Artmossphere is the only Russian biennale that focuses primarily on Street Art and its corollary practices, with the first two launching in 2014 and 2016. You may remember the full coverage BSA had in 2016 at the Moscow Manege;
Among the artists participating on previous editions of Artmossphere have been people like The London Police, Brad Downey, Claudio Ethos, Agostino Iocurci Miss Van, L’Atlas, Sickboy, Jaz, Nespoon, Martha Cooper, Remi Rough, Alexey Luka, Remed, Li Hill, Jessie and Katey, Moneyless, El Tono, and many others – but clearly you can see that the quality and diversity in practices and backgrounds is well represented here.
For the 2018 edition of the biennale we will be curating the program along with some of our respected peers internationally in this field and collectively we are asking artists to consider what it means to be “Offline”. So much of graffiti and Street Art’s roots extend back to a practice of making work for a largely local audience that is limited to geography.
Today much work in public space is conceived of, at least in part, for its ability to traverse to audiences on social media, blogs, video, and all manner of digital platforms. As we constantly are flooded with online Street Art, is it possible to be ‘Offline”?
The 2018 main exhibition will take place in the Excise Storehouse of Winzavod Centre for Contemporary Art in Moscow from August 30th to October 17th. Additional special exhibitions will be held in the Red and White Halls, as well as in the art cluster outdoor territory.
The open call is open to Russian and international artists and applications with projects exploring this year’s theme will be reviewed by an international jury consisting of Steven P. Harrington and Jaime Rojo, co-founders of BrooklynStreetArt.com and curators at Urban Nation Museum of Urban Contemporary Art (UN), Peter Ernst Coolen, curator of the Amsterdam Street Art Museum, Cedar Lewisohn, curator of the Street Art project in Tate Modern,Ethel Seno, researcher of street art and curator, Anna Dimitrova, curator of Adda Gallery, Paris and MTN Gallery, Barcelona, and Nikolay Palazhchenko, the founder of the Winzavod Centre for Contemporary Art in Moscow.
To take part in the biennale, Artmossphere artists should submit their portfolio and their project application for the biennale before June 18th, 2018. All the projects should be made exclusively for the biennale. Click here for all details.
The Artmossphere Biennale jump-starts the debate for many about how to best present the work of Street Artists and organizers here in Moscow chose a broad selection of curators from across a spectrum of private, commercial, academic and civically-inspired perspectives to present a solid range of artists from the graffiti and Street Art world inside a formal hall.
To be clear, unless it is illegal and on the street, it is not graffiti nor Street Art. That is the prevailing opinion about these terms among experts and scholars of various stripes and it is one we’re comfortable with. But then there are the commercial and cultural influences of the art world and the design industries, with their power to reshape and loosen terms from their moorings. Probably because these associated art movements are happening and taking shape before our eyes and not ensconced in centuries of scholarship we can expect that we will continue to witness the morphing our language and terminologies, sometimes changing things in translation.
Definitions aside, when you think of more organic Street Art scenes which are always re-generating themselves in the run-down abandoned sectors of cities like Sao Paulo, New York, Melbourne, Paris, Mexico City, London, and Berlin, it is interesting to consider that this event takes place nearly on the grounds of the Kremlin under museum like security.
An international capital that ensures cleanly buffed walls within hours of the appearance of any unapproved Street Art or graffiti, Moscow also boasts a growing contingent of art collectors who are young enough to appreciate the cultural currency of this continuously mutating hybrid of graffiti, hip hop, DIY, muralism, and art-school headiness. The night clubs and fashionable kids here are fans of events like hip-hop and graffiti jams, sometimes presented as theater and other times as “learning workshops” and the like.
Plugging into this idea of street and youth culture is not a singular fascination – there is perhaps an association with the rebellious anti-authoritarian nature of unregulated art in the streets that fuels the interest of many. With graffiti and hip-hop culture adoption as a template, newer expressions of Street Art culture are attractive as well with high profile artists with rebel reputations are as familiar in name here as in many cities. New festivals and events sometimes leverage this renegade free-spirit currency for selling tourism and brands and real estate, but here there also appears to be an acute appreciation for its fine art expression – urban contemporary art.
MOSCOW’S MANEGE AND “DEGENERATE ART”
So ardent is the support for Artmossphere here that a combination of public and private endorsements and financial backing have brought it to be showcased in a place associated with high-culture and counter-culture known as the Moscow Manege (Мане́ж). The location somehow fits the rebellious spirit that launched these artists even if its appearance wouldn’t lead you to think that.
The 19th century neo-classical exhibition hall stands grandly adjacent to Red Square and was built as an indoor riding school large enough to house a battalion of 2,000 soldiers during the 1800s. It later became host to many art exhibitions in the 20th century including a famous avant-garde show in 1962 that Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev famously derided as displaying ‘degenerate’ art.
One of the artists whose work was criticized, painter and sculptor Ernst Neizvestny, challenged the label defiantly and won accolades afterward during his five decade career that followed, including receiving many awards and his work being collected worldwide by museums. Russian President Vladimir Putin is quoted as calling him “a recognised master and one of the best contemporary sculptors”. In January of this year at the age of 90, Neizvestny’s return to Menage featured an extensive exhibition. He passed away August 9th (The Moscow Times), only weeks before Artmossphere opened.
In some kindred spirit many of these artists at Artmossphere have done actual illegal work on the streets around the world during their respective creative evolutions, and graffiti and Street Art as a practice have both at various times been demonized, derided, dismissed and labeled by critics in terms synonymous with “degenerate”.
A CLEAN CITY
“Moscow is mostly very clean,” says Artmossphere co-founder and Creative Director Sabine Chagina, who walks with guests during a sunny afternoon in a busy downtown area just after the opening. “But we do have some good graffiti crews,” she says as we round the corner from the famous Bolshoi Theater and soon pass Givenchy and Chanel and high-end luxury fashion stores. Shortly we see a mural nearby by French artist Nelio, who painted a lateral abstracted geometric, possibly cubist, piece on the side of a building here in 2013 as part of the LGZ Festival.
If there was graffiti here in Moscow, it was not on full display very readily in this part of town. In driving tours, rides on the extensive metro train system, and in street hikes across the city a visitor may find that much of the illegal street art and graffiti common to other global capitals is illusive due to a general distaste for it and a dedicated adherence to buffing it out quickly.
For a pedestrian tourist Moscow appears in many ways as fully contemporary and architecturally rich as any international world-class metropolis. One of the cleanest places you’ll visit, the metro is almost museum-like in some instances; the historic districts spotless, public fountains, famed statues of important historical figures. All is efficiently ordered and – a welcome surprise – most public space is free of advertisements interrupting your view and your thoughts.
Come to think of it, the sense of commercial-celebrity media saturation that is present in other cities doesn’t appear to permeate the artists psyche here at the Biennale – so there’s not much of the ironic Disney-Marilyn-supermodel-Kardashian-skewering of consumerism and shallowness in this exhibition that you may find in other Urban Art events.
Also, unlike a Street Art-splattered show in London for example that may rudely mock Queen Elizabeth or art in New York streets that present Donald Trump styled as a pile of poo and Hillary Clinton as Heath Ledger’s Joker, we didn’t see over-the-top Putin satires either. So personality politics don’t seem directly addressed in this milieu. According to some residents there was an outcropping of huge festival murals by Street Artists here just a few years ago but more recently they have been painted over with patriotic or other inspiring murals, while others have been claimed for commercial interests.
Starved for some gritty street scenes, it is all the more interesting to see the one live mural painting that we were able to catch – a 6-story red-lined op-art tag by the French graffiti writer L’Atlas. Far from Manege, placed opposite a cineplex in what appears to be a shopping mall situated far from the city’s historical and modern centers, our guide tells us half-jokingly that he is not sure that we are still in Moscow.
Here L’Atlas says that he has painted his bar-code-like and cryptic nom-de-plume with an assistant on a cherry picker for a few days and he says that no one has stopped to ask him about it, neither to comment or criticize. Actually one man early one morning returning home from a disco did engage him briefly, but it was difficult to tell what he was talking about as he may have had a few drinks.
This lack of public commentary is mainly notable because in other cities the comments from passersby can be so ubiquitous that artists deliberately wear stereo headphones to prevent interruption and to be more productive. Sometimes the headphones are not actually playing music.
This Street Art Biennale nonetheless is gaining a higher profile among Urban Art collectors and its associated art dealers and the opening and later auction reaches directly to this audience. Included this year with the primary “Invisible Walls” exhibition are satellite events in association with local RuArts Gallery, Tsekh Belogo at Winzavod, and the Optika Pavilion (No. 64) at VDNKh.
The opening night event itself is wide and welcoming, a mostly youthful and populist affair with celebratory speeches and loosely organized group photos and an open bar. Added together with a press conference, a live DJ, virtual reality headsets, interactive artworks, major private business sponsors, government grants, ministers of culture, gallerists, and quirkily fashionable art fans, this is a polished presentation of a global culture that is filtered through the wide lense of the street.
Perhaps because the exhibition hall is a cavernous rectangle with exposed beams on the ceiling and many of the constructed white walls that mimic vendor booths, it has the air of an art fair. There are thankfully no salespeople pacing back and forth watching your level of interest. People tend to cluster before installations and talk, laugh, share a story, pose for a selfie.
The theme seems very appropriately topical as geopolitical, trade-related, social, digital, and actual walls appear to be falling down rapidly today while the foundations of new ones are taking shape. Catalyzed perhaps by the concept and practices of so-called “globalization” – with its easy flow of capital and restricted flow of humans, we are all examining the walls that are shaping our lives.
With 60+ international artists working simultaneously throughout this massive hall, newly built walls are the imperative for displaying art, supporting it, dividing it. These are the visible ones. With so many players and countries represented here, one can only imagine that there are a number of invisible walls present as well.
The theme has opened countless interpretations in flat and sculptural ways, often expressed in the vernacular of fine art with arguable nods to mid-20th century modernists, folk art, fantasy, representational art, abstract, conceptual, computer/digital art, and good old traditional graffiti tagging. Effectively it appears that when Street Art and graffiti artists pass the precipice into a multi-disciplinary exhibition such as this, one can reframe Urban/Street as important tributaries to contemporary art – but will they re-direct the flow or be subsumed within it?
The work often can be so far removed from street practice that you don’t recognize it as related.
Aside from putting work up in contested public space without permission and under cover, an average visitor may not see a common thread. These works run aesthetic to the conceptual, painterly to the sculptural, pure joy and pure politics. But then, that is we began to see in the streets as well when the century turned to the 21st and art students in large numbers in cities like New York and London and Berlin skipped the gatekeepers, taking their art directly to the public.
Perhaps beneath the surface or just above it, there is a certain anarchistic defiance, a critique of social, economic, political issues, a healthy skepticism toward everyone and everything that reeks of hypocritical patriarchal power structures. Perhaps we’re just projecting.
Looking over the 60+ list of names, it may be striking to some that very few are people of color, especially in view of the origins of the graffiti scene. Similarly, the percentage of women represented is quite small. We are familiar with this observation about Urban Art in general today, and this show mirrors the European and American scene primarily, with notable exceptions such as Instagrafite’s home-based Brazilian crew of 4 artists. As only one such sampling of a wide and dispersed scene, it is not perhaps fair to judge it by artists race, gender, or background, but while we speak of invisible walls it is worth keeping our eyes on as this “scene” is adopted into galleries, museums, and private collections.
Following are some of the artists on view at Artmossphere:
Certainly Moscow native ASKE is gently mocking our mutated modern practices of communicating with his outsized blocked abstraction of a close couple riveted to their respective electronic devices, even unaware of one another.
Warsaw based NeSpoon creates a sculpture of another couple. Heroically presenting her vision of what she calls the iconic “Graffiti Writer” and “Street Art Girl”, they face the future with art instruments in hand ready to make their respective marks. She says her work is emblematic of a permanent financial insecurity for a generation she calls the “PRECARIAT”.
“ ‘Precariat’ is the name of the new emerging social class,” says curator, organizer, and NeSpoon’s partner Marcin Rutkiewicz when talking about the piece during the press conference. “These are young people living without a predictable future, without good jobs, without social security. It’s a class in the making and probably these people don’t have any consciousness or global unity of interest. But they are the engines of protest for people all over the world – like Occupy Wall Street, Gezi Park in Turkey, or the Arab Spring.”
The artist developed the sculpture specifically for this exhibition and planned it over the course of a year or so. Born of a social movement in Poland by the same name, the sculpture and its sticker campaign on the street represent “a kind of protest against building walls between people who are under the same economical and social situation all over the world,” says Rutkiewicz.
Artist Li-Hill says his piece “Guns, Germs, and Steel” directly relates to the divisions between civilizations due to a completely uneven playing field perpetuated through generations. Inspired by the 1997 trans-disciplinary non-fiction book by Jared Diamond, Li-Hill says the Russian sculptural group called “The Horse Tamers” represents mankind’s “ability to harness power of the natural world and to be able to manipulate it for its advantage.”
“The horse is one of the largest signifiers and is a catalyst for advancement in society because it has been for military use, for agriculture, for transportation,” he says. “It was the most versatile of the animals and the most powerful.” Here he painted a mirror image, balanced over a potential microbial disaster symbol, and he and the team are building a mirrored floor to “give it this kind of infinite emblem status.”
Afloat in the middle of some of these walled areas M-City from Poland is choosing to be more direct thematically in his three dimensional installation of plywood, plaster, aerosol and bucket paint, and machine blown insulation.
“It is an anti-war piece,” he says, and he speaks about the walls between nations and a losing battle of dominance that ensures everyone will be victim.”
“It’s kind of a monster who destroys arms,” he says of this temporary sculpture with a lording figure crushing tanks below.
“He is destroying the tanks but at the same time he is also a destroyer – so it’s a big circle. Nothing is positive that can come out of this. There is always someone bigger.” He says the piece is inspired by the political situations in Europe today and the world at large.
Minneapolis based HOTTEA usually does very colorful yarn installations transforming a huge public space, but for Artmossphere he is taking the conceptual route. The walk-in room based on the Whack-A-Mole game presents holes which a visitor can walk under and rise above.
Visitors/participants will experience the physical separation of space, and perhaps contemplate facing one another and interacting or ignoring one another. It is something he says he hopes will draw attention to how many walls we have allowed ourselves to distract from human interactions.
Englands’ Sick Boy calls his project The Rewards System, where guests are invited to climb a ladder over a brick wall and descend down a slide into a darkened house, setting off a series of sensors that activate a variety of multisensory lights and tantalizing patterns. After landing and being rewarded the visitor is forced to exit on hands and knees through a too-small square door.
“The concept of the show is about invisible walls so I was thinking about there being barriers in your life and I thought about the reward of endorphins one experiences for achieving a task – a small amount of endorphins. So I thought I would build a house that signifies the reward system,” he explains.
Atlanta/Seattle based Derek Bruno reached back to the Leonid Brezhnev years and into Moscow’s Gorky Park for his series of site specific installations based on Soviet Cement Fence type PO-2. The iconic fence was re-created in a nearby studio and Bruno shot photographs of his 10-15 minute “interventions” in the park itself, revisiting a field of design called “technical aesthetics.”
In a statement Bruno explains “Since the end of the Soviet Union, the iconic fence has become a persistent and ever present reminder of former delineations of space; while new forms of boundaries shape the digital and sociopolitical landscapes. “
Remi Rough is known for his smartly soaring abstract geometry in painted murals and smaller scale works, and for Moscow he wanted to strip it back to the basics, approaching a white box with one undulating graphic composition.
“My idea was that Moscow’s a bit ‘over the top’,” he says, and he decided to strip back the audacity and go for simplicity, which actually takes courage.
“I said ‘you know what?’ – I want to do something with the cheapest materials you can possibly get. These two pieces literally cost 3000 rubles ($50). It’s made of felt, it’s like a lambs wool. I think they use it for flooring for construction.” Depending on the angle, the pink blotted material may translate as a swath of otherworldly terrain or a metaphorical bold vision with all the hot air let out.
“I wanted to do something peaceful and calming and use natural materials – something that’s different from what I usually do – but I use the folds in the fabric and the pink color – two things that I usually use a lot.”
Moscow’s Alexey Luka is also challenging himself to stretch creatively by taking his wall collage installations of found wood and converting them into free-standing sculptures.
“For this biennale I tried to make something different so now I am going from the assemblages to 3-D.” The constructed media is warm and ordered, reserved but not without whimsy.
“My work is made from found wood – I use it with what I found on the street and my shapes and my graphics – so it’s kind of an experiment with three dimensions,” and he confirms that most of this wood is sourced here in Moscow.
We ask him about the number of eyes that peer out from his installation. Perhaps these eyes are those of Muscovites? “They are just like observers,” he says.
Torino’s Mimmo recreated the Moscow Olympic Village from the 1980 games in miniature presented as on a plainly brutalist platform. The sculpture is austere in detail on the hulking towers save for the tiny graffiti tags, throwies, rollers, extinguisher tags, and the like at the bases and on the roofs.
Curator Christian Omodeo tells us that Mimmo recreated the massive village based on his direct study of the site as it stands today; a housing project that has hundreds of families — and a hip-hop / graffiti scene as well.
It is striking that the scale reduces the impact of the graffiti – yet when experienced at eye-level it retains a potency. Even so, by recasting the relationship between viewer and mark-making, this graffiti actually seems “cute” because of its relative size to the viewer.
Brad Downey and Alexander Petrelli hi-jacked the opening of the Biennale by circulating within the exhibit as a gallery with artworks for sale. With Downey performing as a street-huckster pushing his own art products, Mr. Patrelli showcased new Downey photo collages and drawings inside his mobile “Overcoat Gallery”
A charming Moscow art star / gallerist / performance artist, Mr. Patrelli is also a perennial character at openings and events in the city, by one account having appeared at 460 or so events since 1992 with his flashing overcoat. The artworks also feature Patrelli, completing a self-referential meta cycle that continued to circle the guests at the exhibition.
International artists participating in the Artmossphere Biennale 2016 include: Akacorleone, Alex Senna, Brad Downey, Chu (Doma), Orilo (Doma), Claudio Ethos, Demsky, Christopher Derek Bruno, Filippo Minelli, Finok, Galo, Gola Hundun, Hot Tea, Jaz, Jessie and Katey, Johannes Mundinger, L’Atlas, LiHill, LX One, M-city, TC, Mario Mankey, Martha Cooper, Miss Van, Nespoon, Millo, Pablo Benzo, Pastel, Paulo Ito, Proembrion, Remed, Remi Rough, Rub Kandy, Run, Sepe, Sickboy, Smash 137, Sozyone Gonsales, SpY, The London Police, Trek Matthews, Wes 21.
The 6th Marrakech Biennale brings a number of parallel projects into the Medina this year, including performances and public education programs. MB6 Street Art brings the art to the streets for both serious art fans and everyday members of the public who can appreciate it entirely free.
Over the week in Marrakech we found that the people didn’t necessarily know about the large international art show happening in the historical heritage sites around them, but they certainly had impressions and opinions of these murals being put up by international (and one local) Street Artists.
As an update to the progress of the new murals going up under the direction of the MB6 team, here are some shots on the street with Dotmasters, Giacomo Buffarini (RUN), and SickBoy.
The Berlin adventure entitled Urban Nation is readying for substantial renovation over the next year and meanwhile has embarked on rotating external exhibition of artists from many disciplines called ProjectM. Today we bring you images of the most recent in the series called M/5, curated by Roland Henry in conjunction with VNA Magazine and give an idea of the range of contemporary works and artists influencing the street art scene today through his eyes.
The works are completed inside the future museum and displayed on the street along with a huge façade painting by Ben Eine. Here are images from the new headquarters as the artists prepared their works for Project M/5 and the list of artists includes Mark Lyken, Pam Glew, Will Barras, Eine, Steff Plaetz, Nick Walker, O.Two, Sickboy, Zenx and Ben Frost.
“I felt an intimacy with them…bordering on frenzy [that] must accompany my steps through life,” said the celebrated John James Audubon, the French-American naturalist and painter more than 200 years ago of his deep love for birds that began as a teenager and lead to his illustrations of the still revered book The Birds of America. By now we may consider the Belgian artist named ROA to be an Audubon of the Streets, so committed he is to documenting by hand and sharing with the public his studies of the animal world on walls, especially those that are often overlooked or dismissed as pests.
As we have tracked the aerosol orinthologist and urban naturalist for you during his travels of the last few years, his dedication to showcasing the oft-marginalized creatures of towns, cities, and regions around the world has not waned. Like Audubon, his depictions have become progressively more accurate in detail and now give a greater sense of mass, texture, and the presence of the subject.
Today we bring you new unpublished photos from some of his recent travels to Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Panama, along with some insights from ROA about some of the animals he has come in contact with. Not only do we not recognize a number of them, we also probably haven’t seen their skeletons or musculature, which the artist sometimes peels the skin off of for us to inspect.
“This past November I was invited to Melbourne for my solo show ‘Carrion’ in the Backwoods Gallery. The installation I built for the show was inspired by the numerous amount of roadkill that there is on the Australian continent. During my stay I painted a few days in the Healesville Sanctuary which specializes in rescuing and recovering native Australian animals and conducts breeding programs for almost-extinguished species. The sanctuary adopted a litter of orphaned marsupial babies found in the pouch of a mother who had been hit by a car.”
One morning after a storm as I walked to the gallery through a park I found a dead bat. When I looked under its wings I also discovered a living baby, which I helped to rescue and it is doing fine.
Here you can see that I painted an echidna (first image), an egg-laying mammal that I had spotted a few days earlier while in a car driving in Tasmania.
The skeleton images are of a wombat, a marsupial that often is hit by cars in Victoria and should always be observed after finding it to assure that there is not a living baby left in the pouch who needs to be rescued”
After his visit to Melbourne, ROA traveled to Argentina where he was hosted and entertained by EVER and who showed him a great time for the New Year’s holiday in Buenos Aires. They also each did a new piece side by side while he was there.
“I painted a Serenia (sea cow) paradoxically also a ‘cow’. It’s a native (Patagonia) sea mammal and an herbavour,”says ROA. According to online sources Brazil outlawed hunting of sea cows (or manatees) in 1973.
Reminding you of the animal-as-food connection, ROA completed this partially skinned bull on the terrace of his friends place at the Post Bar and ‘Hollywood in Cambodia Gallery‘. “Maybe is is a sort of ‘Memento Mori’ in this beef and BBQ country,” he jests in a half-serious wisecrack
São Paulo, BRAZIL
ROA brought four new friends along to his first visit to São Paulo, a city that he has wanted to visit for a long time. “In March I stayed there a month and it was like a dream that finally came true. I loved it,” he says of the visit that was hosted by the people from Mathilda Cultural, who showed him around the city. Included in the walls were a bird, an anteater, an anteater, and the largest rodent in the world a capybara.
ROA would like to thank Sumo, INSANO and his other friends of Panama City for hosting him while there.
Finally, a new book cover by ROA
In March, 2013 ROA was one of ten Street Artists commissioned by Pinguin Books UK to create a cover for their series pairing Street Artists with contemporary authors whose modern classics novels are being re-issued.
A photo of ROA’s piece below graces the cover for the re-issue of singer, musician and author Nick Cage’s novel “And The Ass Saw The Angel”.
Yowsah! It’s a Triple Header for Street Artist shows in Brooklyn tonight, with Haring at the Museum, Stikman at Pandemic, and JMR/See One at Mighty Tanaka. But that’s not all that’s happening this weekend.
1. Keith Haring: 1978-1982
2. Stikman “20” at Pandemic
3. JMR and See One @ Pandemic
4. SANER @ Fifty24SF (San Francisco)
5. Chris Stain “Long Story Short” at Wooster Social Club
6. Sickboy, White Walls Gallery new show “Wonder Club”
7. Asbjorn Skou AKA Armsrock “Stedfortrædere” at Mosh Gallery in Copenhagen
8. “My Turn” at Carmichael Gallery with Bumblebee, Hyuro, Interesni Kazki, Jaz, Klone, LineLineDot, Moneyless, Penny, Stinkfish, Zeus.
9. KEMP “Behind her Disguise” at Artsee.
10. Kid NES in Dallas. Time Lapse (VIDEO)
11. Mimi The Clown turns Superhero by OAOFB. (VIDEO)
12. Mimi The Clown turns Superhero by OAOFB. (VIDEO 2)
13. Ben Eine getting up in London by Abbie Brandon (VIDEO)
Keith Haring: 1978-1982
“This exhibition shows you how much fun New York City used to be” – Mare 139
Opening to the public today Keith Haring: 1978-1982 at the Brooklyn Museum and while Mare 139 has a point, we contend that Brooklyn is still tons of fun, if Manhattan has lost much of it’s edge. Regarding this exhibit, GO! Exquisitely curated, it welcomes the viewer to Mr. Haring’s early days in NYC when the “downtown” scene was the scene.
The curators have included pieces rarely or never before viewed including an amazing slide show of images taken by Kwong Chi showing the artist illegally putting work in the subways. Combined with some of Harings journals, his Cipher chart, videos and 155 works mostly on paper, it is informative, accessible and fun to see.
For more information regarding this exhibition click here.
To read our article on the Huffington Post of this exhibition with a complete photo essay and and written overview click here.
Stikman “20” at Pandemic
One of the most prolific and hermetic Street Artists working today on the streets of New York, sometimes literally melted into the street, Stikman has a gentle legend to his name. His solo show “20” opens today at Pandemic Gallery today, offering a rare glimpse into his world of secrecy and continuous invention. The little stick character he’s been leaving for two decades is synonymous with the symbol-based tagging of graff writers and the re-inventive practice of a fine artist continuously exploring new techniques of expression.
For further information regarding this show click here.
JMR and See One @ Pandemic
Fresh off their showing at Fountain last weekend, Mighty Tanaka is not skipping a beat by unveiling a brand new dual show in Dumbo tonight. If you thrill to “Color and Motion” then check out new works by JMR and See One tonight.
For further information regarding this show click here.
SANER @ Fifty24SF (San Francisco)
Mexican Street Artist SANER has been impressing Street Art and graff fans in the last couple of years with his near magic interpretations, incredibly rendered. A down to earth fellow who often teams up with SEGO for collaborations, the artist makes his debut solo show in San Francisco tonight at the Fifty24SF Gallery.
For further information regarding this show click here.
Chris Stain “Long Story Short” at Wooster Social Club
At the crowded opening for Chris Stain’s new show and book launch Wednesday, the vibe was a testament to his working class roots and real people charm, with Billy Mode on the turntables and Ray Cross from Bushwick Print Lab screen-printing some fresh Occupy Wall Street posters for people to take to the streets. It’s the the kind of kindred community that fostered “Long Story Short”, his new monogram on Drago, and the kind of environment that makes Stains work resonant in these times where the working person feels like they have a boot to his/her neck. Stop by The Wooster Social Club anytime to see Mr. Stain’s new body of work and catch an intimate look into his influences both as an artist and as a person.
For further information regarding this show click here.
Also happening this weekend:
San Francisco’s White Walls Gallery new show “Wonder Club” opens tomorrow. This is Sickboy‘s first US major solo show. Click here for more information about this show.
Asbjorn Skou AKA Armsrock new show “Stedfortrædere ” at the Mosh Gallery in Copenhagen, Denmark opens today. Click here for more information about this show.
Bumblebee curates the new show “My Turn” at the Carmichael Gallery in Culver City, CA opening this Saturday with artists including: Bumblebee, Hyuro, Interesni Kazki, Jaz, Klone, LineLineDot, Moneyless, Penny, Stinkfish, Zeus. Click here for more information about this show.
KEMP solo show “Behind her Disguise” is marks his New York debut at Artsee. This show is now open to the general public. Click here for more information about this show.
Kid NES in Dallas. Time Lapse (VIDEO)
Mimi The Clown turns Superhero by OAOFB. (VIDEO)
Mimi The Clown turns Superhero by OAOFB. (VIDEO 2)
Ben Eine getting up in London by Abbie Brandon (VIDEO)
White Walls is pleased to present Wonder Club, a new body of work from famed UK- artist Sickboy. The opening reception will be Saturday, March 17th, from 7-11 pm, and the exhibition is free and open to the public for viewing through April 7th, 2012.
Hot off the heels of his critically acclaimed UK solo show last November, Heaven and Earth, comes Sickboy’s first US major solo show, Wonder Club. The title refers to a meeting place in the mind of the artist, where his cryptic street messages, surreal abstraction and comical illusions all come together. Sickboy’s new works reveal inspiration drawn from anatomical studies, the age of enlightenment, romanticism, comic books and fairy tales.
A solid body of work has been produced for Wonder Club, including eight large-scale (all measuring around four by three feet) surreally intricate, paintings, focusing on the inner workings of the human body. These large paintings, which bring the aesthetic of Sickboy’s street work into the gallery, are paired alongside installations which will act to transform the entire space into a dream world.
Sickboy’s always innovative installations will be outdone with this show, featuring a few surprises and the “Artists’ Refuge,” an enclosed space built within the gallery that visitors may enter.
Amidst the dream land that Sickboy constructs you can expect to find smaller works exploring a new direction in mixed media ephemera, adorned on locally found San Francisco surfaces to place the artist’s imagery into a local context as well as a video collaboration with well-known London photographer Viktor Vauthier, capturing the creative process in motion.
From the Artist:
“I see art as escapism, it’s an addictive solution to the daily deluge of life, the ‘Wonder Club’ is a place I can visit in my mind to try and bring daydreams to life, I have been documenting ideas as they happen and making sure I capture their essence by developing them into highly intricate finished paintings, it has meant a progressive shift from earlier freestyle work and more towards structured pieces that focus on content and message. This exhibition is for me a revisiting of the inner child and questioning what my dreams represent today.”
A leading artist to emerge from Bristol’s infamous graffiti scene, Sickboy’s humorous work has cemented his place in the upper echelons of the British street art movement. He is one of the first UK artists to use a logo in place of a tag, and his red and yellow street logo known as ‘The Temple’ can be seen on walls and wheelie bins worldwide. Sickboy has built up one of the largest bodies of street art works in UK history. His work hit the big screen recently in Banksy’s Oscar-nominated film, Exit Through the Gift Shop, and he is tipped by the leading financial press as one of the movement’s most bankable artists. His temples, slogans and audacious stunts – including the caged heart installation dropped outside the Tate Modern in 2008 – have landed him global recognition.
Wonder Club, a Solo Exhibition by Sickboy Opening Reception – March 17, 2012, 7-11 pm On View Through April 7th, 2012,
@ White Walls (www.whitewallssf.com)
835 Larkin St
San Francisco, CA
Bring to Light is New York City’s first-ever Nuit Blanche festival. A Nuit Blanche is an all night arts festival of installations and performances celebrating the magic and luminance of light.
BRING TO LIGHT NYC will be held in Greenpoint, Brooklyn primarily on Oak Street between Franklin St. and the East River waterfront beginning at sundown this Saturday Oct. 2. The event is free and open to the public. This unique block will play host to local and international artists, performers, galleries, and musicians as they Bring to Light the street itself as well as its unique assets including metal, set design and textile workshops, residential facades, an indoor gymnastics park, and much more.
Jacob Abramson will perform his Digital Graffiti at “Bring To Light”
The experience will be thrilling, original, mesmerizing, ceremonial, contemplative and illuminating. This is a one-night event to remember, but also the start of something intended to grow into an annual, world-class event. Artists will create works that inhabit street corners, galleries, shops, rooftops, vacant lots and buildings. These spaces will act as sites for light, sound and unexpected installations, performances, projections, works of art with natural and artificial LIGHT.
Please click on the animation here to visit the event’s site for a full list of artists as well as all pertinent information regarding time, location and transportation to the event.
WE ALSO ENCOURAGE YOU TO PLEASE CLICK ON THE “HELP FUND THISEVENT” BANNER ON THEIR SITE. DONATE WHAT YOU CAN TO THE KICK STARTER CAMPAIGN. WE DON’T WANT THESE KIDS TO GO BROKE TO ILLUMINATE US ALL!
BLF in New York
Long before Street Artists like Fauxreel or PosterBoy started messing with them, the BLF (billboardliberation.com) began altering outdoor advertising in 1977. They like to say they are helping improve the billboards. As they say in their press release, “prior campaigns have included work for Exxon, R.J. Reynolds, and Apple Computers.” Thoughtful, no?
A new short film featuring Specter, Signtologist, the Public Art Campaign and Jayshells
Street Art Launch… Join us for the UK launchof our new exhibition – Street Art, Contemporary Prints from the V&Afeaturing works by Banksy, Ben Eine and D*Face on Thursday 7 October, 7:00pm – 10:00pm. Be the first to see this exhibition alongside new works from amazing regional artists. DJing, live animation projection, licensed bar and a live art battle will also be taking place. To reserve your place send an E-mail email@example.com just turn up on the night at 7pm!
Contemporary Prints from the V&A
The Herbert Art Gallery & Museum is the first venue to host a brand new touring exhibition from the Victoria and Albert Museum, London – Street Art: Contemporary Prints from the V&A. Street art is a diverse, constantly evolving art form, one that moves across the derelict buildings, bus shelters and hoardings of cities around the world. Its roots lie in history, echoing cave paintings and stencilled slogans and images in political campaigning.
The exhibition showcases the work of some of the biggest artists in the street art community such as Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Sickboy, Pure Evil and D*Face.
The Herbert has also commissioned six emerging artists on the UK street scene to decorate its white walls. Fresh Paint will contain brand new work from Pahnl, SPQR, Lucy McLauchlan, Ben Slow, AsOne and Newso.
To explore another aspect of the street art scene, the Herbert will be showcasing new aerosol art from Birmingham based graffiti artist Mohammed Ali. Ali calls his art, AerosolArabic, a unique fusion of urban graffiti art with traditional Arabic Islamic calligraphy.
Touring exhibition from the V&A.
See the film and question the director. Part of the Street Art season
Whole Train’s edgy editing, pulsating soundtrack and exploration of the secret universe of the graffiti scene make it a film experience not to be missed. The four protagonists observe the hierarchies, values, rules and codes of this rarely documented scene. But as another crew appears on the scene, the four feel challenged and a creative battle ensues. The director will be available after the performance in person or via Skype to answer questions about how he made the film and its content!
Spaces are limited, booking is advised. Please call 024 7683 2386 to book your place.