inspiration, and functions as much as sketch as finished piece; part public, part diary entry. Finally, the “Cauce Ciudano” mural is another collaboration between Overunder and Joins that expresses more of their personal styles. Joins has the feather page of the book while Overunder produces one of his portraits that features patterning across the countenance. Like the lines that trace the our faces as time progresses, these include impressions of his time visiting what he regards a country at once proud in tradition and somewhat magical in imagination.

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Overunder . Joins. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . Joins. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . Joins. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

“The smiley face flower wall was a quick painting I made in exchange for a dinner date from a wonderful grandmother” OU

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Overunder. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Little bull plays futbol with big bull. Joins. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . Joins. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . Joins. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . Joins. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . Joins. Detail. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder . A portrait of the Mother of the house. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

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Overunder. Mexico City. July 2013. (photo © Overunder)

A shout out to Gonzalo of Mamutt Creatividad, who helped line up the large wall and the Cauce Ciudadano wall. Check him out on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MamuttCreatividad

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Please note: All content including images and text are © BrooklynStreetArt.com, unless otherwise noted. We like sharing BSA content for non-commercial purposes as long as you credit the photographer(s) and BSA, include a link to the original article URL and do not remove the photographer’s name from the .jpg file. Otherwise, please refrain from re-posting. Thanks!

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Mexican Street Artists Bring Kids Up the Ladder

Street Art as an Educational Instrument for Community

This spring a handful of some of Mexico’s top Street Art talent gave local youth a chance to envision themselves as artists. SEGO, SIAMÉS, 704, MINOS and NEWS gave their time and talent to conduct workshops and show how to create paintings and wall murals for roughly 300 kids who took part in the project headed by Roberto Shimizu K of the Antique Toy Museum Mexico (MUJAM).

Minos work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

“The main purpose of this community work is to encourage young talent and to give them tools for success,” says Shimizu of the joint program with Oroboro and Fundación Isitia, a foundation that works with families in need and youth at risk. “Hopefully we can nurture and inspire them to see different possibilities to being successful in their lives,” he says, “When they get to work with other talented Mexican artists they can envision their own path to the future as something positive.”

Minos work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

The Mitikah project included five big walls and a lot of paint and preparation. By working alongside the artists the kids began to understand some of the challenges and difficulties that an artist faces, as well as what it takes to have commitment to a project. In the daily exchanges and sharing of responsibilities and learning the craft, Shimizu says they hope to engender a proactive and positive mentality for participants to take to their families and the greater community.

BSA is very happy to be able to share these images of the project with our readers.

Minos. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Siamés. Work in Progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Siamés at work. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Siamés. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Siamés. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Sego. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Sego. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

Sego. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

News. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

News. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

News. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

704. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

704. Detail. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

704. Work in progress. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

704. Mitikah Project with The Museum of Antique Toy of Mexico City (MUJAM). Mexico City. (photo © MUJAM)

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