All posts tagged: U.K.

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)

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

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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)

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

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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)

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

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

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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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Rafael Schacter and Filippo Minelli : 15 for 2015

Rafael Schacter and Filippo Minelli : 15 for 2015

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What are you celebrating this season? We’re celebrating BSA readers and fans with a holiday assorted chocolate box of 15 of the smartest and tastiest people we know. Each day until the new year we ask a guest to take a moment to reflect on 2015 and to tell us about one photograph that best captures the year for him or her. It’s our way of sharing the sweetness of the season and saying ‘thank you’ for inspiring us throughout the year.

Rafael Schacter is an anthropologist, curator, and the author of The World Atlas of Street Art and Graffiti and Order and Ornament: Graffiti, Street Art and the Parergon. He is also a researcher of graffiti and Street Art in the Department of Anthropology, University College London and is a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow 2014-2017 also at University College London. Among other topics discussed at lectures and conferences around the world Dr. Schacter argues that graffiti and Street Art produce “insurgent images” that should be seen to reface, rather than deface, the city.


London, UK
January 23, 2015
Artist: Filippo Minelli
Photograph by Rafa Suñen

This image, by the photographer Rafa Suñen, is taken from an action by the artist Filippo Minelli entitled ‘Bold Statements’. It was performed on the Somerset House River Terrace on January 23, 2015, as part of the Mapping the City exhibition which I curated for Approved by Pablo.

I picked this image because it was an amazing start to the year for me, at once the most stressful and the most exciting project I have ever been a part of. Whilst I was immensely proud of the exhibition and what we as a team accomplished, the cultural programme and ephemeral actions we organised alongside the exhibit itself were the things I personally enjoyed the most.

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Filippo’s performance was a beautiful moment that I will always remember. A perfect London winter’s day, a magical, ephemeral moment in which a group of people – a group from different backgrounds, different ages, different places – all  came together to take part in something equally personal as political. Something equally absurd as affective. Something capturing everything I love about public art in one condensed instant.

~ Rafael Schacter

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Mapping the City was covered by BSA along with an interview with Raphael in The Huffington Post HERE.

 

 

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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!

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The Wonderfully Dismal Kingdom of Banksy

The Wonderfully Dismal Kingdom of Banksy

Banksy has ventured into the entertaining resort business. One that would possibly be your last resort.

A scathing social and political critique of any number of targets that routinely come under the purview of this artist/curator/commentator/showman, this big tent brings everyone inside for a beating. Rampant capitalism, civic hypocrisy, the war industry, advertising deceit, an encroaching police state, environmental destruction, the widening gap in social equality, xenophobia with its inherent racism, and our insatiable penchant for sunny denial are a partial list of woes addressed. If you don’t feel sickened or guilty after visiting Dismaland perhaps you could affect a certain smugness that says, “Finally, someone is talking about all of these important issues that I’ve been going on about.”

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Cheerfully cynical and sarcastic, this magic kingdom is most successful when you are challenged to reconsider a behavior or position – and with 50 or so invited co-exhibitionists, some whose bodies of work are substantial on their own, Banksy clearly intends to challenge you and indict you with a relentless barrage of over-the-top funhouse symbolism and metaphor. If, for example, you are enthralled by those American right-wing Christian Halloween “Hell House” installations that feature pregnant teen girls in stirrups and sallow-faced gay HIV-positive patients in hospital beds you’ll cherish the harrowing Banksy path to salvation. Alas, there may be no salvation, sorry.

Here you can see bright yellow bathtub ducks swimming in an oil spill, there you can play paparazzi with the other flashing bulbs recording Cinderalla’s overturned carriage crash. Next, get a load of the toy boats dangerously overloaded with refugees and the knife-wielding butcher eye-balling the horses he’s riding with on the merry-go-round. If Disneyland clobbers you with candy-covered bromides and implausibly rosy fantasy, Dismaland brings you to the edge of the abyss of man’s folly and gently nudges you to fall into it. Or jump.

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Particularly effective to the experience are the grim and listless personnel who mind the grounds and offer no clear or meaningful help. Not quite menacing, they could just be impersonating sullen teens. Perhaps they are buckling under the weight of low wages and dim opportunities on the horizon or are simply humiliated by the balloons some are made to carry that say, “I’m an Imbecil”.

On a particularly gray and dreary day periodically warmed with the sun, the photographer named Butterfly made her pilgrimage to this nightmare fairy tale by the seaside for the big opening and below she shares with BSA readers her images and observations on the pop-up exhibition to help us all feel a bit of the dreadful experience first-hand.

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Banksy. Escif. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

~ By Butterfly

Weston-Super-Mare is a British seaside town, 30 minutes from Bristol, where families spend the day out donkey riding, visiting the Seaquarium or trying arcades at the Pier while kids build sandcastles on a muddy beach in miserable weather.

Rumors had been circulating for weeks about big installations being built in the former Tropicana, a derelict lido closed since 2000 which once hosted the biggest outdoor swimming pool in Europe. The rumblings and the build up to the announcement to the show was phenomenal, along with the conjecture: Is it a film set? Is it a show? Is it a fair? Is it art?

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Banksy. Cinderella sufferd a crash. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Finally we know: This is Banksy’s biggest show to date: Dismaland. It is, according to promotional materials “is a festival of art, amusements and entry-level anarchism.”

Moving towards Contemporary Art, the show is billed as a ‘Bemusement Park’. The global scale, diversity of installations, artworks and participating artists is unprecedented with 50 contemporary artists from 17 countries aiming to exhibit contemporary art and raise discussion about consumerism, political and environmental issues and to spur people to take action.

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

1000 lucky local people were invited to experience Dismaland before its’ opening to the general public. Concurrently the online ticket sales failed miserably, with the website crashing all day and earning it the award of  ‘the most disappointing new website’.

We first enter the premises through a cardboard security control room built by Bill Barminksi where the security staff asks the most random questions. After the clearing security, doors open to a sinister derelict place with trash, paper on the floor and mud. It almost looks like a dump. The surrounding staff members are dressed in pink hi-vis (vests) and are looking bored, miserable and haggard.  Some are holding David Shrigley’s ‘I’m an Imbecile’ balloons. When asking questions, they respond by whispering messages that are beyond understanding. Customer service is below standard and not responsive at best.

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Surrounded by murky water with a dumped riot van that has been transformed into an impromptu water fountain, a decrepit fairy-tale castle ‘shows how it feels to be a real princess’. A sinister scene of a Cinderella pumpkin crash sculpture is lit up by the swarm of paparazzi, with flashing cameras taking photo after photo of the tragic crash scene, echoing Princess Diana’s death. You may also pose with it and have your souvenir photo of the experience.

The amusements are purposely confusing – as they don’t let you win. An ESPO sign reads

‘WINNING IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED’. Arcade fans attempt miserably to score some of the bling necklaces by shooting spray cans, only to realize that they are screwed to the wall.

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Some local families were confused with Banksy’s Mediterranean Boat Ride, where the public can drive robotic boats of migrants amongst floating bodies. Kids tried to play on Paul Insect‘s overcrowded sandpit while others were desperately looking for disappearing golf balls on the impossible Mini Gulf course. Families enjoyed rides on the merry-go-round without noticing a butcher sitting next to a hanging horse draining blood with cardboard boxes marked Lasagnes (a nod to a horse food scandal in 2013).

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Alongside the rides, contemporary artworks are displayed throughout the site. There is also a large indoor space hosting 3 galleries with a selection of some of the best contemporary art. A circus tent features a freak show of strange animals from Polly Morgan and Dorcas Casey to a unicorn by Damien Hirst and a Banksy animatronic rabbit that makes the magician disappear.

The seaside and funfair themes have been given a certain twist as well: A statue of a woman being attacked by seagulls (Banksy), a giant ice cream cone (Ben Long), a wooden carved horse sculpture (Maskull Lasserre), a beach ball floating above razor sharp knives (Damien Hirst), a seaside painting showing a mother and child playing on the sand unaware of the tsunami of detritus coming toward them (Banksy).

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

Environmental issues and relationships between human and nature are also highlighted with artworks from Paco Pomet and Josh Keyes. A Banksy killer whale sculpture is jumping out of a toilet peace. Other topics addressed are on war, geopolitics, and the Arab Spring. Artists from Palestine and Israel are displayed side by side. Within the Guerilla Island, the dome presents of series of activist banners from all over the world, including drawings from Iranian cartoonist Mana Neyestani.

A bus turned into a touring Museum of Cruel Objects curated by Dr. Gavin Grindon educates the public on surveying the role of design for social control, including CCTV. And you can sign up to one of the union stalls for action. Finally there is the mind-blowing model village installation by James Cauty called The Aftermath Dislocation Principle.

The evening turned into a big party with live music while a massive show of fireworks sealed the official opening. I found the experience to be overwhelming with so much artwork to discover and actions to be taken.

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Espo. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Paul Insect . Bast. Dismaland. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Paco Pomet. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Maskull Lassarre. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Kate MacDowell. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Jessica Harrison. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Dietrich Wegner. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Damien Hirst. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Andreas Hykade. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Amir Schiby. Dismaland Art Gallery. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Dorkas Casey. Dismaland Circus. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

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Banksy. Dismaland. Thank you for visiting folks. Weston-super-Mare, UK. (photo © Butterfly)

 

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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!
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DRAN Closes “Public Execution” in London, Finally Complete

DRAN Closes “Public Execution” in London, Finally Complete

Either it will have proved to be a master class or an exhibition in hubris, says Pictures on Walls in their framing of the empty-framed show in progress by Dran in London’s Soho. Public Execution is on display and in development before you as the artist continues to work on new illustrations directly on the walls, a gradual culmination of a show that began on February 5 as a reception with cheese and wine and a primarily empty white box gallery, save the hand-painted frames on walls and ceiling serving as place-holders. Even so, the frames are only suggested locations for his cartooning, as he proceeds to paint inside and outside their confines, eventually covering every surface.

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Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

While the concept is new to the gallery setting, it is analogous to the work of street artists creating outside the gallery doors, where any passerby can observe and frequently offer an opinion or pose a question. Here the artist has helpfully painted a suitably sour gallery assistant to stare you down if her eyes happen to divert from her Macbook for a second.

“Ideally located in Soho between a sex shop, a pub and a primary school, the show is evolving on a daily basis,” says photographer and street art culture observer Sandra AKA Butterfly, who brings these exclusive images of the humorous scenes that continue to spout from Dran’s imagination. By the time the show closes today, Public Execution will be complete and the gallery will be filled with new art works. “It’s actually a ‘reversed’ show,” says Butterfly. Along with her images today, we have great shots of the developing show by photographer Julie A.

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Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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A potential knockout from Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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The piercing power of words. Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Okay, are there any questions here? Dran (Photo © Butterfly)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Turn that frown upside down. Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

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Dran (Photo © Julie A)

 

We wish to thank Julie A and Butterfly for sharing their exclusive images and observations with BSA readers.

Read more about this show at Butterfly’s site HERE.

 

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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!
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This article was also published on The Huffington Post

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ROA TOWERS : New Shots from UK, Belgium, Sweden, Mexico, Germany, Italy and the US

ROA TOWERS : New Shots from UK, Belgium, Sweden, Mexico, Germany, Italy and the US

We’re back with a slew of new ROA pieces as he continues to share the absolute best images with BSA readers while traveling around the globe. The Belgian street artist, who we refer to as an Urban Naturalist, continues his astounding world tour at a pace that few Street Artists can sustain. Right now he in Hawaii for Pow! Wow! but will soon be in New York for what we hear will be a rather amazing solo gallery show.

The prolific painter has so many fresh images for you that ROA is getting two days of postings on BSA this week. Today we go to London (UK), Werchter (Belgium), Bromölla and Nassjo in Sweden, Queretaro (Mexico), Schmalkalden (Germany), Rome (Italy), Lexington, Kentucky(US), and Las Vegas, Nevada (US). Accompanying some of the images is commentary from ROA about the experience, the context in which he created the pieces and the relevance of the subjects he chose to depict.

Werchter (Belgium)

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ROA. Werchter, Belgium. North West Walls. 2014 (photo © ROA)

As is often the case, ROA raises consciousness about the deleterious effects our everyday selfishness causes for the animal world, who we crow so loudly that we care about. While ROA could stay with comfortable subjects, he has demonstrated a long lasting dedication to the plight of animals that few social activists doing work on the street can sustain or have the stomach for. Coupled with the ceaseless dedication to honing his craft over the last few years, sometimes the result is so monumental that your jaw drops open.

This container construction is a permanent installation for NORTHWESTWALLS in Werchter, Belgium. He explains how he arrived at the subject when he was given this massive sculpture of shipping containers as canvas. “Thinking about this situation and the given element of the containers, my thoughts were directly connected to freight and legal and illegal animal trafficking of exotic animals: a questionable practice,” he says.

“Illegal trafficking is an ongoing crime and we all know to what it can lead, however in the context of legal trafficking I was thinking about how the colonies exported exotic animals in poor conditions to show in Victorian zoos. I also thought about the ironic repercussions of zoos today: how they export animals for breeding programs and how some species only exist in captivity anymore, which is a paradox. So this is how I got the idea to use the containers as cages and instead of using native animals, it became a pile of exotic animals.”

Schmalkalden (Germany)

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ROA. Schmalkalden, Germany. WallCome Festival. 2014 (photo © ROA)

ROA chose this bat as his entry in the WallCome Festival in Schmalkalden.

Sweden (Bromölla and Nassjo)

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ROA. Nassjo, Sweden. Nassjo Kommun. 2014 (photo © ROA)

“I took the train to Nassjo, where Nassjo Kommun invited me to paint a bird on the rooftop,” says ROA.

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ROA. Tyrannosaurus. Bromölla, Sweden. 2014 (photo © ROA)

“Malverket (the building) is a part of a ceramic factory that makes huge insulators, located in Bromölla, in South Sweden. ‘Bromölla boasts remains from the Stone Age, and even some findings of dinosaurs‘,” he says, quoting the WikiPedia page I painted a tyrannosaurus. Teresa and Jonathan invited me, and I do know you already shown the reportage of Henrik Haven, thank you for that! That was great.

London

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ROA. Shrew in Dulwich, London 2014 (photo © ROA)

“The London shrew in Dulwich,” he tells us, is actually a depiction of a shrew is stuck into a jar. “It happens a lot in nature that shrews crawl into empty beer bottles and can’t get out because of the slippery/smooth bottle end… they die and the rotten smell attrack other shrews to check out the bottle and on tier turn they become trapped in the bottle.”

ROA thanks Ingrid Beazley from the Dulwich Picture Gallery who invited him over to paint the Dulwich wall.

 

 

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ROA. Flea. London 2014 (photo © ROA)

“Another local animal from London, the flea,” says ROA.

Lexington, Kentucky, USA

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ROA. Lexington, KY. 2014 (photo © ROA)

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ROA. Lexington, KY. 2014 (photo © ROA)

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ROA. Lexington, KY. 2014 (photo © ROA)

“I also painted in the Bourbon Distillery District,” says ROA of his trip to Kentucky for the PHBTN Festival, “where I painted a chicken wing (as in Kentucky Fried…).”

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ROA. Lexington, KY. 2014 (photo © ROA)

ROME, Italy

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ROA. Rome, Italy. 2014 (photo © Lorenzo Gallito/BlindEyeFactory.com)

You may recall we did a previous posting on this bear piece when ROA first completed it.

ROA and An Orphaned Bear in Rome

Queretaro, Mexico

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ROA. Queretaro, Mexico. 2014 (photo © ROA)

ROA did a number of paintings of animals local to the area while in Queretaro for the Board Dripper Festival, which celebrated its fifth year in September. ROA would like to says thanks to Isauro for the hospitality.

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ROA. Queretaro, Mexico. 2014 (photo © ROA)

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ROA. Queretaro, Mexico. 2014 (photo © ROA)

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ROA. Queretaro, Mexico. 2014 (photo © ROA)

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ROA. Queretaro, Mexico. 2014 (photo © ROA)

Las Vegas, Nevada (USA)

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ROA. Las Vegas, Nevada. 2014 (photo © ROA)

ROA painted this horned lizard for the Life is Beautiful festival, and he extends his thanks to Rom and Charlotte.

 

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Borondo Studio Visit Before “Animal” Solo Show

Borondo Studio Visit Before “Animal” Solo Show

Spanish Street Artist, expressionist, painter/multi-media explorer Borondo has been on a lot of people’s list lately because his wide-eyed and fearless inquisitions are taking him into many disciplines, and he’s doing most of them incredibly.

He’s excited about his new solo show at Rex Romae Gallery in Shoreditch, London this Friday the 6th, and we’re excited because the photographer Butterfly is sharing these fresh new images with BSA readers. Following the shots you can read more about her visit to the Borondo studios.

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Borondo. “Animal” Rex Romae Gallery. Shoreditch, London. (photo © Butterfly)

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Borondo. “Animal” Rex Romae Gallery. Shoreditch, London. (photo © Butterfly)

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Borondo. “Animal” Rex Romae Gallery. Shoreditch, London. (photo © Butterfly)

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Borondo. “Animal” Rex Romae Gallery. Shoreditch, London. (photo © Butterfly)

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Borondo. “Animal” Rex Romae Gallery. Shoreditch, London. (photo © Butterfly)

From Butterfly’s visit to Borondo’s studio:

“We visited the studio of prolific Spanish artist Gonzalo Borondo ahead of his upcoming solo exhibition ‘Animal’.  Curated by Rom Levy, founder of  RexRomae, and Charlotte Dutoit of Justkids, the show will be set up at the London Newcastle Project Space in Shoreditch . It’s Borondo’s most ambitious show to date and the atmosphere in the studio is buzzing and fun. Prolific is an euphemism when we see the variety of techniques and medium used: wood, mesh, glass, videos and so on…click HERE to continue reading and to see more photos.

Our thanks to Butterfly for sharing this with BSA Readers.

 

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50 Ways to Map The City, Per Street and Graffiti Artists

D.I.Y. Cartography in the Rawest Section of Somerset

Street Art is intrinsically bound with its neighborhood and location in a city. Context and placement are key, establishing its relation to a place. So when a Street Artist is asked to create art about mapping a place, it is fascinating to see how they perceive it and with what manner and medium they present it.

In a new exhibition opening in London this month, the time honored study and practice of cartography ventures into the conceptual as well as the physical, and we find that for many artists the street is as much about poetry and perception as it is about aerosol and wheat-pasted paper.

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Petro’s sculpture on the left with Gasisus sculpture on the right.  Aryz, Ron English, Malarko, Augustine Kofie, on the background wall. Filippo Minelli on the right wall. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © Rafa Suñen)

“Mapping the City”, now going up at the Somerset House presents the work of 50 artists whose roots lie in creating work for the urban space, one defined by paved streets configured by planners and traversed by citizenry. More than this the artists here broaden the job description of cartographer to one who captures energy, movement, emotion, imagined storylines and life paths.

With ubiquitous smart phones at the ready we increasingly find that mapping the world has become a given, removing some of its mystery. The tracking of GPS is joined by the physically surveying Google machine and countless public/private war/profit apparatus that have been loosed across and above the skin of the globe to trace all roads and streets, quantify topography, measure depths – even gauge the volume of rivers and density of forests.

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Installation process shot. Gasius sculpture on the foreground. Installers working on Petros’ sculpture. Aryz, Ron English, Shepard Fairey, Malarko, Augustine Kofie, Shantell Martin, Husk MitNavn on the background wall. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

And then there are the people. “The city is a living entity,” says Rafael Schacter, curator of the show from the arts organization A(by)P, who sees the city as something far more than a clever configuration of lines. “The city changes every day, every hour of the day. It is constantly modifying itself. And it is fully alive in the way it reacts and responds to our actions. It is endlessly fascinating in the same way humans are. They can be exhausting, they can be destructive. But they contain endless possibilities too.”

It’s this same immersion into street life that draws artists to create in public, and knowing how to accept and embrace its evolution is what brings the veterans back. MOMO literally painted many streets in one continuous line that formed the letters of his nom de la rue in a 2006 tag that spread across the bottom of New York’s central island and it is presented as a map in this show.

Brooklyn Street Art: One of the artists in your show, MOMO, created an enormous tag in Manhattan – although it was only legible when the route was retraced upon a map. Is he crazy?
Rafael Schacter: He is crazy. A crazy genius. Although you still can see the marks he made on the streets of Manhattan years after he painted it! He recently re-walked the route and re-mapped the existing line. As I said; Crazy. Genius.

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MOMO “Tag Manhattan” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

“Retracing the tag line was cool,” MOMO tells us. “What I noticed is how much new sidewalk cement has gone in a lot of the line was eaten up by that,” he says, observing that a city is anything but static and often regenerative. “It is interesting how quickly a city replaces all of its cells,” he remarks about the ongoing repaving that characterizes the city. Were there more changes MOMO noticed in the 7 years between tagging? Yes. “Other stuff, like all the shiny new developments that are making Manhattan look like a mall.”

While there are some commonalities among the selected artists who are participating in this project, there is quite a variety of approaches to the street, as Schacter invited Street Artists, graffiti artists, public artists, designers, painters, illustrators, and billboard jammers. He says the multiplicity of interpretation was an intentional decision.

“For us, the most important thing was to have the whole range of artists we love and who are producing work in the public sphere included in the exhibition. As such, and as you say, it really is a very wide variety of artists, from graffiti bombers to conceptual artists, from muralists to urban explorers. With all of them, however, the crucial element within their practice is the public sphere, the richness of the city and urban space. This is the line that goes through all of their work, even if they may at first seem widely different.”

 

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 Chu. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

Chu, an Argentine Street Artist and muralist whose colorfully painted four paneled abstraction remixes and jumbles the lines and shapes and removes all text, his map is meant to communicate the kinetic nature of street life. “I tried to create a map of Buenos Aires marking my usual movements around the city. I am used to moving around it a lot, from one side to other, and sometimes it is really chaotic and stressful. However it is also really where I get a lot of inspiration.”

A viewer of Chu’s graphic representation may be reminded of map making software and apps – possibly because of his graphic design training and his work as an animation director and illustrator in the digital sphere. He says that his digital art experience has grafted onto his vision of the physical street, “especially because I am working with layers and some of my choices of shapes come from that experience.”

Even as a painter, you can see the influence of the digital design world in Chu’s map. He says that when he thinks of city streets, he does see in his mind an aerial view of them from up above, but there is much more.

“My artwork for the exhibition is a kind of aerial abstract view of the city,” says Chu, “When trying to understand the city street more mentally, I believe today, it is something more complex than it was before. It is like some kind of constellation or hypertext thing that grows up in all directions, with axis and tons of layers.”

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CHU “Buenos Aires” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

Housed in a section of Somerset House that has been closed off from the public for 150 years, the new exhibit is also its first and most visitors will never have hiked through the still unpolished space. It seems like the perfectly shabby cream-colored raw environment that graff writers and Street Artists might feel comfortable making art for. “It’s in the process of happening,” says Schacter as the team moves around him and up ladders to place the maps and straddle patches of exposed wall. According to Rafael, even the ceilings of the 18th century rooms are being restored to their original splendor, “with Yak Hair in the plaster!”

Brooklyn Street Art: Will people need to follow a map to find this show in the new wing of the Somerset House?
Rafael Schacter: Ha! Kind of. Our space hasn’t currently even got a name as it’s so new – and so old at the same time. We’re going to make big wooden arrows to make it clear but we kind of hope people get lost too, and then eventually find us!

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Detail of Gasius sculpture on the foreground. LA artist Cali Thornhill De Witt displays his flag pieces in the background. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © Rafa Suñen)

Brooklyn Street Art: Not all participants strictly adhered to the realm of cartography in the conception or execution of their map. Brad Downey appears to have drawn a face. Imagine what you would have gotten if this was a show about clouds.
Rafael Schacter: You’re right – the responses to our call for work has been super super varied. But that’s exactly what we wanted – that variety of work. We didn’t want just one understanding of the call, which was simply “map your space”.  Brad’s work is about finding visuals within maps, whilst others have tried to find maps within visuals! It is all simply about a different appreciation of space from the one we see in the top down, topographic, scientific standard.

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Brad Downey. Face (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

The Brooklyn Street Artist Swoon contributed one of her iconic images of a woman whose entire form is filled with what appears to be kutis and stilt houses along winding streets from top to bottom. Based on the Thai capital Bangkok, it is an example of the inner world Swoon is known for creating, reflective of a character’s history.

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Installation process shot. Swoon. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

Brooklyn Street Art: It is always interesting to see a Swoon portrait that contains the city and the streets within the body of the subject, isn’t it?
Rafael Schacter: There’s a great quote from Swoon about her work being about the desire to more carefully examine the “relationship of people to their built environment”. Her work here is a prime example of this, a work in which the body and the city become inexorably intertwined – the experience, as she says, “of becoming part of the fabric of the city” visually mapped out.

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Installation process shot. Chu, Isaurao Huizar, Swoon and Mike Ballard. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

Brooklyn Street Art: Can you talk about the film/s you have discovered and will be showing that fall in with the theme of map-making?
Rafael Schacter: The films we’re going to be showing are by a filmmaker named Marc Isaacs. They’re both set in London, both exploring the lives of “ordinary” Londoners. It is a very bottom-up, grass roots understanding of people’s lives.  That is exactly what we’re looking to do in the show – to explore the subjective and the hidden nature of the city.

Brooklyn Street Art: Who will be doing an artist talk about the project?
Rafael Schacter: We’re really excited about this. Our artist talk will be featuring Eltono, Filippo Minelli and Caleb Neelon. Again, a real diversity of artists and a diversity of backgrounds. Each of them have a great understanding of the public sphere and we’re excited to see what they will present.

Brooklyn Street Art: Given worldwide mapping and its ubiquity on devices we must ask this: In the future, will it be possible to get lost?
Rafael Schacter: I hope so! As the artist Itso said, and I paraphrase, true places can never be mapped.

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Installation process shot. El Tono working on his sculpture. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

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El Tono. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © Rafa Suñen)

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Installation process shot. Herbert Baglione on the right. El Tono on the left with EGS on the background room. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

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Installation process shot. Remed. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

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Installation process shot. Sixe Paredes on the left. Filippo Minelli on Center. Remed and OX on the right background room. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

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Installation process shot. Detail of Filippo Minelli’s map. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © courtesy A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes with Detail of Filippo Minelli’s map. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © Rafa Suñen)

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Detail of Cleo Peterson map. “Mapping The City” Somerset House. London, UK. (photo © Rafa Suñen)

 

“Mapping The City” Opens tomorrow for the general public at Somerset House in London, UK. Click HERE for schedule of events, hours, directions and other details.

PARTICIPATING ARTISTS

108 (Italy) Aryz (Spain)
Augustine Kofie (USA) Boris Tellegen (The Netherlands)
Caleb Neelon (USA) Cali Thornhill Dewitt (USA)
Chu (Argentina) Cleon Peterson (USA)
Daniel K. Sparkes (UK) Egs (Finland)
Ekta [Daniel Götesson] (Sweden) Eltono (France)
Erosie (The Netherlands) Filippo Minelli (Italy)
Gold Peg (UK) Graphic Surgery (The Netherlands)
Herbert Baglione (Brazil) Honet (France)
Horfee (France) HuskMitNavn (Denmark)
Ian Strange [Kid Zoom] (Australia) Interesni Kazki (Ukraine)
Isauro Huizar (Mexico) Isaac Tin Wei Lin (USA)
James Jarvis (UK) Jurne (USA)
Ken Sortais [Cony] (France) Les Frères Ripoulain (France)
Lucas Cantu (Mexico) Lush (Australia)
Malarko (UK) Martin Tibabuzo (Argentina)
Mike Ballard (UK) MOMO (USA)
Nano4814 (Spain) Nug (Sweden)
OX (France) Pablo Limon (Spain)
Petro (UK) Remed (France)
Remio (USA) Roids (UK)
Ron English (USA) Russell Maurice (UK
Shantell Martin (UK) Shepard Fairey (USA)
Sixe Paredes (Spain) Susumu Mukai (Japan)
Swoon (USA) Tim Head (UK)
Vova Vorotniov (Ukraine) Will Sweeney (UK)

 

Mapping the City
22 January – 15 February 2015
Somerset House, New Wing
Admission: Free

Contemporary cartographic art by international street and graffiti artists to be the first exhibition in Somerset House’s recently opened New Wing

 

 

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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!
 
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A Preview Of “Mapping The City” at Somerset House (LONDON)

A Preview Of “Mapping The City” at Somerset House (LONDON)

Until you get lost in a city, you really do not know its true nature. And possibly your own.

Only at the moment of realization that you really have lost your way, your bearings, your inner compass, however temporarily, do you get a genuine sense of a place and your place in it.  What are these buildings, who are these people, what is that smell, why is that horn honking, is there a bathroom nearby, do I have any money, what do I do? Perhaps even “who am I?”.  No, you’re too confident and self assured for that.

 

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MOMO “Tag Manhattan” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

We’ve trekked through New York City thousands of miles by now, worn out many shoes, taken countless wrong turns, and been lost numerous times. It’s part of the adventure really. Especially in the 80s when it was all new to us; cacophonic and crazy and perplexing, unnerving, and seemingly neverending. Now, even with GPS on the phone it is completely possible to get lost.  And if you are not lost, you know it is your responsibility to keep your eyes open for someone who is.  It’ll happen.

This week we’re excited for London folks who get to look at a map, fifty of them actually. Curated by Rafael Schacter and his collaborative arts organization named A(by)P, Mapping the City is an ingenious little bit of inspiration and conceptualizing of our sense of place.

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Augustine Kofie “Overcast Angeles” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

Who are these maps created by? Street Artists of course, as well as others from the graffiti art scene.

And these wildcats have taken many liberties with the assignment of “please make a map”. So many in fact that some of these maps would get you lost even further if you were to consult them. But there is plenty to be learned from them nonetheless. These maps may provide valuable insights into the highways and byways of some of these artist’s brains, now that you think of it, you beguiling detective.

The inaugural exhibition opens the New Wing of Somerset House – a wing that has been closed to the public for a century and a half, or roughly the time you have to wait for a cable repair person to come to your apartment. Rafael and his team are busy installing maps right now for the January 22nd opening, and we will have great “install” images and an interview with him next week for you to enjoy. But for right now, have a look at these examples of cartographic excellence from an international array of established and emerging artists for Mapping the City.

(full list of artists at the end of this posting)

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CHU “Buenos Aires” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Will Sweeney “Cabott Square” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Brad Downey. Face (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Caleb Neelon “Pickerville” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Shepard Fairey “Berlin Tower” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Jurne “Covalence” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Mike Ballard “The Ultra Poet” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Goldpeg “London is Burning” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Cleon Peterson “The Return” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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Aryz “Map” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

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OX “Paris” (photo © courtesy of A(by)P)

PARTICIPATING ARTISTS

108 (Italy) Aryz (Spain)
Augustine Kofie (USA) Boris Tellegen (The Netherlands)
Caleb Neelon (USA) Cali Thornhill Dewitt (USA)
Chu (Argentina) Cleon Peterson (USA)
Daniel K. Sparkes (UK) Egs (Finland)
Ekta [Daniel Götesson] (Sweden) Eltono (France)
Erosie (The Netherlands) Filippo Minelli (Italy)
Gold Peg (UK) Graphic Surgery (The Netherlands)
Herbert Baglione (Brazil) Honet (France)
Horfee (France) HuskMitNavn (Denmark)
Ian Strange [Kid Zoom] (Australia) Interesni Kazki (Ukraine)
Isauro Huizar (Mexico) Isaac Tin Wei Lin (USA)
James Jarvis (UK) Jurne (USA)
Ken Sortais [Cony] (France) Les Frères Ripoulain (France)
Lucas Cantu (Mexico) Lush (Australia)
Malarko (UK) Martin Tibabuzo (Argentina)
Mike Ballard (UK) MOMO (USA)
Nano4814 (Spain) Nug (Sweden)
OX (France) Pablo Limon (Spain)
Petro (UK) Remed (France)
Remio (USA) Roids (UK)
Ron English (USA) Russell Maurice (UK
Shantell Martin (UK) Shepard Fairey (USA)
Sixe Paredes (Spain) Susumu Mukai (Japan)
Swoon (USA) Tim Head (UK)
Vova Vorotniov (Ukraine) Will Sweeney (UK)

 

Mapping the City
22 January – 15 February 2015
Somerset House, New Wing
Admission: Free

Contemporary cartographic art by international street and graffiti artists to be the first exhibition in Somerset House’s recently opened New Wing

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BSA Images Of The Week: 06.22.14

BSA Images Of The Week: 06.22.14

 

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It’s not all going to the dogs, peeps – it just looks like it sometimes. We start this week with a ferocious one from Zimer, and follow it by a chihuahua that it could probably eat for lunch. Dog eat dog, yo.

Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring ACNE, City Kitty, Crummy Gummy, EC13, Ema, FAS, Hitnes, Insurgency Inc., Irony and Boe, Kid Acne, Lajaxx, Myth, Not Art, Ozmo, Peter Kirill, Specter, and Zimer.

Top Image >> Zimer (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Irony and Boe Collaboration in East London, UK. June 2014 (photo © Gary Hunter)

Commentary from Gary Hunter, who sent this big dog from London:

“The chihuahua is partly a comment on changing demographic due to development overspilling from the spreading consumerism of nearby financial district Canary Wharf. Located just north of the Isle of ‘Dogs’ in East London the piece is facing ‘Barking’ a town in Essex, just by the A13 a main road in and out of London.

There also used to be a very big Spratt’s (a manufacturer originally from Cincinnati, Ohio) dog biscuit factory nearby, now warehouse apartment conversions. I photographed the ‘model’ (coincidentally called Hunter and owned by London artist Cate Halpin) in great detail in my studio on a very high end Hasselblad digital camera, to bring out every aspect. Irony and Boe then transposed it brick by brick for their painted artwork.

This work is part of ‘Changing Spaces’ a a community cohesion project in east London’s Tower Hamlet’s district, one of the city’s most deprived, yet diverse boroughs – facilitating understanding of the immediate environment, important history, trade and migration.” – GH

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FAS. Please help ID the rest of the tags. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Not Art (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Pete Kirill tribute to the great Sophia Loren. (photo © Cesar Miesses)

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Artists Unknown. Save the elephants! (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Specter and Ozmo collaboration. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Myth (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Lajaxx (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Insurgency Inc (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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City Kitty (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Crummy Gummy. In Los Angeles, CA. “I’m a big fan of H.R. Giger and this piece actually made me a little sad. But I thought it was a cool way to reference his passing” Lisa V (photo © Lisa V)

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ACNE (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Hitnes wanted to create the perfect shade of color to highlight the eye of the bunny for the piece he did on a roof top in East Williasmburg this week. Here is how it all began…this plus a little water. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Hitnes. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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EC13 New tile installation in Granada, Spain. June 2014. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Kid Acne (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Kid Acne (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Kid Acne (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Kid Acne and Ema are from England and they are visiting NYC and wasting no time on the streets. At the same time they have been showing a very poor judgment with the placing of their pieces by going over many writer’s tags. We like them both but are surprised by their selection of places to wheat paste their art since they are not new to the streets of New York, indeed we might say that they are even veterans of the streets of NYC given this we think they should know better.

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Ema (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Ema (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Ema (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Untitled. Summer 2014, Brooklyn, NYC. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

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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!

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Images Of The Week: 06.08.14

Images Of The Week: 06.08.14

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Dude and Dudette it’s not even officially summer (June 21) but New York streets are off in the deep end of the public pool with all these new backflips and cannonballs and arched dive art in the streets. Can someone please say UNPRECEDENTED? Everybody jump in!

Here our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Bifido, Case Ma’Claim, City Kitty, Crummy Gummy, Dain, Damien Mitchell, Dee Dee, EC13, FKDL, JAZ, Jerk Face, Lambros, Mark Samsonovich, Pixel Pancho, Pyramid Oracle, Rubin, SheWolf, Skount, Solus, UAI, and Zio Siegler.

Top Image >> Case Ma’Claim and Pixel Pancho collaboration for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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A sonic POP reverberated through the streets this week when this duet happened between Case Ma’Claim and Pixel Pancho at The Bushwick Collective. Detail. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Lambros combined nightmares into this one hideous hybrid. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Dain is dressed for success. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Damien Mitchell pays tribute to the divine Nina Simone at The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Pyramid Oracle levitates sagely. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Dee Dee (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Mark Samsonovich. This happened to me one time when I ate an entire bag of jelly beans and then washed them down with orange soda. Same thing. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Mark Samsonovich. We come in peace. Would you like a banana? (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Bifido. New conceptual piece form his series “Don’t Forget To Play” in what appears to be an abandoned and derelict public park in Naples, Italy. (photo © Bifido)

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SheWolf (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Looks like FKDL was in town this week with his mix of 1950s nostalgia and idealized female collages. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Detail of FKDL wall for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Crummy Gummy features out of work actor ET looking for options on the streets of Los Angeles. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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The Irish Solus left a love letter to BK and The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Skount new street work in Barcelona, Spain. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Jerk Face and the Cookie Monster for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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City Kitty (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Rubin for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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EC13 new piece in Huetor Vega, Spain. The artist continues to explore his non-figurative expressions with new mediums and surfaces. This placement is immaculate. (photo © Patricia Fernandez)

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Zio Siegler (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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JAZ is seen here at work in Berlin on his new mural in conjunction with his solo show currently on view at the BC Gallery.  (photo © Phillipp Barth)

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Jaz. The completed mural in Berlin.  (photo © Phillipp Barth)

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Untitled. The Empire State Building photographed from Brooklyn, NY. June 2014. Via Instagram and iPhone. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

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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!

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Images Of The Week: 06.01.14

Images Of The Week: 06.01.14

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BOS, Bushwick Collective, Juicy Fest, RedHook Studio Tours, Northside Festival, Welling Court… BK and QNS are bombed with artists in June – and today’s throwdown in Bushwick is just one tab on the 12-pack to pop and spray all over your friends on a hot summer day. When it comes to street art we’re in this new legal mural phase right now and when you head out to Bushwick Open Studios today you will see freshly painted and in-process walls. Don’t worry, we’re still seeing a lot of uncensored freewheeling self-selecting artistic installations of the unsanctioned variety – and that sector is alive and well.  See you out in the street!

Here our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring

Adam Fujita, BustArt, Cb23, Chris Dyer, Dain, Dasic, Don Rimx, Ethos, FoxxFace, Jerk Face, Labrona, Meca, Meer Sau, Milo, Muro, Osch, Princess Hijab, QRST, Ricardo Cabret and Son, Sem, Skewville, Stinkfish, Stovington 23, Txemy, Vexta, Zaira

Top Image >> Dasic for the Juicy Art Festival. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Skewville (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Adam Fujita for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Princess Hijab has a new installation in the Paris Metro (photo © Adrien Chretien)

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Princess Hijab. Detail of the above installation. Paris, France. (photo © Adrien Chretien)

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Are you feeling this felt lava lamp? Milo calls what she does Graffeltti. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Osch new installation in London’s Brick Lane. (photo © Massimo Filippi)

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Dain (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Sem (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Ethos new piece in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (photo © Claudio Ethos)

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QRST (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Don Rimx, Ricardo Cabret and Son for the Juicy Art Festival. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Labrona new indoor mural in Montreal, Canada. (photo © Labrona)

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Vexta for The Bushwick Collective. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Stovington23 new corporate takeover in Eastbourne, UK. (photo © Stovington23)

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BustArt and Zaira new stencil work in Amsterdam. (photo © Bustart/Zaira)

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BustArt and Zaira new stencil work in Amsterdam. (photo © Bustart/Zaira)

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Muro . Txemy . Stinkfish . Meca . Done for the Juicy Art Festival. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Meer Sau in Salzburg, Austria. (photo © Meer Sau)

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Jerk Face completed his Tom and Jerry piece in Williamsburg. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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cb23 and Foxx Face collaboration. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Chris Dyer in Denver, Colorado. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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Untitled. Greenpoint, Brooklyn. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

If you are lucky enough to be in NYC this Sunday, get out of the house and head over to East Williamsburg and Bushwick. You’d have the chance to see many of these murals in person and perhaps and artist or two while applying the final touches to his or her wall. Click HERE for more info on The Bushwick Collective block party taking place today. And HERE for the Juicy Art Fest which is not happening until June 5, 6 and 7 but artists are currently busy at work on their murals and it is only a short walk between the two.

 

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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!

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Sixe Paredes ‘Futurismo Ancestral’ Opens at Somerset House in London

Sixe Paredes ‘Futurismo Ancestral’ Opens at Somerset House in London

Starting today, for one week only, the Andes will be inside the Somerset House.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

London’s spectacular neo-classical home of arts and culture along the River Thames will play host to an all-encompassing exhibition experience mounted by the Barcelona-born graffiti artist Six Paredes in his tribute to Peruvian and Andean culture. Futurismo Ancestral: An Offering to Peru by Sixe Paredes has been inspired by the traditional and the modern, and aims to meld the two together surreally, and really.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

For weeks we have been seeing the progress of a loosely banded consortium of brother street artists laying plans and constructing exhibition elements beneath the fountained public courtyard. Today the public can experience a series of walkways leading to large-scale and smaller works evoking the rich color and symbols of the region; tapestries, totem sculptures, ceramics and quipus (a system of knotted cords known as ‘talking knots’), masks and fluorescent chichas (posters).

“We are taking over three spaces at Somerset House, essentially the whole of the lower floor of the building,” explains Rafael Schacter of A(by)P, an organization that enables artists to produce events and exhibit work and who organized the installation with his partners and the Somerset House. Built and installed by a “dream team” of urban and street artists and students from University College London, where Schacter teaches, the exhibition is complemented with daily interactive events including Peruvian and Andean food, music, film, and performance.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

Futurismo Ancestral is born from the travels of Sixe Paredes to Peru beginning in 2009 and his adoration of the richness he experienced in the culture compelled him to bring it back to share. One of the six street artists featured on the river façade of the Tate Modern six years ago along with Faile, JR, Blu, Os Gemeos, and Nunca for it’s pivotal street art exhibition, Six Paredes completed his most recent large scale wall just last month at the Biennale D’Art Urbain in Charleroi, Belgium.  Schacter, who co-curated the Street Art expo at that Tate show and who authored The World Atlas of Street Art & Graffiti with Yale in 2013, says that this return is Paredes first major solo show in the UK .

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

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Sixe Paredes spotting the future on the horizon. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

During the preparation for this much anticipated and lively show, BSA had the opportunity to speak with both Six Paredes and Rafael Schacter about the origins, inspirations, and preparations for Futurismo Ancestral.

Brooklyn Street Art: After touring Peru and being exposed to such eye-popping color, isn’t it surprising to be in such a grey northern city like London?
Sixe Paredes: It was not surprising for me to come here and find myself in a grey city because this color predominates in so many cities in Europe and so many European cities prohibit murals and even have specialized brigades set up to clean and remove color. Throughout my journey in different regions of Peru I’ve seen a lot of color but color can be found in all the different cultures of the world, when they maintain their primordial essence.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Sandra Butterfly)

Brooklyn Street Art: Rafael, can you tell us about Futurismo Ancestral and how it came about?
Rafael Schacter: Futurismo Ancestral is all about the connection between the traditional and the contemporary, the fusion of the Peruvian visual culture and craft tradition with the visual palette so unique to Sixe Paredes himself. Since I last worked with Sixe in the UK, he has been living in between Peru and his hometown of Barcelona, he has become obsessed with the visual culture of the region and has learned the techniques of ceramic and textile production with famous artisans and artists throughout the region. This exhibition is about bringing together the deep history and heritage of Peruvian visual culture, and his love for this tradition with his unique, colorful, distinct style in an all embracing, multifaceted manner.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

Brooklyn Street Art: Sixe Paredes, you have already been incorporating a certain minimalism into your aesthetics over the past ten years. Is it difficult to merge that understated quality with the vibrant enthusiasm of Peruvian and Andean folk?
Sixe Paredes: My art has always been characterized by the agglomeration of shapes and colors. Throughout different periods I started introducing more elements, such as the circuits, which led my paintings towards another dimension – this dimension enhanced my painting, allowing for other interpretations of my work. In recent years I have been synthesizing some of my series. I like to play with this idea because it leaves more room for reflection and I don’t need as many elements to express myself. Some of these elements are iconic to my work, such as crests or beaks which have always been in my compositions and can be found there today.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

Brooklyn Street Art: The work here is simultaneously modern and folk – with the bold colors and raw patterning and symbols combined with a certain minimalism. Rafael, can you walk us through the spaces in a way that helps translate this convivial duality in an exhibition space.
Rafael Schacter: Somerset House is really an amazing location for us to be working in, we are both proud and excited to be working here! After you have exited our introductory area, our visitors will go outside into the Lighwells, an amazing outside space which has been used for films such as Sherlock Holmes among others; within this arched space, we have built a series of 3 meter high trapezoidal arches – shapes which are highly significant in Inca culture. Acting as a rite of passage, as a journey from one sacred space to another, visitors well make their way into what is called the Deadhouse, an underground catacomb which exists directly below the famous Somerset House courtyard. This space, aptly, will function as a sacred temple space, within which Sixe’s ceramics, quipus and tapestries will be housed.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Rafa Suñen)

Brooklyn Street Art: Not only are the color palettes from the traditional Peruvian culture warm, so too are the materials. Can you talk about the warmer, more earthen properties of wood, of yarn, and hand made masks – and how they affect your work?
Sixe Paredes: Peru has had a considerable influence on my painting palette, bringing more color to it and motivating me to use new mediums, materials and techniques, some of which have endured since ancient times. I always wanted to move towards a new path, a more ancestral path, revalidating primal techniques through a contemporary perspective.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

Brooklyn Street Art: You have a stellar group supporting this one week event – some of these folks have had big shows of their own so it’s good to see them supporting another artist.
Rafael Schacter: One of the key things about A(by)P is that we want to be for artists by artists. We don’t want to simply get in a bunch of contractors to assist in bringing the project to life but want rather to recreate the group dynamic and energy that is so crucial to these artists’ worlds. As such, for every project, we want to bring the artist’s family together to help bring it to life; in that way, the creative juices and creative possibilities can flow in a much more organic manner. And not only that, but all these artists on the team are people who we will  continue to work with in the future on solo shows of their own.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

For Sixe’s show for example, we really have got a dream team working together, a group who like you say are all artists of massive acclaim themselves. Both Eltono and Nano4814 are two of my favourite artists in the world; Eltono has just had a superb solo homecoming show in Madrid at Slowtrack and Nano4814 and insane solo show at the Delimbo Gallery in Sevilla. Pablo Limon, our exhibition designer is one of the most amazing makers I have ever come across, a creative genius. And Lucas Cantu, who is working on our graphics, branding and exhibition production, is the director of the Savvy Studios as well as the founder of the Nrmal Festival in Mexico.  As I said, the dream team! And then alongside this we have had amazing support from the students of University College London, who have all been absolutely incredible.

 

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

Brooklyn Street Art: Many Street Artists are bringing the animal world into their work today and sometimes artists will say they are giving the animals a voice to speak to us. How have animals been important in your compositions?
Six Paredes: In my case, the animal theme has been present in my work for many years, and this partly because of the admiration I feel for them. For me, among the most fascinating creatures of the animal kingdom are birds, mainly because of the wide variety of species, thousands of colours and silhouettes – and their relationship to the celestial and to flight. In terms of my compositions, this theme is important to me because it reminds us that we are also animals within the same world.

Brooklyn Street Art: In what way do you think of your work as something that evokes the future?
Six Paredes: I think my work evokes the future because it merges two different visions, the ancient and the contemporary and the bond between them which leads us to reflect about many of the things that humans have left on their way and some of them I think would be important to remember.

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Sandra Butterfly)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Sandra Butterfly)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © A(by)P)

brooklyn-street-art-sixe-paredes-sandra-butterfly-somerset-house-london-05-14-web-1

Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Sandra Butterfly)

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Sixe Paredes. “Futurismo Ancestral” Somerset House. April 2014. London, UK (photo © Sandra Butterfly)

Sixe Paredes Futurismo Ancestral: An Offering To Peru at Somerset House in London, UK.  Click HERE for more information on this exhibition.

 

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