All posts tagged: Sixe Paredes

MEXPANIA II Unveils in  Penelles, Spain

MEXPANIA II Unveils in Penelles, Spain

A few weeks after the completion of Mexapania Phase I in Queretaro, Mexico (MARUM Presents “MEXPANIA” and Miscegenation in Querétaro) the team from Mexico traveled to Spain in September to create an equally historic and culturally significant mural in the municipality of Penelles, in the heart of Catalonia.

Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)

In a town with a stultifying 112 murals and only 400 inhabitants, you already know that your work will be judged by experts – since everyone is looking and communing with multiple murals in the course of one day all over their city. This unusual urban occurrence is thanks to the Gar Gar Festival which has invited local and international artists for six years under the curatorship of the duo Binomic, formed by Maria del Mar López and Jordi Solana.

Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)

For the MEXPANIA installation, the artists Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz all joined ranks to symbolically relocate a mosaic painted on Pino Suárez street in Mexico City – itself a reproduction of an original work made by Juan Correa in the 17th century. Joining languages, histories, and iconography, this unique enterprise could have ended in disaster, yet here presents a unified composition that speaks with poetry and authority.

Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)

To appreciate the work completely, we asked curators Arcadi Poch and Édgar Sánchez to describe it for BSA readers.

“The two main characters are Moctezuma and Hernán Cortés, who have been transformed into two symmetrical doors, crowned by two divided suns. The floor of the scene is transformed into a map that collects a series of migratory paths through the history of humanity. Two surrendered horses fall on the map, followed by two eagles, meant to represent the fall of the symbols related to all the warlike and racist conflicts that occurred 500 years ago. The play speaks to the public about the richness of the past to inspire us to build a reunion and hence a future of greater integration.”

Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)
Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)
Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)
Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)
Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)
Mexpania II. Paola Delfín, Sixe Paredes, Pilar Cárdenas AKA Fusca and Daniel Muñoz. Penelles, Spain. October 2021. (photo courtesy of Nueve Arte Urbano)
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MARUM Presents “MEXPANIA” and Miscegenation in Querétaro

MARUM Presents “MEXPANIA” and Miscegenation in Querétaro

Édgar Sánchez and Arcadi Poch may not simply be curators of the new initiative called Mexpania that merges the cultures of Mexico and Spain. They are social scientists, anthropologists, historians, and some may say, alchemists. With the inaugural installations of this auspicious project primarily created inside the entrance and with only 4 national/international artists, you may be curious how these foundational works will influence future curatorial choices for this ever-growing museum dedicated to urban art, or arte urbano.

The Museo de Arte Urbano de México (MARUM) has been steadily and organically evolving these last ten years into a bonified attraction in the center of Querétaro thanks to the existing remarkable architecture and the driving force of the visionary Sánchez. Now with a partnership focused on the 500-year history of the Spanish migration to ancient Mexico, the opportunities to visually capture and illustrate the modern identity of a common culture must be daunting, but they have begun.

“We are the fruit of migration and miscegenation, of love and conflict that led to the mixing of our blood,” say the authors of Mexpania’s manifesto. “From that union was born an uncountable multitude of identities, ways of being, thinking, and believing.”

Daniel Muñoz

As an inaugural set of events and art-making, Mexpania presents what can only be considered an initial attempt to draw upon those themes and present an opening salvo. A calculated project to establish this entrance to the formalized museum, one that proposes to document and celebrate the movement of monumental art through streets and cities. The selections are a deliberate mixture of styles, histories, and identities that confront our ability to parse differences and similarities and emerge with one unique voice.

“The feeling is like entering a contemporary temple, which transports you to a sacred place dedicated to the mestizo and migrant nature of humanity,” say the two curators of the freshly combined works on the MARUM campus, as they call it. “It has not been an easy task to generate what we understand as a single piece by making such different artistic languages ​​coexist and getting them to dialogue in harmony.” Just reviewing the 33 muralists on the exterior spaces of the campus gives one an opportunity to consider the richness of this locally grown, now globally expanded, multi-voiced culture.

Fusca

BSA is proud to be the first to present the new works in their new home and to welcome readers to regard these fresh murals in context inside an institution dedicated to urban art now rooting into the soil of one of the original forbears of the modern mural movement a century ago, Mexico. In a city visited on the streets by modern street art internationalists like ROA, Stinkfish, Jaz, Elian, Sens, Sego, Alexis Dias, Entes, Enter, Ever Siempre, and others – this too is the land that gave birth to the great muralists Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, David Alfaro Siqueiros, Rufino Tamayo, Aurora Reyes Flores, Elena Huerta Muzquiz, and Rina Lazo.

Sixeart

“Inside the venue, directly to the left, we see the introductory text to the project, calligraphed by the hand of the Mexican artist Jassiel Rivera and written by the two curators. Above the text, in the large circular niche, there is a joint work by four artists. It is a large X that represents Mexpania and defines the four elements of the whole being.”

Text executed on wall by Jassiel Rivera. Authors: Édgar Sánchez and Arcadi Poch. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)

“Our ancestors traveled the world and in different eras or by different routes, they arrived in what we now call Mexico. … Mexpania seeks to respect and question these identities, to propose cultural freedom as a path to urban peace. While observing human chaos, this work raises the banner of the dynamic beauty of our cultures. We believe that there is no absolute truth or a pure lineage and that the charm of life is born of our differences. 500 years after the first Spanish migration to ancient Mexico, we are privileged to explore the cultures that bequeathed us, create our own identities, and lift each other up toward a future of cultural freedom.” – Édgar Sánchez and Arcadi Poch. Curators.

Sixe. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)

SIXE

“Sixe, an artist of Catalan origin, occupies the two walls corresponding to the main entrances, the entrance, and the exit, with a numerical representation that occupies the entire surface. The enormous network in black and red is a symbolic and abstract representation of the data and events, loves and hates, pains, and hopes that emerged as a result of the great encounter between the multiple cultures of both continents. It is a contemporary codex, an abstract framework, in which the symbols of death are represented by skulls, the cross of the Catholic religion imposed by the Spanish, and other symbols that represent the balance of the cosmos, the new sun, and the eclipse of the civilization of ancient Mexico. We can also observe the gold coins that Daniel Muñoz incorporates in Sixe’s work, generating a dialogue between these two works.”

Sixe. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)
Daniel Muñoz. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)

Daniel Muñoz

“On the front side and on the right we find the wall by Daniel Muñoz, a conceptual work with a great load of social reflection and critical thinking. Daniel talks about the power of money around domination and how it is able to make our cultures invisible. The large coin that presides over his work seems to cover the American continent and around the great circle, there are representations of the globe seen from different perspectives, creating a cartography of money. Behind the plaque that commemorates the inauguration of this space, and that contains an extract from the Florentine Codex, we observe a group of invisible indigenous women. Using these and other symbols, Daniel creates a representation of money as a motivation towards domination, but reinterprets its value with the phrase he writes around the central coin of the mural: ‘The Earth Will Return to Those Who Work It With Their Hands.’ “

Paola Delfin. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)

Paola Delfin

“Directly in front of the work of Fusca, appears, in black and white, the work of Paola Delfin. Mictlantecuhtli, the lord of the underworld, presides, radiant over a chaotic swarm of horses, and from them emerge, on the flanks, two mestizo identities. This deity representing death reigned over the underworld through which the dead traveled. It should be mentioned that despite the difficulties that lie in the Mictlan, this was not hell but a challenge that had to be faced after passing away if one wanted to reach the palace that is found after overcoming the difficult journey. The symbols embodied in this piece seem to recognize the enormous pains and sorrows of the past as strengthening challenges, which can give us fortitude and inspire us to live with good conscience.”

Paola Delfin & Daniel Muñoz. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)
Paola Delfin & Daniel Muñoz. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)
Fusca. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)

Fusca

On the back wall to the left, Fusca uses timeless symbols to express subtleties behind the way we think. In moonlight-like colors, we see a representation of Coatlicue, the archetypal maternal deity of ancient Mexico, who as the legend tells us, gives birth to Huitzilopochtli, the cultural leader of the Mexica, who we still see on the Mexican national shield, represented by an eagle. This figure, who could be interpreted as the mother of Mexico, is intervened in such a way that an equine head instead of a serpentine one emerges from her neck. In this way, the deity and the horse are united in a single, mestizo figure. The piece expresses the emotion of living the fusion between different identities. These understandings of who we are can weaken or strengthen us. How can we better understand the past that created us to empower and liberate us? To build our own way of describing ourselves, to strengthen life in our future and that of our descendants?

Fusca. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)
Fusca, Sixe and, Paola Delfin. MEXPANIA. NueveArteUrbano. MARUM. Queretaro, Mexico. (photo © NueveArteUrbano)
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“Titanes” at Work; New Murals and Social Inclusion in Don Quixote’s Land

“Titanes” at Work; New Murals and Social Inclusion in Don Quixote’s Land


“Every man is the son of his own works” ~ Miguel de Cervantes.


The greatest writer in the Spanish language was inspired by the character of this region and its arid but fertile elevated plateau when creating his greatest work Don Quixote, a true titan of historical literature and one of the world’s most translated books after the Bible.

His central character is a delusional would-be knight who calls himself The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha. His absurdist but imaginative self-regard is echoed in the sheer scale of the grand new Titanes (Titan) mural project. Given the camaraderie among artists and organizers here you may say that the heart of Titanes is more likely aligned with the earthy wit of his sidekick Sancho Panza.

Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Naturally when these characters are intermingled by an imaginative multi-disciplinary artist like Okuda San Miguel you are not surprised to see the image of movie director Pedro Almodovar co-starring along with Quixote; Okuda’s silo is seated in the filmmaker’s town of Calzada de Calatrava and Almodovar’s richly drawn characters have captured a generation of Spaniards happily. As a rainbow splits the storm clouded sky behind him, it’s precisely this painters intuitive alchemy of reality and fiction that may shake a viewers’ conscience while entertaining them, revealing Titanes as an enormous vehicle of communication.

Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

“The past and present are seen through my geometric and surrealist filters,” says Okuda, who is a principle architect of this audacious public mural project in La Mancha. In an era of perplexing social, political, and economic upheavals, it is comforting to see modern artists take on the messages of the classics, reinterpreting and re-presenting them.

Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

15 or so more murals on silos are on the way here from top talents before the year is complete. The societal outreach is ground-breaking in its own way with an uncommon integration and engagement with the neighboring communities.

“It’s an interesting story,” says photographer Martha Cooper, who shares her images with BSA readers today. “Okuda is working with organizations who help people with disabilities like autism and Down Syndrome. The part of the mural at the base of each one of the silos was painted by a number of these participants,” she says. “And they all seemed to be having a great time.”

Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Startlingly original and indelibly context-specific, Titanes is a mural/public art project that resides at the intersection of social responsibility and community participation. Organizers say that the goal is not only to bring a roster of well-respected artists here to paint but to be completely inclusive of societal members who aren’t typically thought of as artists.

Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

From now until October, a number of artists from the urban art scene will be transforming silos into art all across this region, including Bicicleta sem Freio, Daniel Muñoz, Demsky J., Equipo Plástico (comprised of Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4814 and Sixe Paredes), Fintan Magee, Hell’O, Smithe, Nychos, Ricardo Cavolo and Spok Brillor. In an unprecedented program of social inclusion through public art, 450 members of the Laborvalía association will also be working alongside the artists on various creative activities.

Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Already the program has proven life-changing in many ways, say participants, as perspectives and relationships are evolving during the initial painting program. “Okuda worked with one boy with autism while painting his mural,” Martha tells us. “He began to speak and interact after starting to paint – much to his parents’ delight. This part of the project gave it more weight than just the usual “artists-painting-walls” event.”

Organizers say that they hope Titanes will be an epic project that will go down in history as one of the world’s biggest events to promote social inclusion. At its core are Okuda’s own multi-faceted art agency called Ink and Movement, the Laborvalía organization, the Provincial Government of Ciudad Real, and a number of other municipalities and civic and tourism-related fields who are supporting the art and its message throughout society.

Laborvalía says in its mission statement that its principal goal is to promote the integration of people with disabilities in society and the workplace.

Titanes looks like it is the perfect project to make a big impression.

Hell’O, Okuda collaborates with Hell’O and a client from Laborvalía organization helps the artists with the mural. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Hell’O Our idea was to mix abstract shapes and figurative elements in a colorful environment. We enjoy playing with the balance between different shapes and finding a homogeneous composition. We wanted to give it an optimistic, pop, fresh touch, something that speaks to everyone

Hell’O and Okuda. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Hell’O. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Hell’O. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Hell’O. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Hell’O. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Bicicleta sem Freio “Os Gigantes de la Mancha” (The Giants of La Mancha) represents the power of creativity and imagination and its indispensable role in the ability of human beings to make sense of the world and others, especially among children and people with disabilities.

Bicicleta sem Freio. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Bicicleta sem Freio and clients from Laborvalía organization help the artist with the mural. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Bicicleta sem Freio and clients from Laborvalía organization help the artist with the mural. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Bicicleta sem Freio. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Bicicleta sem Freio. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Bicicleta sem Freio. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Daniel Muñoz & Spok Brillor:

There are a number of concepts behind our intervention. First, it represents 15 years of working together as artists and friends: each medal symbolizes a story from some of the projects we’ve worked on in recent years.

It also reaffirms the building from an architectural standpoint: “decoration” in the sense of an award or honor and not just ornamentation. For us, it’s important to reaffirm the object in itself and not its political history. Finally, there’s an irony in the use of gold and its contrast with bread, a basic product produced by the silo and one that, in reality, was always represented as luminary and powerful in the imaginary of the 20th century.

Daniel Munoz & Spok Brillor. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Daniel Munoz & Spok Brillor. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Daniel Munoz & Spok Brillor. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Daniel Munoz & Spok Brillor. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Daniel Munoz & Spok Brillor. (Equipo Plastico on the right) “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Equipo Plástico (Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4818 and Sixe Paredes)

“Meseta” (Plateau) is a homage to the countryside, to the intractable space surrounding these silos. The tones and patterns of the surrounding areas, their textures and shades, cover every centimetre of the wall like a blanket, giving the building a round, almost sculpted look. Ignoring the limits of the building and symbolically camouflaging it in its environment accentuates its current invisibility after years of neglect and helps lighten the weight of its history.

Equipo Plastico (Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4818 and Sixe Paredes). “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Equipo Plastico (Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4818 and Sixe Paredes). “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Equipo Plastico (Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4818 and Sixe Paredes). “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Equipo Plastico (Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4818 and Sixe Paredes). “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Equipo Plastico (Eltono, Nuria Mora, Nano4818 and Sixe Paredes). “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Demsky & Smithe

In “Parábolas del Pensamiento” (Parabolas of Thought), we have unified our style, based on the phases of the brain for creation and thinking: preparation, incubation, illumination and verification.

Demsky & Smithe. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Demsky & Smithe. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Demsky & Smithe. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Demsky & Smithe. “Titanes” Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Windmills at Campo de Criptana. Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. It is at the windmills that Quixote’s famous adventures begin, starting with his attack on the windmills, because he believes that they are ferocious giants. (photo © Martha Cooper)
An artist’s interpretation of Don Quixote & Sancho Panza. Ciudad Real, Spain. April 2019. (photo © Martha Cooper)
Okuda presented Ms. Cooper with a portrait of her.
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BSA Images Of The Week: 03.17.19

BSA Images Of The Week: 03.17.19

Patti Smith begins the roll call for BSA Images of the Week in this portrait by Huetek. The punk term is loosely tossed around today, but it only applies to a certain number of people truthfully. In so many ways she is one. But she is also an author, poet, activist, and champion of the people – who she says have the power.

So here’s our weekly interview with the street, this time featuring Adam Fu, Bella Phame, BK Foxx, Bobo, Deih XLF, Exist, Huetek, Isaac Cordal, Koralie, Koz Dos, Sixe Paredes, Smells, SoSa, UFO 907, Velvet, WW Crudo, and Zoer.

Huetek pays tribute to Patti Smith for East Village Walls. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
BK Foxx for East Village Walls. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
BK Foxx creates this portrait of American Rapper MacMiller, who passed away so young last September –for JMZ Walls. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
UFO907 . Smells (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Deih XLF for Points de Vue in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Deih XLF for Points de Vue in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Zoer and Velvet in Bilbao, Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
SoSa (photo © Jaime Rojo)
“Yo can I get a drag off your Costco membership?” Bobo (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Isaac Cordal for Points de Vue in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Isaac Cordal for Points de Vue in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Bella Phame for JMZ Walls. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Exist in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Exist in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Adam Fu (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Unidentified artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Sixe Paredes in Bilbao, Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
WW Crudo and some Keith Haring stickers? (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Koz Dos for Points de Vue in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
A digital “propaganda” advertisement telling people in Madrid the cost of buffing graffiti in the city… (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Koralie for Points de Vue in Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
We Love You! Reads this political gate written in Basque to remind the people of Bilbao of the plight of political prisoners in Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Meanwhile in Bayonne, France an old political mural informs the public about the political prisoners who were detained and disappeared during the Basque Separatist confrontation with the Federal Government of Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Untitled. Sky landscape in Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
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The Weeknd: Fer Alcala in Cardedeu, Granollers and Baladona, Catalunya, Spain.

The Weeknd: Fer Alcala in Cardedeu, Granollers and Baladona, Catalunya, Spain.

Today we take a random walk around some of the most interesting street art in the metropolitan area of Barcelona with photographer and fervent observer of the scene, Fer Alcala, who shares with BSA readers about his own participation in the scene as a documentarian and vibrant part of the street ecosystem. An insatiable chaser of Street Art and murals, Fer doesn’t let a recent back operation keep him down for long and soon you are off discovering more in Granollers, Cardedeu, and who knows where else!


– by Fer Alcala

2017 was a weird year for me. It’s been more than 6 months that I’m trying to learn how to live in pain as I have a problem in my backbone which is healing as a Work In Process (WIP). At the same time, I’ve had the chance of collaborating with lots of artists, taking part in very interesting projects and shooting tons of photos. However it has not always been easy for me to find the motivation and the energy to go out there and hit the streets.

Roc Blackblock. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Apart from all this, you know how it works; There’s that spark, that unavoidable feeling that pushes you to do what you love to do despite everything else. So, this is what happened to me some weeks ago while being alone at home: I HAD to go for a walk, yes or yes. So, I did.

I had the need to go to Badalona and check some of the latest pieces of Spogo out. Spogo’s work is familiar to the BSA readers:  One of the finest abstract artists in the country, Spogo opens walls in his hometown and gives the chance to other artists to paint in his playground, developing a homeland legacy that is appreciated by neighbors, pedestrians and fellow artists. In these times when street art and gentrification are becoming almost synonymous, Spogo’s personal effort contributes to beautify the city through collabs with Elbi Elem, Tayone, Ángel Toren, Lost Optics, Kazzius or Nico Barrios & Toni Cuatrero.

Aryz . Gurtel. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

In the meanwhile, it’s nice to find a big wall by H101 by chance, almost feeling it as a tribute to the defunct Sixe wall in the opposite side of the highway which was replaced by some useless gardening ad. It was also a great pleasure to find ‘Inocente II’, the great mural by Mohamed Lghacham and Iván Floro, two friends that hadn’t painted together in 6 years and whose figurative skills are reaching mastership levels.

So, in order to keep on feeding my hunger for art, I decided to visit the always interesting city of Granollers with about 60,000 inhabitants which is 40 minutes away from Barcelona by train, after seeing online what Velvet and Zoer had created for ‘Murs que parlen (Walls that speak)’. Murs que parlen is a project promoted by Granollers’ town hall, a project which they say is seeking to give life and color to some medium and large scale walls of the city. The result of the work of the French artistic duo, who were advised by Aryz on the occasion, is one of my personal faves in Catalunya this year.

Aryz . San . Zoer. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

I love how Zoer has explained the whole process in his IG account:

‘One month ago, Velvet and me started painting this mural in Granollers / Catalunya. Relating an artistic action to its close environment and context is a big question as: Does the mural/ public space/ art have to make a clear connection with its time or to a special meaning? The population of Catalunya expressed recently its will of autonomy and most generally the possibility of reorganizing the society around a strong regional and cultural defense. As foreigners, we can only watch and interpret the information from a certain distance.

The Can Bassa district in Granollers is a very quiet district, let’s say mostly Castillan, or inhabited by people from all of the country. We were invited to take a look at the academic system here, by giving a class to young art students and by visiting the primary school though the high school. The focus is set on the personal development and awakening in creative fields, developing an atmosphere of exchange and curiosity.

Aryz . San . Zoer. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

In a dance class, where children were training, we found dozens of drum sticks in a blue plastic basin. Besides that we had the chance to meet Toni Cumella and to visit his splendid ceramic factory. Their ceramics are designed for architecture mainly, where a million single pieces can shape an ensemble, become a pattern, a second skin to a concrete structure.

Well known for having designed this sophisticated ceiling ceramic map for the Santa Caterina market in Barcelona, they worked as well with Renzo Piano on the Centro Botin, creating a sensational floating pattern from thousands of ceramic disks modeling the facade and reflecting the light. During the inauguration, musicians were playing percussion using the ceramic facade as a giant drum with thousands of pads’.

Aryz . San . Zoer. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

It’s great to see how interacting with the locals and taking into account the neighbors’ participation is becoming so important and giving meaning to the artist’s work, even becoming a norm in several projects all over the world.

My next stop was another Murs que parlen wall. It’s strange because almost no one out there has taken pics of this colossal Sixe Paredes piece. I tried to shoot it from the courtyard of the school, but the place was closed and nobody was working that day. To know more about this beautiful work, please check this nice documentary that a local TV filmed for the occasion.

Sixe Paredes. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

It has been approximately four years since I had the chance to visit Roca Umbert. This cultural facility keeps some almost hidden gems by Aryz, Zoer, and Daniel Muñoz ‘SAN’ and Roc Blackblock, among others. Born as a tribute to Ferrer i Guardia and the modern school, with 250 students taking part in the process, this is what Roc said about it on his FB page at that time: ‘We arrived to the conclusion that education, knowledge and wisdom are the real superpowers that allow us to face all the challenges with success’.

One of the things that I love about Granollers is that it has everything: big walls, random ones all over the city, abandoned factories…and the ditch. Home of a superb, but now buffed old smoking bird by Aryz, this never ending urban canvas offers tons of great art by some of the biggest and more interesting names in da house: Aryz, Rostro, Cinta Vidal and Peeta, Japon, Treze … this list could go on forever, so here you have an small selection of what you can find down there. And, please, be careful if you decide to cross the river.

Velvet. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

As I was on fire, I decided to take the train and go to Cardedeu. This almost 13 km2 village is a creative gold mine. Aryz’s and Cinta Vidal’s homeplace, Cardedeu’s outskirts gives shelter to one of the most admired abandoned factories in the biz: Ofidirect. I’ve been here several times with lots of different friends, artists and colleagues and everybody loves the place.

It was the first time that I was there alone and I have to say that I was almost overwhelmed by the silence and the majesty of this concrete and brick space. Being some kind of a private playground for the MixedMedia Crew and other artists and graffiti writers, Ofidirect is still alive preserving its urban decay beauty and charm. It was funny for me to see how Zoer, Velvet and Aryz had got some fun in there apart from the big Wall in Granollers.

Zoer. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

After a 40 minutes walk to go back to Cardedeu, some beer, and a train and back to Barcelona, I was at home editing pics and speaking with friend artist @elbielem. She asks me about an Aryz mural in Cardedeu. ??? I had no clue about what she was talking and Aryz painting in his hometown on kind of a big wall? He’s one of my favorite artists and I had been there for hours and I haven’t got any f*cking idea about it? Well: sh*t happens. Best street art hunter (hate this title…) ever.

I went back to Cardedeu the next day very soon in the morning, but that, my friends, is a different story

Velvet . Aryz . Gurtel . Zoer. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Treze. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Los Ratos. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Sergi Marqués. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

KIKX. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Aryz. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Japon VLOK. Ofidirect/Cardedeu, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Aryz. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Rostro. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Aryz . Rostro. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Cinta Vidal . Peeta. Granollers, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Mohamed Lghacham . Iván Floro. “Inocente II” Baladona, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

‘This wall is the second part of another one that I painted two years ago about the same issue,” says artist Mohamed Lghacham who painted this wall with assistance of Iván Floro.

“Its main character is a friend of mine who was born on December 28th which is the ‘Santos Inocentes’ day in Spain (note: this is the equivalent of the April’s fool day in the States). Basically, it consists on playing little jokes on your friends and relatives. When my friend was a little kid and it was his birthday his classmates didn’t trust him, thinking that he was just kidding. There’s not a big concept behind the piece: it’s just something anecdotal that seems funny to me.

The idea about painting that mural came from Badiu Jove Badalona as one of the activities of Conect’Art which is an art fair for young creators that takes place in the city.” Lghacham says he would like to thank his assistant Floro.  “Everything went great and I guess that we will work together often in the near future.”

Spogo . Nico Barrios . Tony Cuatreros. Baladona, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

Spogo . Elbi Elem. Baladona, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)

H101. Baladona, Spain. December 2017. (photo © Fer Alcalá)


Instagram handles:

Sixe @sixeparedes, Spogo @spogo15, Elbi Elem @elbielem , Tayone @tayone.abz , Ángel Toren @angeltoren , Lost Optics @lostoptics, Kazzius @kaz.zius or Nico Barrios @mrnobodysmind ,Toni Cuatrero @tonicuatrero, H101 @h1_01, Mohamed Lghacham @oiterone, Iván Floro @van_vuu, Velvet @velvetcsx, Zoer @zoerism, Aryz @mr_aryz, Daniel Muñoz ‘SAN’ @danielmunoz_san, Rostro @rostrovalseca , Cinta Vidal @cinta_vidal & Peeta @peeta_ead , Japon @japonvlok , Treze @acidcollapse, Peeta @peeta_ead , Japon @japonvlok , Treze @acidcollapse

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BSA “Images Of The Year” for 2017 (VIDEO)

BSA “Images Of The Year” for 2017 (VIDEO)

Of the thousands of images he took this year in places like New York, Berlin, Scotland, Hong Kong, Sweden, French Polynesia, Barcelona, and Mexico City, photographer Jaime Rojo found that Street Art and graffiti are more alive than every before. From aerosol to brush to wheat-paste to sculpture and installations, the individual acts of art on the street can be uniquely powerful – even if you don’t personally know where or who it is coming from. As you look at the faces and expressions it is significant to see a sense of unrest, anger, fear. We also see hope and determination.

Every Sunday on BrooklynStreetArt.com, we present “Images Of The Week”, our weekly interview with the street. Primarily New York based, BSA interviewed, shot, and displayed images from Street Artists from more than 100 cities over the last year, making the site a truly global resource for artists, fans, collectors, gallerists, museums, curators, academics, and others in the creative ecosystem. We are proud of the help we have given and thankful to the community for what you give back to us and we hope you enjoy this collection – some of the best from 2017.

Brooklyn Street Art 2017 Images of the Year by Jaime Rojo includes the following artists;

Artists included in the video are: Suitswon, Curiot, Okuda, Astro, Sixe Paredes, Felipe Pantone, Hot Tea, Add Fuel, Hosh, Miss Van, Paola Delfin, Pantonio, Base23, R1, Jaune, Revok, Nick Walker, 1UP Crew, SotenOne, Phat1, Rime MSK, Martin Whatson, Alanis, Smells, UFO907, Kai, Tuts, Rambo, Martha Cooper, Lee Quinoes, Buster, Adam Fujita, Dirty Bandits, American Puppet, Disordered, Watchavato, Shepard Fairey, David Kramer, Yoko Ono, Dave The Chimp, Icy & Sot, Damien Mitchell, Molly Crabapple, Jerkface, Isaac Cordal, SacSix, Raf Urban, ATM Street Art, Stray Ones, Sony Sundancer, ROA, Telmo & Miel, Alexis Diaz, Space Invader, Nasca, BK Foxx, BordaloII, The Yok & Sheryo, Arty & Chikle, Daniel Buchsbaum, RIS Crew, Pichi & Avo, Lonac, Size Two, Cleon Peterson, Miquel Wert, Pyramid Oracle, Axe Colours, Swoon, Outings Project, Various & Gould, Alina Kiliwa, Tatiana Fazalalizadeh, Herakut, Jamal Shabaz, Seth, Vhils, KWets1, FinDac, Vinz Feel Free, Milamores & El Flaco, Alice Pasquini, Os Gemeos, Pixel Pancho, Kano Kid, Gutti Barrios, 3 x 3 x 3, Anonymouse, NeSpoon, Trashbird, M-city, ZoerOne, James Bullowgh, and 2501.

 

Cover image of Suits Won piece with Manhattan in the background, photo by Jaime Rojo.

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BSA en Barcelona: Miss Van, La Escocesa, and Reskate!  Dispatch 1

BSA en Barcelona: Miss Van, La Escocesa, and Reskate! Dispatch 1

This week BSA is in Barcelona to participate in the Contorno Urbano competition to select an artist for a new community mural and residency in the municipality of Sant Feliu de Llobregat – and of course to see the famed Barcelona Street Art scene as it continues to evolve.


Fresh off the plane from New York at 7 am, BSA hit the streets with the talented Street Art photographer Fer Alcalá and the director of Fundacion Contorno Urbana, Esteban Marin – both amazing and generous hosts.

Miss Van (photo © Jaime Rojo)

We covered a lot of terrain in this pretty, clean and relatively quiet European city (Catalonian referendum marches last month not withstanding) and there is a wide variety of sanctioned and unsanctioned art on the streets even today, years after the city began cracking down on an organic Street Art scene that flourished here in the mid 2000s.

You’ll find a lot of local Street Artists here as well as a few international names who are passing through, or who have settled here and have studios in addition to a street practice.

Yo también ! A very early Escif at La Escocesa. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

For lunch you may want to check out the regional special dishes like Escudella d’Olla , a hearty Catalan stew with poached meats and vegetables, or fideuà, a noodle dish that locals may prefer to paella – made with seafood like cuttlefish, monkfish, prawns all cloaked in alioli, a thick garlic and olive oil sauce.

Afterwards you can check out La Escocesa, a self-managed artistic production center that focuses on the visual arts with the public in mind. The artist spaces, performance spaces, gallery spaces – a real hothouse of invention and an art factory on the site of a former textile factory  that reminds you of what artist communities can be like when the right elements are present and in balance.

Escif at the wonderfully raw The Hangar.(photo © Jaime Rojo)

A number of artists have residencies here at the moment, including muralists Mina Hamada and Zosen, who we just saw in Brooklyn at the Vinz Feel Free “Innocence” show while they were in town to paint a huge wall in Jersey City – it is a small world.

Unfortunately in two years La Escocesa will be demolished to make room for affordable housing – it’s owned by the city council which purchased it from the banks.

Reskate (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Reskate (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Also if you come here you’ll want to check out a new mural by Reskate, an artistic collective formed by Maria López and Javier de Riba, who have a workshop and studio in the Sants district of Barcelona.

With an illustrative style full of life, you can see influences from popular culture, graphic design, pop and traditional sign-painting. Our hosts tell us they often paint referencing social themes – and they certainly are loved here. Here’s a shot of our little touring group at one point. See you all tomorrow!

Miquel Wert. A “secret” spot curated by Jiser. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A Brooklyn King in Barcelona. Biggie Smalls by Axe Colours (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Axe Colours goes GOT. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“Costa Rican artist is still a revolutionary act!” Akore (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Rice (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

1UP (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Sixe Paredes (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Fàbriques de Creació. La Escocesa from Barcelona Cultura on Vimeo.

 

For more about Jiser: www.jiser.org

For more about The Hangar: www.hangar.org/es

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“Nau Bostik” Invigorates La Sagrera District in Barcelona

“Nau Bostik” Invigorates La Sagrera District in Barcelona

Portraits, characters, surrealistic scenes and a range of illustration styles all reigned at the Nau Bostik festival in the La Sagrera neighborhood of Barcelona this summer. Organizing the painted component of the festival were folks from the Open Walls Conference and Difusor in a collaborative program to bring a new cultural infusion of life to this former industrial center.

Ralf Urban (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

These walls are what stand long after the film festival, craft beer festival, conference discussions, food trucks, children’s dance program, photography exhibition and musical performances leave. Contrary to the image of Street Art and graffiti in the margins of society, in the case of these twenty or so muralists from a variety of backgrounds, painting in the public sphere is an integral part of the programming of a communities future, rather than a sign of its degradation.

We’re pleased that photographer Lluis Olive Bulbena shares some of the images he captured at Bostik Murals this summer with BSA readers.

BToy (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

BToy (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

El Rughy (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Simon Vazquez (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Twee Muizen (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Ox Alien (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

SheOne (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

SheOne (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Manu Manu (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Fau Art (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Fau Art (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

David Petroni (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Syrup (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

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“Urvanity” Fair Opens in Madrid, 68 Artists + Galleries + Walls + Panels

“Urvanity” Fair Opens in Madrid, 68 Artists + Galleries + Walls + Panels

You may not realize upon first glance through the series of modular white walled temporary gallery rooms, but this fine art on display all has origins in street practice.

Over the past long weekend Madrid’s Urvanity fair at The Palacio Neptuno showcased a sweeping cross-selection of crisply framed names – many of which are being identified as Street Artists en route to “Contemporary Artists”.

Banksy. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Hung at eye level, carefully spaced, and illuminated under tracked lighting, the studio work of nearly 70 Graffiti/Street/Urban artists went on this weekend in one of the first fairs dedicated entirely to this evermore emerging category.

With fresh works from artists like JonOne, Fin DAC, Pixelpancho, Miss Van, Jef Aérosol, Sixe Art, L Atlas, Stikki Peaches, and Ben Eine, it is a mostly Eurocentric roster of galleries you’ve come to know in the last decade or so from places like Amsterdam, Paris, Milan, Zurich, London, among others, and of course Madrid. Under the direction of Sergio Sancho, an advertising professional who has worked with major global brands, the fair calls the works on display New Contemporary Art and the program includes a companion mural campaign in Madrid streets featuring Eine, Jason Woodside, L’Atlas, PREF, MESA and Mohammed Lghacham.

Laurence Vallières. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

While receiving increasing support from serious press, museums, auctions, and festivals over the last decade and a half, it has been a great challenge for both commercial/social and historical/academic scholarship to agree on a moniker for these combined movements and makers – one that fairly encompasses the myriad motivations, styles of expression and intersecting cultures that have evolved from a half century of art on the streets.

Pro 176 . L’Atlas. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

With the inauguration of the Urvanity Mahou Talks Program during the fair, featuring again the artist Ben Eine and cultural curator Cedar Lewisohn, this topic and many more that continue to be raised can be examined and discussed in meaningful ways. At BSA we are finding that our participation in these panels, presentations, and discussions as well as being in the audience has furthered our understanding and appreciation for this natural and growing desire of scholarship.

The Urvanity program of conferences, debates and presentations here collect artists, curators and cultural managers with these purposes in mind and naturally will help collectors and fans contemplate these artists at the fair and better appreciate the bridge between the street and the fine art presented here. A strong first showing, you can expect to see Urvanity back again next year.

An outdoor mural from the Urvanity Instagram page. “We are excited to be able to be painting incredible murals in #Madrid. This one is by @oiterone on Calle de la Cebada!”

Miss Van . Peca. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Tilt . Moses & Taps. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Nano4814. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Vermibus . Jordan Seiler . OX. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Sixe Paredes . Suso33 Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

D*Face . Jason Woodside . Felipe Pantone . Pref . Okuda. Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Urvanity 2017. Madrid, Spain. February 2017. (photo © Alfonso Herranz)

Sergio Sancho and the Urvanity team outside the inaugural exhibition Palacio Neptuno.
Check out their Instagram here.

For more information please visit:

URVANITY
Palacio de Neptuno
Calle de Cervantes, 42. Madrid
From February 23rd 26th, 2017
www.urvanity art.com

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Sixe Paredes: Future-Folk Geometry In Barcelona

Sixe Paredes: Future-Folk Geometry In Barcelona

The Future-Folk Geometrist named Sixe Paredes is in Madrid at Palacio Neptuno this weekend for the Urvanity commercial art fair but today we have a look at a recent large scale pared he painted for the Open Walls Conference in Barcelona recently.

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Even at this massive scale there is a handmade warmth recalling traditional craft and the people of perhaps Central and South America; dissembling and abstracting its patterns and elements and re-stitching them in an open, inviting way.

Here we give BSA readers a peak at the process of making the mural with documentation by BSA collaborator Lluis Olive Bulbena:

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

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Exposing Politics and Scholarship at “Open Walls Conference 2016” Barcelona

Exposing Politics and Scholarship at “Open Walls Conference 2016” Barcelona

Screenings, workshops, and talks – and murals of course.

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Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

These are the markings of at least some of the increasingly serious Street Art / Urban Art festivals that have emerged in the last few years thanks to calls for genuine scholarship and the creation of academic frameworks to help us understand something that began as a grassroots form of expression in the mid and late 20th Century.

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Muretz. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

Open Walls Conference in Barcelona this year featured new public artworks by Dumar NovYork, Fasim, Muretz, Roc Blackblock, Sam3, Sheone, Sixe Paredes, and Syrup; a relatively small roster of artists compared to larger commercial festivals – and one that is heavily weighted toward local talents.

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Sixe Paredes. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

But as an artist, researcher and educator in the fields of graffiti and street art, Javier Abarca will tell you that this fourth edition of Open Walls Conference holds the “conference” aspect on center stage, with heated debates about the politics of art in public space – and private space for that matter.

This years’ debate had as its central argument the propriety of bringing Street Art into the exhibition space, how, and under what circumstances. Among the questions posed were whether it is ethical to bring urban art into the museum or whether the arts true nature is to live out its natural life wherever it has been painted illegally.

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From Left to right: Elena Gayo, Christian Omodeo, Jorge Rodriguez-Gerarda and Javier Abarca during the panel discussion at the Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Enrique Escandell)

For fans, collectors, curators and artists in the Street Art world, this will sound like a familiar debate in light of an exhibition this spring in Bologna, Italy that was controversial to some because it contained illegal works taken from an abandoned factory.

The “Banksy and Co.” exhibit sparked a revolt by the artist Blu, who made a splendid show of his own by destroying others of his public artworks and inspiring the support of kindred painters to assist him, with some even holding a counter exhibition.

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The audience at the panel discussion during the Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Enrique Escandell

Says Abarca, who moderated the debate, “This year’s focus shifted on the very contentious topic of the conservation of public art pieces produced without permission, resulting in an extremely intense three-hour discussion in a packed auditorium where two opposed visions on the topic were scrutinized.”

On panel were one of the exhibition’s curators Christian Omodeo, along with artist Jorge Rodríguez-Gerada, and Elena Gayo, whom Albarca calls, “a prominent Spanish restorer and head of a think tank that for the last two years has developed a set of ethical parameters for the conservation of street art pieces.”

We all benefit from examinations and cogitations such as these, and it is good to see a level of popular support to attend discussions, panels, and lectures that help shape and codify our understanding of such a widespread art movement/practice.

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Sheone. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

In addition the conference featured a publishing fair called “Unlock“, which was dedicated to graffiti and street art and gathered close to sixty publishers from Europe and America, a first for the field, say the organizers. Another first, they say, is the academic study of the British artist Banksy launched here in book form as Banksy: urban art in a material world, by Ulrich Blanché.

Finally the fair featured a lecture by British journalist Marcus Barnes, “who nearly went to jail last year for publishing a graffiti magazine,” says Abarca, as well as “a breathtaking reading of What Do One Million Ja Tags Signify? by Brooklyn artist and author Dumar NovYork.”

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Sheone. (CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE). Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

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Sam3. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

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Sam3. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

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Syrup. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

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Syrup. (CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE). Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

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Fasim. Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Fernando Alcalá)

 

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Dumar NovYork reads from his book “What Do One Million Ja Tags Signify” at Unlock during the Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Javier Abarca)

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Scenes from Unlock the first Street Art Publishing Art Fair as part of the Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Enrique Escandell)

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Scenes from Unlock the first Street Art Publishing Art Fair as part of the Open Walls Conference 2016. Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Enrique Escandell)

 


 

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!


 

This article is also published on The Huffington Post.
brooklyn-street-art-huffpost-740-open-walls-barcelona-2016-screen-shot-2016-11-23-at-3-23-28-pm
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Graffiti and the Everyday Utopias of the Street from Schacter & Co

Graffiti and the Everyday Utopias of the Street from Schacter & Co

Utopia, as you know, is unattainable.

Neither should one think that we are devolving into a Dystopian nightmare. Not just yet.

A new show at London’s Somerset House is examining the acts and results of so-called urban artists and their relationship to discussions about this imagined polarity.

We ask ourselves if graffiti and it’s variant unsanctioned public art cousins simply are a medium of messaging that runs outside of accepted pathways of delivery? Yes, and so much more.

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Lucas Dillon. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

One one hand some public servants, civic minders, and private real estate owners have their “hair on fire” moments when these actions/interventions/disruptions of the cityscape are portrayed as signs of the utter ruin of civilization. Concurrently, libertarians, anarchists and sundry romantics may present them as a form of self expression, even self empowerment; an act of claiming a voice in the public dialogue heretofore closed to certain members of society.

In the descriptive text for Somerset’s current series providing a full year of space for Utopian thinking, we learn that co-producers Somerset House, King’s College London and the Courtauld Institute of Art are marking the 500th anniversary of Utopia’s formal birth as a concept in writings by Thomas More. The reasoning presented says that because of his texts we are all equipped to imagine that a better world is possible and, thus knowing, “we are empowered to create it.”

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Lucas Dillon. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

Raphael Schacter and the arts organization A(by)P are presenting a portion of this discussion with their exhibit Venturing Beyond: Graffiti and the Everyday Utopias of the Street, just opened. Commissioning seventeen street artists for one’s show is in itself so rare and splendid as to be only in the realm of one’s imagination today. But here they are; new pieces and performances from a healthy spectrum of practitioners on the graffiti/Street Art scene like Shepard Fairey, Swoon, REVOK, Brad Downey, Horfée, and Eltono.

Schacter and company are “arguing against the traditionally-held belief of graffiti as a dystopian movement or ‘glorified vandalism’.” With installation works, in-house residencies, and a wide-ranging program of events that include workshops, talks, films, music and performances, no stone will be un-thrown in this wo/man-made island of inquiry and imagination.

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Petro. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

Say A(by)P, “Above all, graffiti and street art act as an alternative voice, whether it is loud and brazen or more subtle and difficult to decipher, which strive to challenge the well-worn systems of society – something which Thomas More’s seminal text also set out. All of the artists will uniquely interpret their ideas on these utopian foundations of graffiti.”

 Here are a small series of images from the organizers from Venturing Beyond: Graffiti and the Everyday Utopias of the Street.

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Petro. Detail. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

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Russell Maurice. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-fillippo-minelli-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Filippo Minnelli. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-les-freres-ripoulain-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Les Freres Ripoulain. Detail. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

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El Tono. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

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Antwan Horféé. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-misha-hollenbach-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Misha Hollenbach. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-sixe-paredes-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Sixe Paredes. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

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Saleo & Rizote. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-shepard-fairey-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Shepard Fairey. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-nano-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Nano. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

brooklyn-street-art-revok-russell-maurice-nano-filippo-minelli-approved-by-pablo-somerset-house-london-03-16-web

Revok, Russell Maurice, Nano and Filippo Minelli. Approved By Pablo. Somerset House. London. March 2016. (photo © courtesy of AbyP)

3 March – 2 May 2016
Daily 10.00-18.00 (last entry 17.15)
Terrace Rooms, South Wing
Free admission

 

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