October 16, 2009
I went to San Francisco last week. It was pretty much awesome except the weather sucks. I mean it. Mark Twain was right on when he said “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco”.
but there was some pretty sick graf (mostly MSK AWR), street art and murals kicking around the city. I spent most of my time riding a tiny bike around the city and ended making several desperate attempts to chase after graf trucks as they passed me by. fortunately a few were parked when I found them, so today ill post up some nice graf trucks, cause, you know, “trucks is the new trains” thats what the kids say right? Anyway…here are the trucks and soon ill post up some of the sick murals and street art i came across.
August 21, 2009
Photo by Becki Fuller
Instead of posting some photographs of the newest in new street art, I want to talk about Shepard Fairey. By now I am sure you all know that Shepard Fairey is the guy behind the oh so popular Obama “Hope” posters of last years campaign. And many of you probably also know that he is the guy behind the Obey stickers and wheat pastes plastered across the country.
Opinions on Fairey span the spectrum. On the one hand, a unique version of his Obama poster was acquired by the National Portrait Gallery last spring and remains the most popular piece on display there. Alternatively many people have been concerned that Shepard’s work is little more then plagiarism. (see lawsuit filed by the associated press). Now I am not writing to argue one way or the other, I just want to tell it the way I see it.
During the Spring a retrospective of Shepard’s work opened at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston. Initially I was not too interested in taking the Fung Wah bus 5 hours to Boston to see works which I have already seen plastered from Portland to Poughkeepsie. I had no intention of going until my Aunt in Boston invited my parents and I to visit and see the show. At first I was surprised. These are three people who, though well versed in the Wyeths and O’Keefes of the world, dont really know a thing about street art. But I realized that they were also three people attempting to relate to me. I didn’t have the heart to tell them that Obey bores me. If nothing else it was an excuse to see my parents and have some of my aunt’s sick Korean cooking. Besides, I found out the Bolt Bus has wifi! So I relented and made a brief sojourn in Boston a couple weeks ago.
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August 2, 2009
Perhaps you have noticed the stickers plastered across the 5 boroughs over the last two weeks. The ones that say “Read this Fighting” “Pay Raising Books” or simply “Read” These are the work of the Graf writer who goes by the name Reader, or Booker, or Preacher, and there are a couple more aliases which elude me at the moment. He has been hitting New York pretty hard recently, so I thought I would devote this entry to the Reader himself. I am not really sure where the bookmaster is from, and I’m sure few people do, but he seems to be something of a transient. Recently he appears to have had a residency in New Orleans which seems to have been pretty successful. The stickers about town are just the tip of the Reader repertoire. He is probably most well known for his large pieces made primarily with rollers, many of which can bee seen from the BQE. He has established something of a gallery in an empty lot along the Gowanus Canal, but he has pieces running all through the borough of Kings and it seems that more appear daily. A lot of the pieces incite the viewer to read, or involve books, but there are also many which are not easily comprehensible in their meaning or reference. Others are more obvious, such has his piece on the side of the “Batcave” near the Gowanus which reads, “Open your eyes, No more corporate bullshit, fuk wallstreet”
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July 10, 2009
The Brazilian twins known as Os Gemeos (the twins, in portugese) are in town for the month of July working on a new mural on the corner of Houston and Bowery. It is unclear how long they will be working on the mural but if you are in the neighborhood over the weekend its well worth your while to make some time to just watch some masters at work as they create this new mural. Os Gemeo have become two of the most prominent street artists in the world with their playful and surreal characters and graf chops. Respected by graf writer and street artists alike they are an unusual element. I ran into the vaunted Photographer/Anthropologist Martha Cooper (see: Subway Art, Hip Hop Files) today when I arrived at the mural and she made my day by introducing me to them. I was able to have them both sign my copy of Going Postal which features them and somehow has some of my work in it as well.
I could have stayed and watched for hours but the shadows were growing longer. And I had a Literary Upstart championship to see.
in any case check it out, its not often you get to observe something like this in process.
Plus if you want to check out a little history of the wall From Keith Haring to DYM and Miss 17 check here
and Martha Coopers blog here
Also this weekend some nice ish is going down in Brooklyn feature work by Gaia, Logan Hicks, Chris Stain, Ellis G and Others
plus Factory Fresh is opening a new show with even more Brazilians
July 2, 2009
Imminent Disaster unleashed this piece onto redhook a couple months ago but its still one of my favorite jammies up in the streets of the planet Brooklyn. This particular work is composed of black paper cut out over a white background. The cuts really kill me and it boggles my mind how she transports this around to paste up. You can also see another version of this peice at Ad Hoc Gallery where Disaster is having a show with Gaia through July 26th. Check it. http://www.adhocart.org/