In honor of the 50th
Anniversary of the Stonewall Inn uprising in the West Village in Manhattan, we
are giving the spotlight this Sunday to the many artworks that have been
created by dozens of artists from all over the world in the city over the past
weeks. Some of them are commissioned works and others are illegally placed on
the streets, regardless of who made them or under whose sponsorship they were
created or if they were placed illegally the important thing is to realize that
the struggle for recognition, acceptance, and justice didn’t just happen
because somebody was willing to give that to us.
It happened because a lot of people before us dared to challenged the establishment and fought to change the cultural norms, the laws in the books and ultimately the perception from the society at large. People suffered unspeakable evil and pain at the hands of unmoved gatekeepers and power brokers. People died rather than living a lie. People took to the streets to point fingers at those who stood silent when many others were dying and were deemed untouchable.
People marched to vociferate and yelled the truth and were arrested and marked undesirable. Many brothers and sisters who were much more courageous than we’ll ever be, defied a system that was designed to fail them and condemn them. Restless souls confronted our political, business, media and religious leaders right in their front yards with the truth and never backed down.
So we must pay homage to
them. We have what we have because of them. We owe it to them and we need to
understand that it was because of their vision, intelligence and fearless
actions that the majority began to understand that without them and their help
we would never get equal treatment. Equal rights. Equal opportunities.
So yes let’s celebrate,
dance and sing together but let’s feel the pain of those who can’t join in on
the celebrations because today still they are on the margins, hiding in the
shadows, being cast out from their families and communities and even killed and
tortured. Let’s remember that the job isn’t done, indeed far from it. Many
countries still have in their laws harsh punishment for those that don’t
conform to their established norms. Let’s keep the fight on, the light on, the
courage on, the voices loud and the minds open. Happy Pride.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street (or boardwalk), this time featuring Aloha, Buff Monster, David Puck, Divine, Fox Fisher, Homo Riot, IronClad, Jason Naylor, Joe Caslin, JPO, Meres One, Nomad Clan, Ori Carino, Royce Bannon, Sam Kirk, SAMO, SeeTf, and Tatyana Fazlalizadeh.
From Tatyana about this piece: “Some of Us Did Not Die. We’re Still Here. – June Jordan, Black, bi-sexual, activist, poet and writer. .
Last fall I met with members of @griotcircle, a community of LGBTQ+ Black and brown elders for my residency with @nycchr. I got to speak with them about their lives and some things that came up were the challenges of being Black and gay in New York years ago, like having to travel in groups because queer folks would be attacked for walking alone. Or not being served at restaurants because they were also black. “
Two things come to mind simultaneously as we publish this collection of Street Art and graffiti. 1. All the Rainbow Flag waving means nothing if you are not willing to help protect the dignity of immigrants who are being dragged from their homes and thrown in jail-detention centers in the US, and 2. All white people are immigrants and descendants of immigrants.
We’ve all seen this movie before. Or our parents did. Or our grandparents did. You’re next, baby!
It was great to see/hear/feel Faile and Swizz Beats doing a quick summer dance party this week in Manhattan – flourescent madness ya’ll. Also, it was astounding to see so many graffiti heads and other notables at Beyond the Streets this week – It was a cultural event that blew our minds. Seriously, Corn Bread was actually selling t-shirts on a table at the entrance – and that started the litany. You can see our review published yesterday.
And finally, can we call a moratorium on rain for a few days? The grass and trees are green already.
So here’s our weekly interview with the street (or boardwalk), this time featuring AME 72, Bisco Smith, Emma Apicelli, Feminists in Struggle, IXNAY, Joe Caslin, Katsu, Part Time Artist, Royce Bannon, and Tonk Hawaii.
Ms. Moon made this installation using Legos with a message in Braille. The words in the message was taken from the script of the movie “Call Me By Your Name.”
You want a booth at Coney so you can play a Carney? Do it yourself!
Shout out to tireless creative New Yorker Kosbe and the Sticker Social Club who quickly set up shop in the Coney Art Walls compound with their carnival style game booth last month and have been entertaining passersby ever since. It wasn’t originally part of the formal Coney Art Walls show but the Street Artist/graff writer/art director/hustler/hard worker/Renaissance man got this sculptural installation up in a matter of days and the booth has been showing original artworks and playing games with curious art fans since then.
“We used found material sourced from the boardwalk and felt this reclaimed material was a good representation of Coney Island,” Kosbe says about the booth that is topped with a “Down the Clown” sign that they found in a refuse pile. Elsewhere in the show is signage that borrows from popular amusement vernacular by Stephen Powers. For Kosbe, its about the process as well. “It created a dialogue between us and several of the residents and employees of Luna Park and the neighborhood who actually contributed to the build out and came back later with a sense of excitement and pride at being a part of the art project.”
With handmade stickers and artworks by many friends and local NYC based artists who regularly get together to make art, the sense of collaboration with Sticker Social Club is always palpable. A tireless advocate for collaboration and participation, Kosbe is the driving force behind many of the clubs activities, meetings, installations.
This booth recalls Coney Island’s magical past, and “We also feel it relates to graffiti’s roots in making something out of whatever you can source on a bare minimum and utilizing materials from the street,” says the affable and energetic Kosbe. On opening day a number of people could be seen tossing beanbags and other projectiles while being goaded on by artists who sometimes gave out stickers or original drawings to winners. Curator of Coney Art Walls Jeffrey Deitch stopped by a few times and talked with the artists, happy to discover this collaborative team was willing to contribute so much to the exhibition.
Always sensitive to his environment, the artist didn’t want to encroach on the wall by artist Sam Vernon, who had placed her new work up as part of the formal show. “We lucked out in finding that ‘Down a Clown’ sign that we feel complimented and didn’t detract from Sam Vernon’s vision or color palette. We like how both pieces evoke imagery and a sense of the Coney boardwalk as if you are visually walking through it.”
Sticker Social Club:Sticker Social Club hosts art events and drawing meet-ups as a means for young, upcoming artists to gain exposure as well as meet and learn from other like minded artists. The club regularly hosts events including drink and draws featuring artwork and music from live bands and DJs. Artists include: Cosbe (or Kosbe), Abe Lincoln Jr., Fling, OneTooth, Alone, Royce Bannon, Baser, Buttsup, Chris RWK (Robots Will Kill), Crasty, Dano, Tony DePew, Doper Jones, Jos-L, Froot, Herm, Imamaker, Adam Lawrence, Mister Guh, Sameshit, Tako Venus, Tone Tank, Wish 194 and many more.
Happy New Year to All! Thank you for inspiring us to do our best and to those of you who continue to support our personal art project / cultural examination, we extend our gratitude more than ever.
Begun as an enthusiastic discovery of what was happening in a few neighborhoods in New York, we continued to expand our view into more cities around the world last year and into the history and future of the scene. We also aimed to provide you with a critical platform for examination of the street art/ graffiti / public art/ contemporary art continuum with interviews with artists, curators, collectors, organizers, observers and thinkers in the street, studio, gallery, and museum – trouble makers and taste makers alike.
In the end, it’s your observations and the conversations on the street that are most important. As we begin the year with over 300K fans, friends, and followers on social media platforms and 225 articles on the Huffington Post (thanks HuffPost team!), we feel like we get a valuable good survey of current opinions heading our way daily.
With in-depth interviews, investigative articles, opinion infused examinations, plain celebratory reverie, occasionally silly non-sequitors, and public appearances where we get to meet you, we get a good analytical look at an ever-evolving movement, glittery polish and warts and all.
As the new year begins we take a look back at the top stories chosen by BSA Readers in the last 12 months. Among them are two takeover pop-up shows in soon-to-be demolished buildings, a story about commercial abuse of artist copyrights and the effort to fight back, a street art community’s response to the sudden death of an activist street artist, a Street Art tourist trip, and a few inspirational women, men, and Mexican muralists. Even though we published at least once a day for the last 365 days, these are the most popular pieces, as chosen by you, Dear BSA Reader.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring 1up, Bishop203, Bradley Theodore, Cash4, Deekers, El Sol 25, Hiss Keeley, Kevin Cyr, King Amsterdam, Ludo, Mosco Clandestino, Not Art, ROA, Royce Bannon, Smells, Sweet Toof, Trap Art, and Zimer.
With studio apartments in Manhattan now hitting nearly 3K a month the closest thing most Milennials will ever get to a house party in Gotham will be snagging a VCR tape of the Kid ‘n Play danceoff movie at their parents stoop sale. Last week during the “polar vortex” cold freeze some lucky invitees did get access to a secret house party in a dilapidated building on the Lower East Side for 2 hours however. There wasn’t much heat, no DJ, and your flask of Jack Daniels substituted as the bar, but if you made it in you scored a free condensed Street Artist show that is as rare as a New Jack Swing hit these days.
A little more than 40 (mostly) Street Artists brought the four floor former tenement building to life one last time before it will be destroyed – and they did it almost entirely in secret over the course of a week. Just how secret this event was is debatable considering the multitude of blog posts and photos of it that appeared in the days following but in the Internet age, news about stuff like this goes viral no matter what.
All tolled, the varied collection of participants was a cross-section; a blurry screenshot of Street Artists on the New York scene along with a few graff writers, taggers, sticker slappers, painters, illustrators, aerosol experts, installationists, art school students, and visitors to the big city who happened to be around at the right time. Also, a couple of pyros.
While this sort of artist takeover of an abandoned house or building is increasingly occurring in bankrupt cities and neighborhoods in America and Europe where no one wants to live except the creative types, you don’t find this unruly and freewheeling expression much in the increasingly scrubbed and mall-like playground for the rich in Manhattan.
Similarly, producers of large Street Art/Urban Art events in global cities can deliver murals that make you salivate and on a scale that dwarfs this “event” thanks to corporate underwriters and shills for sneakers/sodas/urban-themed tampons these days, but few can truthfully rival the unpolished impromptu spirit of a semi-secret House Party jam session. For one week during installations and on opening night it was like the ghost of New York’s downtown 1970s-80s Bohemia was coming back to the island in all it’s imperfectness to remind everyone of Manhattan’s former greatness as a petri dish for experimentation and discovery.
Considering the huge increase in sanctioned walls over the last two years in New York, this work looks surprisingly alive, and is just the sort of balm needed for the raw nerves of anarchists everywhere who have bemoaned the polished soul-deadening mural painting of late. Even if some of this looks sort of slap-dash and ragged in spots, and it does, it also gives off an air of being authentic and in-the-moment.
Notably, the ratio of penis, breast, and defacation-related themes was higher than your average art show but as you know, there is an audience for every artist, even the ones gravitating to bathroom humor as creative wellspring. Judging by the few hundred images floating around on Flickr and elsewhere, this pop-up was a hit for the people.
Given the growing number of artists communities that have blossomed outside of Manhattan, this could have been one of its last jams for Street Art. Yo! That’s my jam!
And now please step aside as we build another luxury condo.
Join us on Saturday, August 31st for an AMAZING Harvest kickoff of Apples, Cider and Street Art as Matt Siren’s “Ghost Girl” comes to life in a Corn Maze! This one of a kind Maze challenges and educates it’s guests on all facets surrounding street art. Woodward Gallery in collaboration with internationally acclaimed master maze-maker Dave Phillips have created an original Street Art Maze theme featuring Artist Matt Siren’s iconic “Ghost Girl” over multiple acres donated by Barton Orchards in Hudson Valley (located at 63 Apple Tree Lane, Poughquag, New York; 845.227.2306 phone; www.bartonorchards.com.)
Woodward Gallery organized the following urban-based street artists to participate in this one-of-a-kind country maze: MATT SIREN, RICHARD HAMBLETON, STIKMAN, CASSIUS FOULER, DARKCLOUD, ROYCE BANNON, MOODY, and UFO.
Opening: Saturday, July 27, 6-9pm Dates: July 27 – August 31, 2013
Gallery Brooklyn, 351 Van Brunt St, Brooklyn, NY 11231 p: 347.460.4063 | www.gallerybrooklyn.com
Hours: Thu–Sat 12–6pm, Sun 12-5pm, & appointment.
SPECTRUM: ABSTRACTION THROUGH SPRAYPAINT OPENS SATURDAY JULY 27, 2013
New York City, NY — On Saturday July 27, five street-oriented painters will exhibit together under the rubric of abstraction at Gallery Brooklyn in Red Hook. For these artists, abstraction as a formal aesthetic mode functions like a prism that fractures graffiti and street art into multiple facets creating a spectrum of mutation. This exhibition introduces original specimens of hybridization, re-creation, and singularity into the taxonomy of art on the streets and in the gallery.
NO BOUNDARIES BETWEEN GRAFFITI, STREET ART AND FINE ART
Each artist has created a unique, progressive body of work due to their allowance for porous boundaries between the visual vocabularies and techniques of graffiti, street art and fine art. Emphasizing their roots as graffiti writers, Rubin crafts wildstyle abstractions into graphic geometric deconstructions, whereas Col sculpts and weaves his into weighted three-dimensional shapes and flowing, entwining color fields. Graffiti artist See One does away with letterforms completely and creates tumultuous compositions of expressionistic techniques and sharp geometric shapes, a series dubbed “shards.” Hellbent utilizes stencils, a staple tool for street artists, to compose geometric compositions out of patterns that create an impression of a collage of lace and fabrics. EKG uses an “expressionistic pixilation” to compose a space from which to transmit a network of primitively rendered marks.
CURRENT WAVE OF INTEREST IN ABSTRACTION
Painters have struggled to capture pure visionary aesthetic forms since the turn of the twentieth century. This pilgrimage along the holy path of Abstraction achieved its most widely-recognized pinnacle of experimental success and international popularity in the mid-twentieth- century with Abstract Expressionism. As we pass into the twenty-first century, another wave of renewed activity and interest in abstraction has surged within the Graffiti and Street Art movements, as well as in the fine art community and institutions. Since 2010 Graffuturism.com, a living archive of Abstract and Progressive Graffiti, has been supporting established painters, inspiring developing ones, and attracting a growing interest from the public. Collectives that center around abstract and progressive graffiti have formed or become active again, such as Agents of Change, Transcend Collective, and Ikonoklast Movement. In 2011, the book Abstract Graffiti by Cedar Lewisohn and the ArtNews article Beyond Graffiti by Carolina Miranda were published. In 2012, MoMA opened their huge exhibition, Inventing Abstraction, a historical survey of the formative years from 1910-25. BrooklynStreetArt.com also presented Geometricks, curated by Hellbent, a large group exhibition of progressive graffiti and street art. This year the Guggenheim is currently displaying New Harmony, another survey of abstraction from 1919-1939. And through June 20th at The Hole gallery, Xstraction is the third iteration in a series of exhibits since 2008 that have focused on contemporary abstraction.
ABOUT THE CURATOR: CHOICE ROYCE
Lifelong Harlem resident Royce Bannon has been drawing his infamous monsters on the streets of NYC for over a decade. He recently was honored with inclusion in the city-wide art installation project Sing For Hope. This project involved painting one of 88 pianos, which were then installed around the five boroughs of NYC. Royce also currently writes a column for The Source magazine and has curated many other exhibitions including ones at The Woodward Gallery, powerHouse Arena, and 17Frost. [ Text by Daniel Feral ]
Garrison and Alison Buxton have spent countless hours, elbow grease and their own money to make this huge non-commercial Welling Court Mural Project happen 4 years in a row – giving free walls to a few hundred artist during that time.
Cost to us: Zilch, Zero, Nada
Cultural workers extraordinaire with a Rolodex list as long as the banquet table at an Italian wedding, these two have given more Street Artists artists more free opportunities than a block full of GO-GO bars. Wait, that didn’t sound right. But you get our point.
If not, here’s the point: Go pledge 10 bucks or a hundred bucks to their fundraiser for all the fun and true community spirit they have brought people for the last four years.
After you pledge some money to their Indiegogo come back here and enjoy brand new images of the 4th Annual Welling Court installation. It may be the last time. And then all we will have left are logo-smothered festivals sponsored by cool “urban” lifestyle brands, real estate agents, energy drinks, and/or the Chamber of Commerce and The Daughters of the Revolution. Jeez that’ll be fun, won’t it?
Your cousin Harvey is a “Roofing Technologist”, which he told you with spicy sausage and beer breath at the family BBQ on Memorial Day. He says it means that he has attained proficiency in roofing technology, including roof system types, roof system design and basic installation. Also, he periodically patches holes with black boiling tar.
As the sun begins to smite the bejesus out of your average Street Artist who is looking for spots in dirty old Brooklyn, you will also find that a number of the barbeque-ists of this species can become what we like to call “roof cosmetologists”. This means that they apply learned and impromptu methods of paintology to the plain or ugly sections of industrial grade roofs, veritably transforming their appearance aestheticallistically. Armed with lawn chairs, cans, and a 40 oz. (and possibly a grill if somebody wants to carry it), these Street Artists clammer up skinny metal ladders to play some tunes, get some sun, and have their version of a picnic in the park.
We’ve waxed about summertime roofs before when we published A Roof With a View : Looking at Art Up Above, so this is sort of your Roof Update: Summer 2013. It’s true, lately rooftop parties in Brooklyn have become as ubiquitous as Olive Gardens and Applebees in strip malls and the stimulating conversations there are probably just as likely. But you won’t need a cute outfit at this cookout. Wait, well, why not, as long as your coming, and grab some Slim Jims.
But for summer funnification nothing beats the swarthy sweaty delirium of being baked alive on a chrome coated roof with no shade in the brutal sun and humidity and wielding a pile of cans of eye popping colors across the bricks – with clouds of aerosol wafting by in a fine mist and sticking to your sunglasses. That’s the ticket, bro/sis.
Recently we found this smorgasbordof new stuff on some rooftops and aesthetically, stylistically, these new pieces are strutting a pared-down new simplified look. Instead of the sweeping extravagant pieces of traditional graffiti, with many handstyles and spray tricks competing for star position, many of these are one-off soliloquies or two person collabos with a story behind them. Not that we know what the stories are – guess it’s part of the “inside baseball” side of this scene to leave you guessing. But we’ll probably all agree that some of these bricks and beams and exhaust vents have never looked so slammified, even if no one but your cousin Harvey gets to see them.
Street Artists Among those Painting Pianos for “Sing for Hope” this Year
Out in New York streets and parks and public places will be 88 pianos for you to play starting on Saturday, so it is time for you to practice your stunning rendition of “Chopsticks”, that Stevie Wonder jam in your head, or that sweeping sonata that your Aunt Winifred is so fond of. Sing for Hope is an artists’ “peace corps” project started by two Julliard sopranos Camille Zamora and Monica Yunus in 2006 and every year since has brought pianos out so the all of the public can plunk their keys for two weeks in June and have a truly interactive experience.
This year among the visual artists invited to custom design a piano are some street artists among the mix and they went on display at a private event last week before they make their debut throughout the 5 boroughs on June 1. Here we show you newly designed pianos by 3 of the grand participants and names you might recognize, Royce Bannon, Alice Mizrachi, and Bluster One. Together with the 85 other artists, they are part of a program that hopes to be a “nation-wide movement that activates artists as agents of transformation in under-served areas and promotes the ideal of art for all.”
“I have been working with Sing for Hope for the past 2 years as both an artist and teaching artist,” says Alice Mizrachi, who worked on sculptures for the gala and participated in the project in 2011 also. As a teaching artist Mizrachi aims to bring arts and activism to classrooms, which have included NYC neighborhoods in Harlem and Bushwick.
Of her baby grand this year, Alice says she wanted it to reflect the struggles of rebuilding after the hurricane over the last half year and to reflect stories she heard from many of the students whose families have been facing adversity since Sandy.
“Since my year was focused on community building through my arts education residencies, I wanted my piano to depict a teacher and student in their NYC environment,” Alice explains, “Building community by empowering people to express through an arts practice is one of my life long missions.”
Looks like the Yankees could have used Joe Biden last night. “Who is this grandpa man?”, said my homey Ikbar behind the counter at the news stand, irritated that the Vice President has to hog half the cover of the New York Post from Derek Jeter. Guess the Scranton Slugger was knocking them out of the wrong park for some New Yorkers last night.
Also, anybody know why there are 10 TV vans with their saucers rotating on top and kleig lights at the end of their extended electronic probes blinding innocent semi-sleeping commuters walking by the Marcy projects in Brooklyn this morning? Saw Blondy McBlonderwig with perfect teeth and fishbowl eyes shrieking in a trench coat in front of the camera on the way to the M train, safely behind all the “crime scene” tape. Think the news has decided to do a story on the class war?
And now LIVE, here are the important up-to-the-minute stories we’re following for you this hour on WBSA.
1. Bedlam in London
2. Jaye Moon Breaks the Code (NYC)
3. Moniker 2012 (London)
4. John Breiner at Mighty Tanaka (Brooklyn)
5. “Good Guys” in Chicago
6. "Street Art Live" in Da Bronx All Day Sunday
7. SANER "Catharsis" From The Cinema (VIDEO)
8. I Love Paris Volume 5 by kouettv (VIDEO)
For further information regarding this show click here.
Jaye Moon Breaks the Code (NYC)
She’s been constructing on the streets for a year or two, but her main tricks have been in the gallery for about a decade. Street and Fine Artist Jaye Moon has a new solo show titled “Breaking the Code” at the Newman Popiashvili Gallery in Manhattan so you can see where some of this Lego madness came from. Study the numbers and the text and break the code. And don’t forget to hit up Red Hook Brooklyn because Jaye Moon is also an artist in GEOMETRICKS currently on view at Gallery Brooklyn.
For further information regarding this show click here.
For further information regarding GEOMETRICKS click here.
Moniker 2012 (London)
MONIKER ART FAIR is in full swing and open for business until this Sunday. Take a trip to The Village Underground in Shoreditch if you are interested on seeing original works of art by some Street Artists who are moving the conversation on the streets right now. Remi Rough, Penny, Niels ‘Shoe’ Meulman, Ludo, Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada, Hush, C215, Ben Slow are all represented with installations and new works of art.
For further details and a full list of artists and schedules click here.
John Breiner at Mighty Tanaka (Brooklyn)
Not a Street Artist but seemingly always in the street mix – maybe he has a lot of Street Art friends or something because Jon Breiner has been at a lot of events over the last couple of years and we’ve had the opportunity to see his studio work evolve so here’s a shout out. Breiner might be one of those definitely underrated fine artists that you don’t pay much attention to and then BAM!, where the hell did this kid come from? A curator of shows and DJ, Breiner goes deep below still waters; Fastidious in his craft Mr. Breiner’s work gets close and personal, meticulously drawn and painted, portaits with weight intricately real and occasional surreal little stories with plots that are off center. His new show titled “Sooner or Later We All Make the Little Flowers Grow” opens tonight at the Mighty Tanaka Gallery in DUMBO.
John Breiner. Detail. (image courtesy of the gallery)
For further information regarding this show click here.
“Good Guys” in Chicago
Wanna know who “The Good Guys” are? Head over to 2381 Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago where The HOTBOX MOBILE GALLERY new group show will open tomorrow showcasing local talent of Chicago born and raised Street Artists including, Left Handed Wave, Brooks Golden, Clam Nation, Don’t Fret, Espir, Nudnik, Lucx and Nice-one.
For further information regarding this show click here.
“Street Art Live” in Da Bronx All Day Sunday
This Sunday the Sermon is at The Bronx and the Minister is SinXero.
Showing brotherly love New York style, a group of Street Artists including Army of One/JC2, Fumero, ADAM DARE, TONE TANK, Elle Deadsex, ENX, Choice Royce, Royce Bannon, See One & Danielle Mastrion, VEXTA, Mike Die, KID Lew, & ZIMAD, as well as, SinXero (SX) & colleague Bayoan will gather at Graffiti Universe for “Street Art Live”. An event to honor Iranian brothers and Street Srtists Icy & Sot.
It’s a Sunrise Service so just stay up Saturday night >> The event begins at 5:00 am until the whole block at Graffiti Universe is completely painted.
For further information regarding this event click here.
Also happening this weekend:
The Kosmopolite Art Tour in Amsterdam, brought to you by Aerosol Bridge Club began on Wednesday and will continue until this Sunday at the MC Theater in Amsterdam. Big mural live painting with appearances from local and international artists with tons of side events. Click here for more details regarding this event.
Monsieur A the French artist is in Mexico City for his solo show “André Saraiva” at the Anonymous Gallery. This show is now open to the general public. Click here for more details about this show.
Low Brow Artique Gallery goes soft brow with Dickchicken’s solo show “The Penis Mightier Than the Sword” opening tonight in Brooklyn. Click here for more details about this show.
Mad One and Neely II are hosting “Sticker Phiends” in Tempe, Arizona opening tomorrow. This annual sticker feast attracts a huge following of national and international sticker artists and fans. Click here for more details about this event.