All posts tagged: Stinkfish

“Street Art City” in the Middle of France

“Street Art City” in the Middle of France

Summertime spray-cations are as popular for the jet-setting aerosol explorer as much as your local graffiti and Street Artist. Grabbing your bicycle, taking a bus, or simply hiking with a backpack full of cans, many writers make a full day of it, or decide to camp out at the abandoned factory, hanging with friends and listening to music.

Aero (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)

For a photographer of Street Art and murals, its possibly just as much entertainment – just ask BSA contributor, Lluis Olive Bulbena. On vacation with his wife and grandkids between Lyon and Clemont Ferrant (about 250 km south of Paris) he discovered a compound filled with new paintings on the commune of lurcy-Lévis. Informally known as Street Art City, the project is the brainchild of Gilles Iniesta and features hundreds of works on facades out in the open and others in hidden locations – including many who have made the pilgrimage to leave their marks on the walls or inside the dilapidated rooms of Hotel 128 (more about the hotel tomorrow). .Thanks to some good crops of visiting artists this summer, it looks like rural France has a good selection of painting styles to choose from this season.

Aero (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Aero (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Street Art City (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
SimpleG 1 (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
SimpleG 1 (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Depose (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
BKFoxx . Zesoner (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
BKFoxx . Zesoner (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Atek (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Ted Nomad (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Ted Nomad (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Ted Nomad (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Caro Pepe (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Zesoner (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
CreyOne (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
CreyOne (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Oji . FVP (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Kelkin (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
More In Color (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
RTM ONE (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Stinkfish (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Soone (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Poncho . Garabato . Basto . Daco. MORNE (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
Street Art City (photo © Lluis Olive Bulbena)
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BSA Images Of The Week: 03.10.19

BSA Images Of The Week: 03.10.19

A paper published last autumn by HEC Paris and Columbia Business School finds that artists are more likely to be professionally successful if they network widely – and that their innate talent as an artist may have less to do with commercial success than many thought.

Unearthed by Artsy this week, the paper is ricocheting across social media with shock and dismay uttered by some artists who lament the hollowness of the modern graffiti/ Street Art/ Urban Art world, purporting to be distinct and above it all, yet posing in countless photos on their social pages with myriad peers and professionals and potential clients cheek-to-cheek.

It may be time that some hardcore Graffiti and Street Artists can shed some of the charades about how the globe turns, even if you are a graduate of the “School of Hard Knocks”. This movement we are witnessing toward self-promotion and marketing has always been true: This research paper doesn’t even use modern artists as a model for study – the subjects were part of the 20th Century abstract art movement and most died years ago.

You’ll recall that a central tenant of graffiti is that writers spread their names on every wall in different neighborhoods and cities to get “Fame”. As the authors of the paper Banerjee Mitali and Paul L. Ingram say, “CEOs, activists, scientists and innovators all benefit from fame. Meanwhile, the struggle for fame is becoming ever more intense and complex in a digital economy.” Download the paper here.

Yes, networking helps your career. In other breaking news, puppies are cute, the Pope is Catholic, and boys like short skirts.

This week our Images of the Week are coming to you directly from our latest visits to Madrid, Bilbao, and Bayonne. We’re excited to share what we found with BSA readers.

So here’s our weekly interview with the street, this time featuring Anna Taratiel, Artez, Aryz, C215, Dan Witz, Eltono, Invader, Monkeybird, MSW, Stinkfish, and Suso33.

Anna Taratiel. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Anna Taratiel. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Invader. Bilbao, Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Aryz. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Aryz. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Dan Witz. Madrid, Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
C215 for Points de Vue Festival. Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
C215 for Points de Vue Festival. Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
C215 for Points de Vue Festival. Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
C215 for Points de Vue Festival. Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
C215 for Points de Vue Festival. Bayonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Artez for Urvanity Arts. Madrid, Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
SUSO33. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
SUSO33. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Eltono. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Stinkfish. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
MSW. Beyonne, France. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Monkeybird. Bilbao Arts District. Bilbao, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
Untitled. Sunset. Madrid, Spain. March 2019. (photo © Jaime Rojo)
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BSA “Images Of The Year” For 2018 Video

BSA “Images Of The Year” For 2018 Video

Here it is! Photographer Jaime Rojo of BSA selects a handful of his favorite images from his travels through 9 countries and around New York this year to present our 2018 BSA Images of the Year.

Seeing the vast expressions of aesthetics and anti-aesthetic behavior has been a unique experience for us. We’re thankful to all of the artists and co-conspirators for their boundless ideas and energy, perspectives and personas.

Once you accept that much of the world is in a semi-permanent chaos you can embrace it, find order in the disorder, love inside the anger, a rhythm to every street.

And yes, beauty. Hope you enjoy BSA Images of the Year 2018.


Here’s a list of the artists featured in the video. Help us out if we missed someone, or if we misspelled someones nom de plume.

1Up Crew, Abe Lincoln Jr., Adam Fujita, Adele Renault, Adrian Wilson, Alex Sena, Arkane, Banksy, Ben Eine, BKFoxx, Bond Truluv, Bordalo II, Bravin Lee, C215, Cane Morto, Charles Williams, Cranio, Crash, Dee Dee, D*Face, Disordered, Egle Zvirblyte, Ernest Zacharevic, Erre, Faith LXVII, Faust, Geronimo, Gloss Black, Guillermo S. Quintana, Ichibantei, InDecline, Indie 184, Invader, Isaac Cordal, Jayson Naylor JR, Kaos, KNS, Lena McCarthy, Caleb Neelon, LET, Anthony Lister, Naomi Rag, Okuda, Os Gemeos, Owen Dippie, Pejac, Pixel Pancho, Pork, Raf Urban, Resistance is Female, Sainer, Senor Schnu, Skewville, Slinkachu, Solus, Squid Licker, Stinkfish, Strayones, Subway Doodle, The Rus Crew, Tristan Eaton, Vegan Flava, Vhils, Viktor Freso, Vinie, Waone, Winston Tseng, Zola

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Colombia Diary: The Completed Works, The Gold Rush, and the Jaguar in You

Colombia Diary: The Completed Works, The Gold Rush, and the Jaguar in You

Today a wrap up of BSA at an unusual location in Colombia to see a new initiative with Street Artists in an abandoned distillery brought back to life with their imaginations and penchant for transformation.


“Uh, yellow, black, with some white… because it’s high up,” Ben Eine says as he sketches out the four letters, G-O-L-D on a small piece of paper. He’s codifying an idea to paint the letters across the four huge storage tanks where M-City has painted a metaphorical gold-mining scene upon over the last few days. The massive piece is timely and timeless; referencing to the current informal gold rush happening here in Colombia, once again altering the physical and political landscape.


M-City at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A rotating mist fan is slowly stirring the thick tropical air while we sit at the round wooden table in this industrial compound watching Ben with a pen as he shows M-City his idea for topping off the piece – in his own charming manner.

“Yellow, black outline, little shadow. Your shit goes like this, blah blah blah. And then white outline. Or maybe like super light blue outline so it bounces off the silver. Yeah-yeah,” says the English graffiti writer with some final certainty on his vision.

Ben Eine sketching the idea with M-City. May 2018. (photo © Steven P. Harrington)

Ben Eine added GOLD to M-City ‘s piece at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Martha Cooper)

“Okay, perfect,” says the agreeable M-City, who quickly begins sourcing paint in a nearby pile of cardboard boxes. As a Street Artist who is curating this first phase of painting at this old Colombian distillery for Dictador Art Masters Foundation, he is helping others to hit their goals as much as he is directing his own creative work. Finally the collaboration is finished and it beams across the drying muddy field in the sun.

Ben Eine added GOLD to M-City ‘s piece at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Martha Cooper)

It’s this kind of collaborative camaraderie that often characterizes the Street Art scene across the world and one that sets this project apart from many “festivals”. For one thing, this project is private and small and away from the roaring crowd that can often accompany street works, and developing your idea as an artist can be done with minimal interruption.

The smaller artist roster also means that many of these creators have an opportunity to get to know one another better, to seek feedback, to formulate, to share perspectives. The old distillery setting itself is a highly unusual gallery environment that perpetuates the feeling of an extended studio.

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“We are completely amazed by all the stuff here on every level. All the objects, the whole factory,” says Jan, one half of the Polish duo Monstfur as he surveys a rounded tank that they are spraying layers of grey, black, and white to form a  stenciled cranium that also matches the one tattooed on his arm.

“Feeling the textures, seeing the patterns. Everything is so full of inspiration for us,” he beams. Placed in this laboratory of ideas, the guys seem right at home with their layers of decay and their Frankenstonian mythmaking – including their collective name that combines the English and Polish word for monster.

M-City at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

As you climb rusty ladders and duck under cobwebs or the occasional silently swooping bat, you see the possibilities for childlike ideation, opportunities to launch imaginary tales and adventures, directing energy and stirring alchemy.

Toxicomano takes the journey even further.

“Have you heard of Yage?” he asks, eager to share stories of a hallucinogenic plant that people who live in wooded, mountainous regions have used for years to transcend this reality. “It’s a strong beverage in the Amazonian,” he says. “When you drink it you are stoned.”

M-City at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Fair enough, but how does that relate to the 4-story high yellow and black jaguar with nice hair that is staring at you like a feline Mona Lisa? You’ve seen him going up and down the cherry-picker carefully laying out and spraying the stencils here for days and this intense model has unveiled, then commanded, this brick wall.

“All persons have a jaguar that is inside,” he explains with a sincere stare into your eyes. You reflexively make a quick internal inventory of yourself to see if it is possible to confirm the veracity of that statement. Well, maaaaaayyyyyybeeeeeee, now that you mention it.

M-City at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“When you drink this yage you can begin to think differently about your place in the world, your people, your environment,” he says. “The jaguar is the tiger of South America. From Mexico to Argentina we have the same jaguar. I think they are really pretty. I think in this area it is possible to find jaguars as well,” he says, which seems to indicate an excellent opportunity to scan the adjacent field of tall grass.

What does this Colombian Street Artist’s jaguar want to do? “I think my jaguar wants to communicate to the others and tell people that everyone has a jaguar inside.”

M-City at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City adds a NYC touch on a conduit at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Martha Cooper)

A great note to end this hot and sticky week in the farmlands and mountains of Northern Colombia. Mixed with the sun and the mud it has also seemed like a possibly mystical place that once housed the precise and time-honored industry of distilling. Now enlivened with the new works of English, Polish, and Colombian graffiti writers and Street Artists, it becomes an installation in an unusual location full of possibility – and we are curious to see where the next phase of this adventure leads.

Artists include: D*Face, Ben Eine, M-City, Monstfur, Toxicomano, Stinkfish, and Erre.

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Martha Cooper)

D*Face at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Toxicomano at the old distillery Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano at the old distillery Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano at the old distillery Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano at the old distillery Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Martha Cooper)

Stinkfish at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stinkfish at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stinkfish and Toxicomano at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stinkfish at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Erre at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Erre at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Erre at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Erre at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Filmmaker Collin Day at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Martha Cooper and Steven P. Harrington at the old distillery in Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 


This event has been made possible by Dictador Art Masters Foundation. To learn more about the foundation click here.


Thank you to Martha Cooper for sharing her exclusive images with BSA readers.

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BSA Images Of The Week: 05.20.18 / Colombia Special

BSA Images Of The Week: 05.20.18 / Colombia Special

BSA-Images-Week-Jan2015

You guys watch the royal wedding yesterday? We got the highlights, enough to make us cry. Not everyone is happy about these things, but then they see the hats and feathers and let it all go.

Of course we wish the very best to the beautiful couple.

Great week in Colombia this week as we had the pleasure of hanging with the likes of Ben Eine and D*Face, even if we couldn’t keep up with the drinking games and late night graffiti runs. Someone has to be responsible! From Cartagena to Valledupar to Bogotá, the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of the country are stupendous. And we need more time in Bogotá because that Street Art scene is crazy!

Luckily we were back in NYC just in time for the big Spanish speaking/singing block party outside of the apartment of racist lawyer Aaron Schlossberg, who made headlines this week for being a jackass and intimidating people with less power with his big white-man blabbering about Spanish speaking employees at a fast food restaurant, even threatening to call Immigration authorities.

Not only is he insulting himself and all New Yorkers (and the spirit of the USA), he may be indicating that he doesn’t get outside very much. If he did, he would realize that “while there is no precise count, some experts believe New York is home to as many as 800 languages — far more than the 176 spoken by students in the city’s public schools,” according to a 2010 article in the New York Times. Our favorite video this week is the one of him running from reporters while the Benny Hill theme song plays along. Bienvenidos a su ciudad Señor Schlossberg !

Here’s our weekly interview with the streets, this week featuring APC Crew, Ben Eine, Chinz, Collin Day, D*Face, ERRE, Monstfur, Stinkfish, 6ryzor and Toxicomano.

Top Image: Ben Eine for Dictador Art Masters Foundation. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine for Dictador Art Masters Foundation. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

APC Crew. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

APC Crew. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A motley crew at the old distillery. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

A little free-wheeling graffiti from M-City . 6ryzor . Chinz . Eine . Toxicomano . El Chopo . Erre.  Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City . 6ryzor . Chinz . Eine . Toxicomano . El Chopo . Erre.  Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

6ryzor. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Chinz. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Eine. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxic El Chopo. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

ERRE. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur at the old distillery. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur for Dictador Art Masrters Foundation. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face at the old distillery. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Chinz at the old distillery. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stinkfish. Valledepur, Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano at the old distillery. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Untitled. Director and handsome hatter Collin Day at the old distillery. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Selected Scenes from the Colombia Diary. Day 3 – Moments

Selected Scenes from the Colombia Diary. Day 3 – Moments

This week BSA is in an unusual location in Colombia by invitation to see a new initiative with Street Artists in an abandoned distillery now being brought back to life with their imaginations and penchant for transformation. Come along with us for a few days to see what we discover.


As we are chronicling the movement of the Street Art story into new spaces such as this hybrid venue that transforms an aged factory into a unique ex-urban gallery, it occurs to us that the revolution of this street culture movement has always been in its ability to adapt.

 Stinkfish. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

After last nights’ tumultuous rains that turned much of the dusty ground into thick chocolate mud we walked amongst these hulking steel giants of manufacturing again, seeing everyone and everything with new eyes.

Climbing up the rusted rickety staircases and rotting corrugated floor panels and peering out upon painters and vandals alike as they plot their next proposition, you remain alert for unscripted turns in the plot.

Ben Eine with Connor. Colombia. (photo © Steven P. Harrington)

Invariably a pause, an ellipse, a stolen moment may reveal something more about the artist and their passage into the creative ether. With a documentarian sense, you’ll want to capture it before it blinks away.

When the creative spirit is fluid in environments such as these, it is possibly impossible to articulate the complex set of actions, reactions, strategic calculations, synchronous movements, awkward missteps, punk pirouettes, and the occasional virtuosic executions that can take place.

Filmmaker Collin Day. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Once you accept that the process of creativity for Street Artists and those who enable them is rather full of magic, you have equipped yourself to see that magic wherever you look. It happens as quickly as the flight of the short-tailed bat that grazes rapidly passed your hat on its way to the roost .

These are fleeting moments.

Monstfur. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City and Martha. Colombia. (photo © Steven P. Harrington)

Filmmaker Radek Drozdowicz. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Louis and D*Facew. Colombia. (photo © Steven P. Harrington)

Ben Eine and Connor. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ben Eine and Connor. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur. Colombia. (photo © Steven P. Harrington)

Monstfur. Colombia. (photo © Steven P. Harrington)

M-City and Martha. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Louis Jensen. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Wildife. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Wildife. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Wildife. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Wildife. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Barrel’s rings. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 


This event has been made possible by Dictador Art Masters Foundation. To learn more about the foundation click here.

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This is How It’s Done : Colombia Diary. Day 2 – Process

This is How It’s Done : Colombia Diary. Day 2 – Process

This week BSA is in an unusual location in Colombia by invitation to see a new initiative with Street Artists in an abandoned distillery now being brought back to life with their imaginations and penchant for transformation. Come along with us for a few days to see what we discover.


In factories and in art-making, process is crucial to success.

Back at this Colombian factory site for a second day of work, the artists are climbing ladders, tracing out shapes, stepping back to check perspective, and lunging forward for the first genuine phase of painting. The brand new initiative on this industrial site sparks your mind with ideas – nothing seems impossible, actually. The future is unwritten.

Ben Eine and Connor. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

So it seems especially appropriately audacious when you see Ben Eine and his son Collin rolling by you on a massive lift that holds them aloft overhead with cans in hand. You deftly dart out of the way so you are not smushed underneath the massive rubber tires that roll toward you, carefully ducking the occasional leafy limb that is snapped off the tree they are grazing in their metal bucket as they paint, now wrapping to another side of the building.

Ben Eine. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

They are spraying out a series of Eine’s iconic lettering across the top floor of one of the compound’s brick facades, and suddenly you may have the feeling that this is the first page of a new book being written. We may not yet know what it will say, but you can appreciate the process, two guys from different generations extending their arms toward the wall, can in hand, propelling clouds of aerosol forward, writing a common missive.

Ben Eine. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Scattered through these rusty dusty caverns and crooks there are Street Artists at work; with birds and bats and beats filling the air. A new of industry at work, one can  appreciate now how the image is built. It’s a mysterious and sometimes spell-binding unveiling, carefully considered.

With no specific aesthetic guidelines from their hosts and no review of sketches, we are privileged to see these self-driven murals disclosed in real time without prejudice on walls of the artists choosing.

Stinkfish. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

There are myriad processes at play. Placed in the hands of artists who can appreciate the opportunity to create quality works , there is attention to detail and context. Whether it is D*Face’s ironic reappropriation of symbols/text and dramatically tragic heroes – or the pop culture humor of Toxicomano’s leopard queen, or the golden disk framing Stinkfish’s neo Colombian intergalactican icon, its a studied process that makes it happen.

Stinkfish. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City drips with rivers of sweat in the merciless humidity while peeling away one more panel of his four pillar stencil opus called “Goldmine”, his paint encrusted hand dropping another wet cutout with a deft gesture – leaving it to drift in the heavy breeze 3 stories beneath him to the ground.

The Monstfur duo carefully balance on ladders to reach and hold stencils, spraying out each textured layer of industrially inspired grayness, careful to align the successive hand-cuts that they are gridding across a tank that previously carried toxic fluids.

Stinkfish. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

As this projects’ character is taking shape while we are watching, you see that these artists are pouring themselves into the act properly, giving top flight performances.

It’s part of the process.

D*Face. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stephen Thompson of D*Face tam. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

D*Face, Louis and Stephen. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City with Martha. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

M-City. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monstfur. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Stinkfish . Ben Eine. Colombia. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 


This event has been made possible by Dictador Art Masters Foundation. To learn more about the foundation click here.

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New Spirits in an Old Distillery : Colombia Diary. Day 1

New Spirits in an Old Distillery : Colombia Diary. Day 1

This week BSA is in an unusual location in Colombia by invitation to see a new initiative with Street Artists in an abandoned distillery now being brought back to life with their imaginations and penchant for transformation. Come along with us for a few days to see what we discover.


The fantasies of graffiti writers and Street Artists are myriad but a few rise to the top; the abandoned factory is like a fever dream for a certain passionate class of urban explorers who crawl through holes in fences and slide through broken windows just to discover what lies inside these neglected hulks of industry – and to leave their mark.

Stinkfish. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“So when I began painting in Colombia and mainly in Bogotá I would take a photograph of someone in Bogotá and paint it. When I started to travel and I began to take people from one place to another so for example I took people from Colombia to Mexico. I took a lot of photographs in Mexico and took those images with me to Europe. I enjoyed bringing Mexican and Colombian people to Europe. So of course when I was in Europe I took pictures of this girl who was in the subway in Paris – and I brought her back to Colombia,” says Stinkfish.


In the imagination of many aerosol-armed archaeologists is a vision full of heavy pipes, deep coal ovens, chicken-wired windows, soaring steel silos and rusted rotund tanks, puffy clouds of steam wafting about, electrical boxes with color-coded diagrams, and an endless array of iron walkways and ladders that criss-cross at tight angles and climb higher toward the promising future of the Industrial Revolution.

Imagine what it would be like to have one of these places all to yourself and your friends and instead of fearing the security guard, he is there to protect you.

M-City. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

This is precisely the project we have walked into – thanks to an invitation from Polish Street Artist and professor M-City, who has convened with Dictador Art Masters Foundation to invite an intimately eclectic mix of European and South American Street Artists to create new pieces inside the hidden compound nestled in leafy palm oil plantations and more than an hour from the nearest city.

M.City. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Closed for decades, the former distillery still contains all its necessary armature of equipment and its ovens and tanks and charcoal barrels – along with tall grasses, a murky stream, many centipedes, some blue spotted wood lizards, black iguanas, and the occasional leopard Gecko.

BSA is here in Colombia for the next few days with M-City, D*Face, Stinkfish, Toxicomano, Ben Eine, and Monstfur along with some other special guests. Today we’ll just show you the work of the “advance crew” of M-City and the Colombian Street Artists Stinkfish and Toxicomano who checked out the place a few months ago and tested walls with some work examples just to see if it would be as divertido as they thought it would be to explore the old factory.

It is.

M-City. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“This was just for fun it’s sort of an abandoned submarine which I also did it on a canvas,” says M-City. It is also on the wall at Urban Spree in Berlin.”

What appeals most to him about this project? “It’s exciting because it’s very far from my home in Poland and if you look around you see that there’s nothing around here. It is in the middle of nowhere. We just have the palm trees around and the distillery is in the middle. So we do not have a “public” here. The artists are completely free to do what they want and there are not many people around taking pictures – it’s even kind of secret. So it’s private and it is protected. Nobody can just drop in you know?”

Toxicomano. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Colombian Street Artist Toxicomano took us on a tour of a number of stencil based pieces he put up in advance of this weeks events, explaining that he likes to reclaim symbols and use them for his own meanings. One Smurf we found on a concrete-splattered tiled basewall says “Fuck Racism”.

“I like to use these images because people have in their minds some common association with it and they remember something about it from when they were a child. Now they can  start to think about it differently.”

“In Colombia we have a mixture of races we have black people we have indigenous people we have roots from Spanish people and now we have American and European influences it’s a lot. We mix a lot of things like a soup like a Latin Americans Full of ingredients and we have a special flavor. Also I think a lot of people think of Smurfs as blue but they don’t know that the first Smurf comic was actually a black Smurf and in that particular story the blue Smurfs have a problem with the black Smurf.”

Toxicomano. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“This stencil got me in a lot of trouble on Instagram,” he says the stencil that says “Las mujeres son la verga” (roughly “Women are the dick”) – mostly because it is a slang that is interpreted differently across Latin America and Spain – including within his own native Colombia. Some thought it insulted women, others thought it empowers them. He says he really enjoyed seeing the differences of opinion  but regretted that some of the comments got into personal attacks. “I preferred to not comment and to observe,” he says.

Toxicomano. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Our friends the lovely iguanas at the distillery in Codazzi, Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Toxicomano. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Sunset at the distillery. Colombia. May 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 


This event has been made possible by Dictador Art Masters Foundation. To learn more about the foundation click here.

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BSA Film Friday: 09.01.17

BSA Film Friday: 09.01.17

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

Now screening :
1. From Pakistan: The Writing on the Wall
2. “Wrong Weight” Sculpture by Górnicki and Chazme in Łódź
3. CUMA PROJECT: Walking with the Lenca. Stinkfish, Mazatl and Kill Joy
4. ONCE in Barcelona for 12 + 1 Project

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BSA Special Feature: From Pakistan: The Writing on the Wall

Deconstructing the psyche of Karachi, through the graffiti on its walls…

The capital of the Pakistani province of Sindh, Karachi is the site of an active ongoing political and social Street Art/graffiti scene. Not typically popping up in conversations of Street Art in so-called western countries of Europe and the US, this scene has a character that you would not necessarily recognize, until you completely recognize it.

Here the battle is for your attention, usually reserved exclusively for political parties and, of course, advertising messages that give a particularly bent view of the world. This documentary looks at the ways artists are using public space and interviews them about their practice, and we find that the same approach to engaging the passerby exists here as well:

“I feel like if you are going to critique power or power structures it is kind of pointless to do it in the gallery… there is something about situating your art in a place that gives it greater meaning, a wider audience, more interactivity while making it .”

“I also wanted to see how a woman’s body would react in a space that is generally more dominated by the male.”

“The works present the state of a nation that is aware of it’s problem but not the solution.”

“Looking at advertisements, one finds interesting stories emerging from the layers of these overlapping messages.”

 “Wrong Weight” Sculpture by Górnicki and Chazme in Łódź

You may have seen our posting on this a short time ago : Times of Tumult Personified in Sculpture by Tomasz Górnicki and Chazme

“Wrong weight”, by sculptors Tomasz Górnicki and Chazme is the sixth in a series of public works around Łódź organized by UNIQA Art Łódź project with Łódź Events Centre. A surprisingly 3-dimensional outgrowth of a successful multi-wall mural program that has brought much attention to the city, you may say that somehow these sculptures contain within them the seeds of Street Art and its discontents.

Title: “wrong weight”
Artists: Tomasz Górnicki | Chazme
Address: Station Boat Station (from al. Family Poznań)
Project: Uniqa art boat
Curator: Michał Bieżyński
Organizer: Łódzkie Centrum Wydarzeń

 

CUMA PROJECT: Walking with the Lenca. Stinkfish, Mazatl and Kill Joy

CUMA Project is an independent Street Art project whose aim is to support popular and indigenous organizations/cultures of Latin America. “In April and May 2016, the street artists Stinkfish, Mazatl and Kill Joy visited the Lenca indigenous communities in the departments of Intibucà and San Francisco Lempira in Honduras”

 

Once for 12 + 1 / Contorno Urbano in Barcelona

“ONCE” Deconstructs and Reconstructs His Tag for 12 + 1 Project In Barcelona was how we described this project in June.

“Influenced by Bauhaus and Russian propaganda posters during the revolution, Catalonia born ONCE says he doesn’t really think that he is using abstract methods of manipulating his text into something unrecognizable. “Although for the general public,” he says, “these are only geometric shapes and they are more likely to think that I am painting with abstraction.” His control of aspects of fine art lettercraft reflects some of that heralded industrial society that was lauded a hundred years ago and it is somehow quite modern as well.”

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BSA Images Of The Week: 03.05.17

BSA Images Of The Week: 03.05.17

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We had a chance at Spring this week, and then it blew away. We’re back to the Antarctic for a few days.

NYC was inundated by art fairs as well, which was swell. Volta, Scope, Clio, Spring/Break – which was surprisingly not political or contentious, given its rather outsider status. Fair talk was glum, attendance was actually light at times, and most people where blaming you-know-who.

Perhaps that’s why Thursday’s opening of Trumpomania was packed and rather sweaty, although when you have 30 countries and 30 artists represented, you will probably fill the place. Even so, the energy was palpable, and guests freely “voiced their concerns”, as your high school guidance counselor might say, about a seemingly corrupt cabal that is practicing shock and awe on/upon the country daily.

One portly fellow at the show with a perspiring red face, beige cardigan, overcoat, and a backpack possibly containing an anvil, accosted us forcefully with champagne flute in hand to nearly yell for 10-12 minutes straight about Russians, cabinet heads that want to destroy their departments, Goldman Sachs, Exxon, the wall, book burning, impeachment, recusals, Jewish cemetery vandalism, teleprompter scripted calmness, possible alzheimer’s, and general viciousness. It was a Greatest Hits album minus the catchy hooks and clever phrasing – but with all the drums and guitar solos. (For you kids, an album was this flat wax disc that contained 9 songs you didn’t want and 1 song you did… oh never mind.) Just before he ignited into flames or triggered the heart attack which appeared to be imminent, we were mercifully interrupted and led away to look at OLEK’s pussy
art and Icy & Sot’s crocheted barbed wire fence piece.

Out on the streets of New York and elsewhere, artists are nearly yelling as well with their text based and figurative Street Art work. There appears to be no rest right now, and everyone is losing sleep or fighting or shaking their heads or “finding healthy strategies to achieve a sense balance” in a chaotic gritty abrasive beautiful city that somehow keeps racing forward no matter what the hell is going on.

City that never sleeps? We hear that.

Here’s our weekly interview with the streets, this week featuring: Ann Lewis, Beast, BustArt, El Sol 25, Empty Boy, Epic Uno, Felipe Pantone, Icy & Sot, Jerk Face, King, Koralie Supakitch, Mikael Takacs, Nico Panda, OLEK, Sen2, Smells, Stinkfish, and UFO 907.

Top image: UFO907 . Smells (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified Artist on the street. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified Artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Unidentified Artist (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Sen2 at Trumpomania. Salomon Arts Tribeca. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Icy & Sot at Trumpomania. Salomon Arts Tribeca. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Olek at Trumpomania. Salomon Arts Tribeca. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Mikael Takacs at Trumpomania. Salomon Arts Tribeca. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Ann Lewis (photo © Jaime Rojo)

King (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Empty Boy . Stinkfish in Medellin, Colombia. (photo © Stinkfish)

Felipe Pantone (photo © Jaime Rojo)

El Sol 25 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Nico Panda . Beast (photo © Jaime Rojo)

BustArt. Basel, Switzerland. (photo © BustArt)

Jerk Face (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Koralie Supakitch (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Koralie Supakitch. Deatil. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Epic Uno (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Epic Uno (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Untitled. Manhattan. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

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Everyday Magic In The Navajo Nation with Stinkfish, Grafica Mazatl, and Killjoy Press.

Everyday Magic In The Navajo Nation with Stinkfish, Grafica Mazatl, and Killjoy Press.

Who is your muse? Most artists have one, or a few. The portraits that Street Artists leave on walls usually have a story behind them, a personal connection to the figure depicted. The Bogata based Stinkfish began doing graffiti and Street Art in 2003 and has focused his portraits on anonymous people he sees in streets or public spaces – usually without them knowing he has captured their expression while they are in the midst of daily life.

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Killjoy Press. Crossroads. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

Creating these images usually only once, they impart their own personal story and create a new narrative when placed into an entirely original location – often in a city far from where they live. Using techniques of stencil, graphic design, and more traditional freestyling aersol graffiti, Stinkfish elaborates on an initial idea and allows it to take on a life of its own. By translating a daily life from one location to another context entirely, Stinkfish highlights our common ground, our shared humanity.

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Killjoy Press. Crossroads. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

In September Stinkfish and two other artists worked collaboratively on three walls on or near the Navajo Nation courtesy of their host Chip Thomas (Jetsonorama). Stinkfish, Grafica Mazatl and Killjoy Press all intermingled their respective styles and visual vocabulary on structures in the desert – always collaborating with the vast sky all around them.

The sites include an abandoned trailer in Gray Mountain, Arizona which is about a mile away from the southwestern border of the Navajo nation. The remaining sites are on the Navajo nation and include the 89/160 junction near Tuba City and the Crossroads. Together the three created new works that are inspired by their immediate surroundings while bringing their own muses and travels with them.

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Killjoy Press. Crossroads. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Original photo from Phnom Penh, Cambodia in March 2015 by Stinkfish (©Stinkfish)

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Mazatl at work. Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Killjoy Press. Crossroads. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Killjoy Press. Crossroads. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Killjoy Press. Crossroads. Navajo Nation. (photo © Jess X Chen)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Original photo from Malmo, Sweden in August 2014 by Stinkfish (©Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. Gray Mountain, AZ. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. 89/160 Junction. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. 89/160 Junction. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Original photo from Gulf of Gabes, Tunisia during his time there for the Djerbahood project in August 2014 by Stinkfish (©Stinkfish)

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Stinkfish. Grafica Mazatl. 89/160 Junction. Navajo Nation. (photo © Stinkfish)

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Bogotá : A Liberal Approach To Art Creates Exceptional Street Culture

Bogotá : A Liberal Approach To Art Creates Exceptional Street Culture

Thanks to a globalism of culture, many cities around the world have sprouted vibrant Street Art scenes – including today’s focus, Bogotá, Columbia. Far more open to expression than many cities, Bogotá has become a tolerant and welcoming place for artists on public walls, with the mayor actually agreeing and decreeing that graffiti and street art are a form of valued artistic expression, as long as you lay off the statues and City Hall. The government even gives grants for some painting, and political and social protest on walls goes a little further than you might expect. As part of a personal tour of Columbia in the last couple of months, occasional BSA contributor Yoav Litvin travelled to Bogotá and met a couple of artists who told him about the scene there.
 
 
by Yoav Litvin

We arrived at the Bogotá airport in the evening. For convenience sake, we took a cab from the airport to our accommodation in the heart of La Candelaria, an area of town known for its museums, beautiful architecture and street art. I knew Bogotá was going to be as special as far as its street art scene. I just did not know yet how incredible it was going to be.

My introduction to Bogotá street art and graffiti was the highway from the airport into town, aka Calle 26—it was completely BOMBED. When I say bombed I mean there was not a single space free of art on the walls or tunnels of the highway for miles on end. The beautiful graffiti and street art along with countless tags adorning the walls made me feel like a kid in a candy store. Immediately I knew Bogotá was going to be special, a heaven for street art and graffiti.

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Stink Fish. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

During my visit I was fortunate to meet two very active local artists: DJ LU (aka Juegasiempre), otherwise known as the “Bogotá Banksy” and CRISP, an Aussie transplant that has made the city his home. They were courteous and answered some of my questions.

Yoav Litvin: What makes the street art and graffiti scene so unique in Bogotá? Please discuss the political background in Bogotá in particular and Colombia in general and some policies (legality etc.) that influence the great diversity of work on the streets. What’s special here?
DJ LU: Bogotá’s treasure is its diversity, in every sense. It has very eclectic architecture, interesting places, and is extremely multiracial. Urban expressions are not the exception; here you can find murals, tagging, hip hop graffiti, paste ups, stickers, characters, lettering and stencil work among others. Bogotá is an ideal playground for public expression. First of all, its urban structure is patchy making it ideally suited as far as context; there are many residual spaces, remnants of highway constructions, parking lots and abandoned structures.

Second, the legislation is tolerant, so unless you are engaged in a very clear act of vandalism you won’t have a problem with the law. Residents are also becoming familiar with the practice so there is tolerance from the local population.

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Toxicomano . Unknown .  DJ LU .  Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

CRISP: Bogotá is one of the most exciting, underrated and prolific urban art scenes on the planet. This is due to a combination of several factors, which have created a melting pot of creativity and expression. Firstly, there is a long history of civil unrest, inequality and injustices in Colombia that make street art and graffiti a potent form of expression and protest for the people.

It actually has the longest running civil war in the world, over half a century of bloodshed!

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Toxicomano . DJ LU . Lesivo . Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

Secondly, it has a very tolerant legal approach to urban art compared to most other cities in the world. It’s not technically illegal but “prohibited”, which provides a unique situation where grafiteros can take their time and paint in broad daylight. That said, an artist still needs to be cautious of police depending on the type of street art you are doing and due to police history of brutality.

Thirdly, Colombia has a rich resource of inspiration: its people, music, food, indigenous cultures, animals and plants from the Pacific, Andes, Amazon and Caribbean! This complex mix of factors makes Bogotá’s urban art scene truly unique.

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DJ LU Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

Yoav Litvin: What motivates you in your work? Please discuss how your work is an expression of your development within the scene in Bogota.
DJ LU: My work is motivated by reality. I’m interested in making people aware–through art–of lots of situations that affect us as a society. The first project I started with on the street is the Pictogram project. It is based on semiotics and sign language. As it proposes very simple designs it is intended to relay a message immediately. In this project I have designed more than 60 pictograms that I have put up all over Bogotá and many other cities around the world in stencil form, stickers and paste ups.

Afterwards came the Street Pride project in which I took photographs of anonymous people whose appearance I found aesthetically interesting and who were interacting with the public space and I used them as models for my work. I believe that advertisements and the media in general are fabricating idols for the people to follow and to speed up consumerism. I want to make the invisible visible, to bring attention to anonymous people who construct our street culture.

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 Crisp. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

CRISP: I’ve always expressed myself through art from a very young age. In terms of street art I was a late bloomer. Despite an interest and curiosity in urban art, It was only when I came to Bogota that I truly became a street artist! I met grafitero friends here who encouraged me to put my artwork up in the street. Street art has shown me that it’s important that our public spaces aren’t controlled and dictated solely by councils, corporations, marketing companies, and formal art institutes.

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Toxicomano. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

Yoav Litvin:  How do you see the future of street art and graffiti in Bogota?
DJ LU: I believe that the progress of street art and graffiti is determined by a lot of factors: legal issues, trends, politics and economics. Graffiti and street art are trendy now in Bogotá, and this will most likely decrease. At that point only the ones that are doing it for real will keep working outside.

CRISP: The huge changes I’ve witnessed since 2001 through 2008 until the present are phenomenal. Bogota’s urban art has exploded in terms of quality and quantity. Everywhere you look, walk and drive, you see some form of creativity and expression on nearly every block in the city!

Mostly it is grass roots, passion-driven and totally devoid of the more corporate, council and gallery-organized and funded “street art” you see in many other cities in the world. In the near future I see many talented Colombian artists finally getting the recognition, support and ability to share their work with a wider international audience they deserve. Ironically this point isn’t important to many grafiteros here.

It’s the way of life, the friends, the culture, pure expression, fun, connecting with the public and the happiness this connection with the street brings that’s most important! In the future Bogota will be known as an urban art mecca but for all the right reasons!

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Lesivo. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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Guache. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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Stinkfish. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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APC . Stinkfish . FCO . Temor. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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Praxis. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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Frank Salvador . Sur Beat. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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Bastardilla wheatpaste afloat beneath a handful of dripping tags. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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Bastardilla. Detail. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

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El Pez. Bogota, Colombia. (photo © Yoav Litvin)

 

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