Typically you may expect to be praying the novena and asking God for absolution of your dastardly sins here in this sprawling compound called The Konvent near Barcelona. While no one would stop you today, you may also wish to check out a number of new installations throughout the many buildings by Street Artists.
The Roman Catholic former convent hosted 50 or so artists over the last couple of years to transform the space, perhaps to reinterpret its original charge in a modern light, perhaps just to ready the compound for commercial, cultural, and community pursuits of the owners.
Certainly the decaying spaces and austere aesthetic is inviting, calming, possibly frightening, depending on your associations. Now they are home for music, dance, theatre, film festivals, and artist residencies – often offered only in Catalan but some also in European Spanish.
As you walk through the spaces you are welcomed by these works by artists, many of them at one time or another categorized as Street Artists, whose voices now usher in a new era of contemplation and perhaps internal exploration.
Our thanks to photogapher and BSA contributor Lluis Olive Bulbena for sharing these images from El Konvent.
For more information about El Konvent please Click HERE
If you ever wonder who the government actually is, take a look under the highway of Toronto. You’ll see there that it is the people, as in We The People, who are holding up the roads in Underpass Park – thanks to Street Artists Labrona and Troy Lovegates (a.k.a. OTHER).
“OTHER did portraits of local residents and I did a crowd of people,” he tells us of the new spate of painting that measures 180 feet (55 meters) and 83 people. Friends since they were about 8 years old, the guys have each developed solid art careers at least tangentially reflected through their mutual love for graffiti and hopping freights across the massive and wooly North American continent.
So it is no surprise that idiosyncratic figures and their interpersonal dynamics have figured strongly into the distinctly different styles of painting over three and a half decades. Now more often illegal work is turning more often into legal mural work, as in the case of these portraits on these “Legacy Pillars” in Underpass Park, located between Cherry Street and Bayview Avenue, under the Eastern Avenue and Richmond/Adelaide overpasses. That is not to say that they have stopped hopping freights, graffiti gods forbid.
The area itself used to be industrial wasteland where kids like he and Labrona used to hang out, so it is significant to OTHER that the new project is beautifying and that there are shiny new condos nearby.
“I used to come down here for raves in the early 90’s in damp old brick warehouses,” he says on his Facebook post about the project.
He looks at a portrait of a balding chap in a short blue jacket walking with aplomb, eyes cast downward at his route. “I thought I would paint a working class Dude down here in remembrance of what was … a lot of the oldies come for walks to see all the shiny new aluminum condos and duck ponds and to play in the park with their grandchildren.”
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Bikismo, Cera, Conor Harrington, indie184, Knarf, London Kaye, Nemo, NemO’s, Pyramid Oracle, Sheryo, Stikki Peaches, The Yok, Troy Lovegates, UNO, and Wolfe Work.
Scroll to the end to see the brand new video of M-City stencilling atop a sea vessel during his Nordic oceanic installation off the coast of Stavanger. Also, check out the blowing winds on the mic at the beginning.
We’re in the Arizona desert today where the third season of Street Artist Jetsonorama’s “Painted Desert Project” has been gently and purposefully been rolling out this summer. The wholistic blend of the political, social, and personal in these works completed in the Navajo Nation is a natural alchemy; the idea of separating them is a non-starter for this doctor/artist/organizer/activist otherwise known as Chip Thomas.
With the project and his own work Chip says he aims to amplify the voices of the people on the reservation. The invited artists roll in at different intervals through the year, giving them time to absorb the life and the environment and to respond to it in a way that is perhaps more integrated than other projects with Street Artists.
“Photogenic country, eh?” says the Canadian Street Artist named Labrona, who shows us today some of the works he left with his buddy Troy Love Gates AKA OTHER, who he doesn’t get to see too much of these days since OTHER moved to California. “It was a great trip and I got to spend time with Other.”
Included artists over the course of this years “Painted Desert Project” are Monica Canilao and Doodles (Nick Mann), LNY, Jaz, Hyuro, and next year Nicolas Lampert of Justseeds is already on board. Chip and Monica also have completed a collaboration that is also being used as a poster in coordination with Justseeds to promote the “People’s Climate March” in New York next month. See a copy of the poster at the end of this posting.
For those of you north of the Equator who have been announcing that Summer is over, may we remind you that we still have till Saturday the 21st so keep playing in the sun together with short sleeves on till darkness starts invading and the smell of dinner wafts out of windows as you skateboard past them back home.
Can’t call yourself a Canuck and not include a hockey player in your repetoire, right? This one was conjured during a reunion that Grandpa Troy had with some of the other geezers in BSM crew he used to get up with back in da day. “Damn the graffiti crew I am in turned 20 !!!! All the old men got together and painted a giant wall … here is a hockey player I put up and the fringes is insane lettering by Kwest and Bacon,” he says. Next stop, coffin painting because Mr. Lovegates is obviously one foot in the grave and one foot on a banana peel.
“One of my favorite artists on this planet is Saddo from Romania. He had an art exhibition on the East coast of Canada and the gallery space hooked us up with a giant wall and a lift,” says Lovegates. “So we freestyled this masked man walking with a mythical beast “
“I was invited by Pawn Works out to Sheboygan, Wisconsin to spend the week in a park with my shoes off painting a toilet shelter,” he says with glee. “It’s a super fun part of the world, with bonfires on the beach,” he says of the project that is run by the John Michael Kohler Arts Center.
The MURAL Festival in Montreal took over Saint-Laurent Boulevard over the weekend with the work of more than 25 local, national and international Street Artists working separately and in concert across large walls for this first ever event, and many have taken notice. Nevermind the gossip on the street about mayoral corruption and an ongoing rancorous debate here about a perceived graffiti problem in the city, MURAL and its supporters clearly are staking a claim on a growing world Street Art stage with a strong show that can legitimately brag about a solid mix of talent and styles.
Judging from the attendance, the hashtag enthusiasm, and the cameras hoisted into the air, there should be no debate about how much the kids actually love this stuff – and how many non-kids are also fueling the current explosion of art in the public sphere. “From 5 to 80 years old, the crowd discovered amazing talents and learned to appreciate a public art form that had been cast aside and misidentified as vandalism for the past 20 years,” says Fred Caron, one of the organizers and a cultural worker in the public art milieu. “The cultural values and power of murals is finally back in the North thanks to a crazy bunch of young Canucks.”
For an expansive event like this to succeed right out of the gate, it doesn’t hurt that Montreal is a relatively homogenous city with a very strong tax base, an engaged business sector, and a vibrant arts culture chock full of ideas, performances, and participatory aspirations. With an appreciative audience thronging into the four day festival for fun and culture, the numerous large mural walls in multiple locations were accompanied by body painting, a paint battle, painting with your feet, block parties, live music, djs, a photo booth, tours on foot and bike, skateboard lessons, kite making, urban “street” inspired dance troupes, night time projections, and naturally, beer.
“What captivated me most about this trip was the level of community, cross pollination and camaraderie shared between the different artists groups, institutions and organizations in the city,” enthuses LNY, a New Jersey based Street Artist who has been part of a few of these city-centric festivals over the last couple of years. Rather than cheaply plugging a downtown area with a momentary hype, a sort of “Ghetto Olympics” that fades quickly, leaving no real value to a community, LNY notes that the main organizers of MURAL continued to be engaged with the needs of the artists and were involved with the various satellite organizations to make sure they were thriving.
“This to me is the perfect gauge for healthy communities and for worthwhile festivals that can transcend their original novelty and spectacle to really give something back,” he remarks.
For Street Art photographer Daniel Estaban Rojas, whose work here displays most of the finished pieces at press time, MURAL was an inspiring opportunity to meet many new artists and to be proud of the city. “The face of Montreal has changed with this festival and I think that Street Art will be a lot more accepted in this city. Most people that I spoke to while shooting on the streets had one thing in common to say, and that was ‘thank you’,” he reports with some relief and pride. “Knowing that people were so grateful and being surrounded by such positive vibes made it all the better.”
Included in the MURAL Festival lineup (though not all represented here) were A Squid Called Sebastion, A’Shop, Chris Dyer, Christina Angelina, En Masse, Escif, Fin and Christina, Gaia, Jason Botkin, Labrona, Le Bonnard, LNY, Omen, Other, Other (aka Troy Lovegates), Paria Crew, Phlegm, Pixel Pancho, Reka One, Ricardo Cavolo, ROA, Shantz Brothers, Stare, Stikki Peaches, Troy Lovegates, and Wzrds GNG, among others.
For his first visit to Montreal, the Belgian Street Artist named ROA says that he had a great time creating this “still life” with a bison and a bear. When talking about his inspiration, ROA says that he was impressed with the history of the so-called American bison, which was incredibly abundant in the early 19th century, numbering more than 40 million. After being hunted almost into extinction with a population of 200 a century later, the bison slowly have reestablished their numbers in Canada to 700,000. He decided to add a bear laying on top because it tells a similar story of a native mammal in the region.
“I decided to speak about the Americas and the aspects that unite us though history and conflict,” explains Street Artist LNY about his portrait of his cousin Leslie. He chose her because he considers her, “a person who represents the unification of north and south in an individual; a sort of cultural hybridism.” She is handling maiz, or corn, “as a metaphor for PanAmerican unity; as a crop that has sustained the continents since ancient times and that is now a shell of it’s former self after being thoroughly genetically modified for gain and profit.”
For his participation in the MURAL Festival, it was primarily about coming home for the Canadian artist named Other (AKA Troy Lovegates). “All my spare moments were playing frisbee and catching up with old friends,” he says as he describes the events.
But what about the fellows he painted for the wall? Actually, they are two representations of one man, a troubled sort of guy he met recently.
“The painting I did is of a man I met in Ottawa a few days before the festival who was lost and homeless and wanted to return home to Montreal. But he was scattered, laying in a parking lot talking nonsense. He seemed very gentle and I hope I brought back a part of him to Montreal.”
Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening: En Masse X Musée des Beaux Arts de Montréal , Entes y Pesimo AKA Los Primos in Chile, and Jessy Nite in Hollywood: Diamonds….
BSA Special Feature:
En Masse X Musée des Beaux Arts de Montréal from Fred Caron
The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts invited the En Masse Project in for the creation of their new educational area, and here is a record of the installation by Fred Caron. Using only black and white, En Masse covered walls, ceilings, a hallway, and a staircase in the Museum as part of a new program of “educational zones” that offer free access and workshops to kids and their adults.
Artists include: Labrona, Tyler Rauman, Jason Botkin, Rupert Bottenberg, Fred Caron, Melissa DelPinto, Alan Ganev, Beef Oreo, Bruno Rathbone, Jason Wasserman, Peru143, Raphaële Bard, Ad Deville, MCBaldasseri, Dan Buller, Adam Vieira, Peter Ferguson, Carlos Santos, Katie Green, Cheryl Voisine, Tyson Bodnarhuk, Fred Casia, Dominic Brunette, Olivier Bonnard, Troy Lovegates, Lea Heinrich, Dave Todaro.
Entes y Pesimo AKA Los Primos in Chile
Here’s a video of Entes y Pesimo on their visit to Chile in November 2012.
Jessy Nite in Hollywood: Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend…
Creating a Hollyhood Kaleidoscope for The Downtown Hollywood Mural Project in Florida, here is a sunny warm look of the installation in video edited and shot by Peter Vahan.
The SOWEBO section of Baltimore has been a hub of activity in recent months as Street Artists have been passing through town, often with an introduction or two from Martha Cooper to the people who live here. It’s not uncommon for an artist to do a portrait of a resident, as in the case of Troy Lovegates (AKA Other), below, or even of their horses, as in the case of LNY, Jetsonorama, and Jaz who created cool pieces that reference the few horse farms that are nestled into the historic blocks in this neighborhood. Traditional to basic transportation, they are known locally as the animals that pull carts of produce for the sellers, or “arabs”.
Ask a room full of artists living here in New York if anyone every feels like a chump for making soul-sucking mediocre commercial work just to pay the jacked up rent. Hands will fill the air like ‘Amen’s at the Brooklyn Tabernacle at a Sunday morning sermon. Compound the cost of live/work space with the fact that, if you were lucky enough to get an education, your student loans debts are like a massive cinderblock around your neck. Many of today’s artists are expecting to labor long hours doing commercial or corporate art for years, often now without benefits or security – leaving them with ever-less time and energy to build a career, let alone a body of artistic work.
Street Artist Troy Lovegates is colorfully skewering the King in this County of Kings with his new surreally comedic metaphor called “The King and the Artist”, painted directly on the wall at the Kunsthalle Galapagos Gallery in DUMBO, Brooklyn. Like days of olde when the Church and Royalty held the purse for most creative expression, the 99% is waking up these days to the unholy marriages that wield growing influence over the entire cultural and institutional landscape, including areas of creative expression. With “The King”, Lovegates depicts a well equipped megaspender imperiously dictating what will be art and claiming it as his own with his platinum sword waving wildly while the barefoot creator, a mind bubbling with a multitude of other ideas, tries to fend himself with tools laughably inadequate.
It’s a tug of war that is historical and contemporary of course – from faux communist capitalists to gold encrusted power families to religious gangs gilded in sanctity, artists have always procured the propaganda and painted a world view according to someone else’s vision. With signs ever more obvious around us, Mr. Lovegates informs us here that the game is still the same and some young artists are painfully aware of the rigged class system they’re working within. Hopefully someone will buy it.
Woo Hooooooooo! Street Art and graffiti shows are hopping tonight ya’ll! With shows in Chinatown, Dumbo, and Williamsburg, you’re going to have to take the train and the bus if you want to catch it all.
1. Cake and Don Pablo Pedro at Mighty Tanaka (DUMBO)
2. “All Talk” Group Show at Pandemic (Williamsburg, BK)
3. “Snowblind” at Klughause (Chinatown)
4. “Ocean Size” at Kunsthalle Galapagos Gallery SATURDAY 2/18 (DUMBO) 5. “What I Know,” curated by Jason Andrew
6. ” The Permanent Collection Volume II: My Own Private Serpico,” English Kills Gallery
7. Kraftwerk Retrospective at MOMA in April
8. William Thomas Porter – Splendid Cycles (VIDEO)
9. Connor Harrington “Black Herds of the Rain” (VIDEO)
10. JAZ in Mexico City with MAMUTT (VIDEO)
11. Nuria Mora in South Africa (VIDEO)
Cake and Don Pablo Pedro at Mighty Tanaka (DUMBO)
We’ve interviewed Cake this week, and Don Pablo Pedro when he wasn’t in shows, and we can assure you that “Inside Out” is about all the disgusting little bits you keep inside. Tonight they’re out at Mighty Tanaka.
For further information regarding this show click here
“All Talk” Group Show at Pandemic (Williamsburg, BK)
“Some of New York City’s boldest anti-heros, cynics and preachers” – Say no more! Tell me where to sign. “All Talk” is the new group show at Pandemic Gallery opens today with the participation of: Aakash Nihalani, Andrew H. Shirley, Cassius Fouler, Destroy & Rebuild, Gabriel Specter, Isabel Lasala, J. Ralph Phillips, Jenna Hicock, Jesse Edwards, Map, Merk, and NohJColey.
For further information regarding this show click here.
“Snowblind” at Klughause (Chinatown)
We’re gonna start calling it SLUGHOUSE because their first 3 shows have been heavy hitters for such a small scrappy gallery at the foot of the Manhattan Bridge, near a Police Precinct, and yet in damn near darkness. The concept for tonights show is cool, but what’s cooler is CARNAGE, the magazine by Ray Mock, one of the best graffiti photogs on the street today. Oh, also, Martha Cooper is in the show. See ya there!. “Snowblind” opens today with the participation of Martha Cooper, Ray Mock, Alexander Richter, Mike P, Bob Barry, Oscar Arriola, Graham Shimberg, Michael Fales, and Jesse Edwards.
For further information regarding this show click here.
“Ocean Size” at Kunsthalle Galapagos Gallery SATURDAY 2/18 (DUMBO)
Yo, we checked this one out as it was going up yesterday – It’s worth it and Toronto based Street Artist and fine artist Troy Lovegates just killed it with this brand new piece which we’re showing you a detail of below.
For further information regarding this show click here.
Also happening this weekend
“What I Know,” curated by Jason Andrew – The Bushwick arts leader who makes art happen, Mr. Andrew curates a 40 person show at NYCAMS (New York Center for Art and Media Studies), opening tonight. Download the PDF here
English Kills Gallery Permanent Collection opening Friday night : ” The Permanent Collection Volume II: My Own Private Serpico,” the second installment of works from the English Kills Permanent Collection featuring David Pappaceno, Don Pablo Pedro, Cleon Peterson, Steven Thompson, Brent Owens, Vilaykorn Sayaphet, Hiroshi Shafer, Joe Borelli, Frank Stella, Peter Dobill, Andy Piedilato, Jim Herbert, Tyrome Tripoli, Kevin Brady, Jenn Brehm, Kevin Regan, Giles Thompson, Jeff Clark, Mike Olin, Shane Heinemeier, Dan Taylor, Lenny Reibstein, Tescia Seufferlein, Andrew Ohanesian, Andrew Hurst, Austin Thomas, Evan Ryer, Gary Cullen
Kraftwerk Retrospective at MOMA in April – Tickets on Sale Wed 2/22
The live presentation “Kraftwerk-Retrospective 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8″ will explore their pioneering electronic music and each of their eight, groundbreaking studio albums with a unique set of projected images (some in 3-D ):
The music called electronic was basically created by Kraftwerk, who began four decades ago and whose influence and flat out appropriated music appears in work by these artists, to name a few: Jay-Z, Coldplay, Afrika Bambaata, Chemical Brothers, Pink Floyd, Fatboy Slim, New Order, Fergie, Ladytron, Missy Elliott, Franz Ferdinand, Thompson Twins, and yes, McDonna.
William Thomas Porter – Splendid Cycles (VIDEO)
Creater and builder of the famous “F*ck Bike 001” now on view at the Museum of Sex show “F*ck Art”, here is a video following William Thomas Porter around on his preferred form of transportation. “I wouldn’t call them mutants,” he says of his bike caricatures, “because that would make them sound ugly. It’s more like creating this… splendid form.”
Connor Harrington “Black Herds of the Rain” (VIDEO)
Image: David Enters Adulthood by Jebediah Long, 2012
Tony Ingrisano, Sylvia Jeffriess, Jebediah Long, Troy Lovegates,
James Moore, Fumi Nakamura
Kunsthalle Galapagos is pleased to present Ocean Size, a group
exhibition of six artists who question our perceptions of reality.
Their works coax us to join them in fantastical worlds of bold colors,
precise lines, and mutated patterns. Distorted characters and
fragments morph and fray into an ordered chaos. Disjointed narratives,
found memories and alter-egos situate us, then shift our perceptions
of our own state of being. The work compels us to reach beyond our
own comprehension to something bigger than ourselves, something “ocean
Along with the exhibition, Kunsthalle Galapagos presents a new limited
print edition by Troy Lovegates,
published by Marginal Editions.
Ocean Size is curated by Julie McKim, Erik Hougen, Albert Shelton, Gracie Kazer