Heading into the 4th of July we reflect upon patriotism, our declaration of independence from England, and Britain’s new declaration of independence from the EU. Are there similarities?
Now, we’re all off the park for a barbecue! Where is the frisbee? Where are those hotdog buns?
And here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Agostino Iacurci, Alaniz, Aron Belka, Buttsup, Float Art, Gilf!, King, London Kaye, Pixel Pancho, QRST, Reed B More, Sipros, and WK Interact.
Our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring 3rd World Pirate, A Pill NYC, Anglo, Augustine Kofie, Balu, CB23, City Kitty, Icy & Sot, Jerk Face, Jetski, LX One, Solus, Swiz, and WK Interact
A lot of people thought so, and the rise of commercial festivals and commissioned public/private mural programs probably brought more artists to more walls than in recent history. Judging from the In Box, 2016 is going to break more records. Enormous, polished, fully realized and presented, murals can hold a special role in a community and transform a neighborhood, even a city.
But they are not the “organic” Street Art that draws us into the dark in-between places in a city, or at its margins.
We keep our eyes open for the small, one-off, idiosyncratic, uncommissioned, weirdo work as well, as it can carry clues about the culture and reveal a sage or silly solo voice. It also just reinforces the feeling that the street is still home to an autonomous free-for-all of ideas and opinions and wandering passions. For us it is still fascinating to seek out and discover the one-of-a-kind small wheatpastes, stencils, sculptures, ad takeovers, collages, and aerosol sprayed pieces alongside the enormous and detailed paintings that take days to complete.
The main image above is from a vinyl subway advertisement that was high-jacked and we published it in February of this year on our Images of the Week posting. It’s small, personal, and very effective as you can see someone suspiciously similar to Batman is jumping out of the mouth of someone looking awfully similar to Hedwig of “Angry Inch” fame.
Of the 10,000 or so images photographer Jaime Rojo took in 2015, here are a selection 140+ of the best images from his travels through streets looking for unpermissioned and sanctioned art.
Brooklyn Street Art 2015 Images of the Year by Jaime Rojo
Brooklyn Street Art 2015 Images of the Year by Jaime Rojo includes the following artists;
365xlos43, Amanda Marie, Andreas Englund, Augustine Kofie, Bisser, Boijeot, Renauld, Bordaloli, Brittany, BunnyM, Case Maclaim, Casg, Cash4, CDRE, Clet, Cost, Curve, Dain, Dal East, Dan Budnik, Dan Witz, David Walker, DeeDee, Dennis McNett, Don Rimx, Ricardo Cabret, LNY, Alex Seel, Mata Ruda, Don’t Fret, Dot Dot Dot, ECB, El Mac, El Sol25, Ella & Pitr, Eric Simmons, Enest Zacharevic, Martha Cooper, Martin Whatson, Ever, Faile, Faith47, Findac, Futura, Gaia, Gilf!, Hanksy, Hellbent, Hot Tea, How & Nosm, Icy and Sot, Inti, Invader, Isaac Cordal, James Bullough, Janet Dickson, Jef Aerosol, Jilly Ballistic, Joe Iurato, John Fekner, Le Diamantaire, Li Hill, LMNOPI, London Kaye, Low Brow, Marina Capdevilla, Miss Van, Mr. Prvrt, Mr. Toll, Myth, Nafir, Nemos, Never Crew, Nick Walker, Nina Pandolofo, Old Broads, Oldy, Ollio, Os Gemeos, Owen Dippie, Paper Skaters, Pet Bird, Kashink, Smells, Cash4, PichiAvo, Pixel Pancho, QRST, ROA, Ron English, Rubin415, Saner, Sean 9 Lugo, Shai Dahan, Shepard Fairey, Sheryo & The Yok, Sinned, Sipros, Skewville, Slikor, Smells, Sweet Toof, Snowden, Edward Snowden, Andrew Tider, Jeff Greenspan, Specter, Stray Ones, Sweet Toof, Swil, Willow, Swoon, The Outings Project, Toney De Pew, Tristan Eaton, Various & Gould, Vermibus, Wane, Wk Interact
BSA was proud to co-sponsor the talk with DAZE, LEE Quinones, and Jane Dickson for the special reception at DAZE’s “The City is My Muse” show currently on exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York, hosted by Sean Corcoran. The three are vital to the historical thread that reaches back to NY’s earliest graff days and it was evident from seeing their newest works as they each presented them on screen that they refuse to be nostalgic about the city – but prefer to be on top of it. Case in point was Lee’s opening the following night that showcased his new mural on the ceiling at the Indigo Hotel – his Sistine Chapel if you will.
Invader finished his 42 piece wave of tile installations in New York, according to reports, Banksy struck out with political pieces addressing immigration and xenophobia (videos at end of this posting), and Gilf! wrapped the façade of a Williamsburg bar with “gentrification in progress” tape to mark its death by market forces. As artists continue to grapple with socio/political events, the art of the street keeps mutating forward.
Side note: “Images of the Week” takes a hiatus for the next few weeks thanks to special Holiday programming. It returns in 2016.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Banksy, Bunny M, City Kitty, Cost, Daze, Dee Dee, Gilf!, Invader, Jaye Moon, Jordan Seiler, KET, Labrona, Lee Quinones, Lex56, Mint&Serf, Never, Pet Bird, Read, Sipros, Specter, Wing, and WK Interact.
Specter was in France last month with FKDL and Upian, among others. Here are some examples of paintings and ad takeovers in Paris as well as an abandoned factory called La Rodia in Besancon. The Brooklyn based artist tells us that “It was a trying time to be there but supporting my friends and creating some colorful distractions was more important.”
From The Guardian:
“Street artist Banksy has painted a depiction of Apple founder Steve Jobs on a wall in a migrant and refugee camp in France known as the Calais ‘Jungle’. The artist, who has never revealed his identity, released a rare public statement challenging the perception that migrants and refugees from Syria are a drain on Western economies, UK media reported”
This is the harvest season when all the fruits of Street Artists labor are on display for everyone to admire – and just before the frost transforms all the leaves and turns the grass brown and your cheeks red, it is time for you to go outside with your camera. There is a new talented crop of artists on the street that has been maturing these last few seasons and of course there are the perennials on display as well. New York in the autumn is always dramatic; the perfect stage to unveil new productions, new art shows, new movies, new musical compositions, and new standards being set. If the pickings for this weeks BSA Images of the Week are an indication, Autumn is at full peak right now, pure splendor.
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Billi Kid, City Kitty, City Rabbit, Danielle Mastrion, Dee Dee, Elbow-Toe, Ernest Zacharevic, Hiss, Kai, Myth, Olek, Phoebe New York, Pixote, Sean9Lugo, Spider Tag, Tom Fruin, Tony De Pew, WK Interact, and You Go Girl!
Hillary Clinton was on Roosevelt Island yesterday formally announcing her candidacy under blue skies with an enthusiastic crowd speaking about income inequality and the poor and sounding more populist than ever. Let’s see if she can stretch the 2 Billion Dollars in donations she is reported to have raised all the way to next November. It all adds up quickly bro, and before you know it, you just blew a billion!
Wonder if she saw the Hot Tea pool while she was there on the island.
This weekend is the annual Welling Court community mural party in Queens. Don’t miss it. Run on almost no budget it features over a hundred muralists who always dig the friendly neighborhood vibe thanks to organizers Alison and Garrison Buxton.
And of course we are seeing a lot of new dope stuff on the streets…
Here’s our weekly interview with the street, this week featuring Brolga, Chris RWK, Dasic, Esteban Del Valle, James Bullough, Joe Iurato, Logan Hicks, Owen Dippie, Paper Skaters, QRST, Ramiro Davaro-Comas, Rubin415, SheWolf, Sonni, Tats Cru, Wing, and WK Interact.
Did you have a chance to hit some of the shows during New York’s Amory Week? Part blessing and curse, New York has this pre-Spring ritual of organized galleries tucked into little booths in far-flung neo-convention center architectural spaces that offer an onslaught of fascinating new ideas and artists who inspire you and give you a glimpse of the future. Alternately the works on display can sadden you with much derivative mediocrity scattered around and small chartreuse plumes of resentful dealers who clearly are not “people” people alternately ignoring or staring at you.
Before we headed to Berlin for a show we had time to made a mad dash through Scope and The Spring Break Art Show. Here are a few things that caught our eye.
The Spring/Break Art Show, now in its 4th year, is perhaps a current favorite because it creates space for exploring and considering. A 40 curator-driven art fair that featured 150+ artists on display in the re-purposed Moynihan Station (the enormous and grand old main post office), the panoply of concepts tweaked and piqued electrodes in the brain with plays on perception – one of the best outcomes you can hope for with contemporary art. Perhaps because the space is free for the curator, the ideas are similarly liberated.
And everyone is welcomed – collectors, artists, galleries, critics, scene junkies. TRANSACTION was the theme in the Skylight wing that looked like it hadn’t been used for about 20 years. There was a faint fear of Asbestos swirling around our heads while we appreciated the institutional decay of the interiors, laying a background for the fairs multiple installations. Somehow the possibilities for the curators to transform the space were endless, and one wasn’t completely sure when the decay of the interior was intentional or residual…but that was part of the fun.
What separates this fair from the rest of the pack is that the art here is not presented as an unattainable commodity, rather for the most part it is an installation/performance art show where you roam through custom fashioned rooms on both sides of long hallways of deadened fluorescent lights and ceiling leaks. Maybe its because we see a lot of urban art in detritus and abandoned buildings, but this was fun. And yes some of the art was amazing. Good to see artists are still experimenting and taking risks and can make site-specific installations that are alive and provocative.
Over at Scope the story was much different. In their press release and on their site they were heralding a “progressive format” in a new location. The latter was true. It was a new location. The former didn’t materialize and we were hard pressed to find what was progressive or new about it. There were still the temporary partitions and rented booths and while some of the spaces did run into each other it wasn’t with any particular goal for a collaborative spirit or some such idealist notion. If anything, Scope was chaotic with visitors and exhibitors remarking about not having enough time to set up when the doors open at 2:00 pm for the VIP and press, giving a frustrated aura of discord that may have influenced our perception.
Many galleries were still hanging works and adding price and information tags on the walls when we were there. But we know how it is when your dinner party guest arrives at 7 on the dot and you haven’t gotten dressed- you may want them to go out for a cocktail and then return.
Additionally, and unfortunately, Scope more than any of the other show seems to incorporate more derivative and secondary market works than their competitors. Street Art/Urban Art is increasingly hot so it appeared at many more galleries this year but without much curatorial consideration. The fair also including works we have already seen elsewhere, so it was hard to get too excited about that. But there were definitely some gems in there as well. Here are some shots of things we saw:
Not quite spring, the Art Fairs are arriving in New York ahead of the tulips. We strolled the impossibly long aisles and peered into the booths to find the folks who have at other times been called “Street Artists”. This weekend they’ll be fine artists, and the list is quite a bit longer than years past as the professionalization of the street continues.
Shows like the Armory, Scope, Volta, and Fountain are good testing venues to see the commercial viability for many of these artists and some have foregone representation – preferring to foot the bill on their own. Since walking the streets to see their work requires multiple layers and hats and gloves – traipsing through the fairs can be far preferable than dirty old Brooklyn streets. It’s also nice to see how some of these folks look in a tie or a blouse – or even just hit a comb. Here below we include some possible gems for you to hunt down.
We just took a tray of green jello shots out of the freezer and you can kiss anybody you want because today we’re all Irish, even Shakisha. Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you, unless you are one of the thousands of gay or lesbians dis-invited as usual from marching down 5th Avenue yesterday in the parade.
Here’s our weekly interview of the street, this week featuring Alice Pasquini, Amanda Marie, Foxx Face, Futura, HRH Queen Elizabeth, JR, Lädy Millard, Nick Walker, OCMC (Oh Captain My Captain), PM AM, Raemann, Shie Moreno, and WK Interact.
Now in 2013 Jonathan Levine Gallery plays host to a survey of the Street Artist that blew our minds when we traipsed through Soho in the 1980s and 90s, when Manhattan was still cool and had the authentic atmosphere of a vibrant arts “scene”. As we look at the new display that spans his career from street to gallery so far, the cultural explosions of that time and their dancing reflection as captured by WK in his large scale street installations of black and white, we realize it was an accurate depiction, and a prophetic one.
As a result, a brand new visitor will be just as taken by this collection as one twenty years ago. Given the increasingly militarized aspects of the modern day, what might have seemed like a paranoid future vision by WK now looks like contemporary society. What keeps all of it immediate and alive is how WK infuses the most static piece with the movement, the speed, the rush of the street.
Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening: Voice of Art – Migration is Beautiful with Favianna Rodriguez, Project Brave with WK Interact,We Will Know When We Are Home with Creepy, and Innerfields: DIY in Berlin.
BSA Special Feature:
Voice of Art – Migration is Beautiful
“Art has the power to shape our laws, change society, and to speak truth to power, “ says Favianna Rodriguez in this new documentary that quickly traces the relationship between immigration law and greed and what is effectively a new system of slavery. In an upbeat way. HOW does she do it?
WK Interact: Project Brave
“A way of giving back to the city,” is how Street Artist WK Interact talks about the inception and development of “Project Brave” – an incredible distillation of the chaos of the events in New York on September 11, 2001.
Kyle Hughes-Odgers: “We Will Know When We Are Home”
A visually rich video showing the Street Artist Creepy as he wanders Port Hedlund Australia through fields and weathered abandoned industrial carcasses in search of surfaces.
Innerfields: DIY in Berlin
Started as a graffiti crew, Innerfields continued to perfect their craft and apply it to commercial work very successfully. But they still love the street.