All posts tagged: OWNS

MSK Crew and the 2013 Summer Family Reunion in Brooklyn

MSK Crew and the 2013 Summer Family Reunion in Brooklyn

Before we lose the warmth of the sun we wanted to reflect on one of the largest graffiti shows curated under one theme that was mounted this summer right on the streets of Brooklyn by members of the long-running graffiti crew known as Mad Society Kings, or MSK. It’s a Summer tradition for many families to convene at a selected location to enjoy a familial get-together and as the writers and painters of MSK consider themselves a very tight family spanning a few generations, they, like many American families, decided to have their own Family Reunion.

Naturally there were lawn chairs, aerosol cans, and razor wire.


FASR MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Gathering across three sprawling blocks in Bushwick just ahead of the July 4th holiday and while the Houston Wall in Manhattan was poised for takeover by members Pose and Revok, all the MSK uncles and aunts and cousins gathered before corrugated metal and cinder block walls in the still-industrial neighborhood to create a pre-fireworks display of their own. Adding to the reunion feeling, many of the folks seemed to be from out of town and had traveled a distance so you really got the idea that pretty soon there would be a kickball game, a pig rotating on a spit, and grandma MSK wheeling by handing out colorful pinwheels on sticks to the kiddies.

What made this reunion so remarkable was not just the variety of styles on display but the unanimity of the theme; each piece was dedicated to their recently departed brother, the writer NEKST, who passed away in the winter months.  Graffiti culture and community murals have been intertwined for as long as anyone held a spray can, with lists of the departed sometimes on display in a neighborhood for years as memorial, so the outpouring of love and creativity on these walls really was at its best.


El Kamino MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)

We decided to wait until the dog days and the picnics were officially over to turn the spotlight on these walls and say goodbye to all the great memories of Summer 2013 on the streets of Brooklyn, and to give witness to the power of memories that we all have of people we’ve lost. These tributes are rendered in an explosion of color and styles – but all with the same idea, with the same name, with the same person in mind. Themed shows like this also allow the viewer to compare and contrast and better appreciate the more subtle and obvious differences in style, technique, and approach.

The results are a stellar sampler of some of the best graffiti writers working today on the streets.  Full of force, character, attitude, color, shape, dimension and craftsmanship, here is a selection by photographer Jaime Rojo for you to see. All of them are still up in Bushwick if you are out on a bright Saturday – they are just a short walk from the L train on the Morgan stop.



Cease MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


TRAV MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Omens MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Rime MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


REVOK MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


POSE MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Vizie MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Skrew MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


DMOTE MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


DMOTE MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Steel MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Owns MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


KC ONE MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Artist Unknown . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Navy8 MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Wane COD MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Artist Unknown . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Dabs & Myla MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)


MSK . NEKST (photo © Jaime Rojo)




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BSA Film Friday: 07.12.13


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

Now screening: Neighborhood Love in Brooklyn by Serringe, Isaac Cordal: The Family, and The Lurkers go to Bulgaria for Summer Fun.

BSA Special Feature:
Neighborhood Love in Brooklyn

A new film by Serringe that celebrates the magical mix of sun and aerosol and a group of artists/writers/graff dudes all getting up in the neighborhood. The flows are nice, the movements a little hypnotic, the soundtrack allows you to travel, the love is there. Fall in.


Isaac Cordal: The Family

Street Artist Issac Cordal has been installing his small cement sculptures in staged scenes ever since Spain began suffering the brunt of the global financial crisis and he saw his country as having been dragged into an an economic, environmental and socialized purgatory. This new gallery show installation caught on video imprisons the organizational man and the entrepreneurial exec alike in much the same way as animals in our factory farms, with similar lighting but more room.  A conceptualist by nature, his message is heavier than cinder blocks some times, yet you won’t deny the devastating effect that his installations can have on your psyche as the camera pans and you see the effects of socialization on a mass level, evocative of cubicled offices and prisons, and may even cause a viewer to question things. Till the next video.


The Lurkers go to Bulgaria for Summer Fun

A self-described “movement” that makes urban exploration a spectator tagging sport, Lurkers may be a small club of skinny London boys in their 20s who like to spraycation through tunnels and abandoned monuments with their model girlfriends, discovering the hidden pockets that time forgot. Or Lurkers may be a well-positioned semi-chaotic lifestyle brand that is accumulating original content to help move product once you are hooked. One can envision the anonymity that these hilarious cartoon heads allow also being a way to extend a franchise once these rascals get old or get bored and need to be replaced. Either way, some of the sequences in their newly begun video series are alternately mundane, raw, soaring, or smartly sly.

It’s so difficult these days when true counterculture is swallowed whole by lifestyle brands and you can’t tell the real thing from the Coca-cola intervention but this is sort of Vice meets Monty Python meets reality show meets Polo with aerosol cans. The touchstones of rebelliousness and tomfoolery appear in a cheerfully non-political context but just as we we start to think that, we learn about world history on this trip, don’t we kids?  What really is lurking beneath the surface? Stop worrying and start adventuring.



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