Friday, February 27, 2009

Friday ProFiles: Stormie

Nestled in between the Indian Ocean and the Darling Range, the city of Perth is a cultural enclave in western Australia. Located nearly 4,000 kilometers from the country’s east coast, the city is closer geographically to East Timor and Indonesia than Melbourne or Sydney. However, this isolated urban area serves as a nurturing environment for creative endeavors.  Beginning with small personal pieces, Perth native Stormie’s notoriety spread from block to block. Today, his work on the streets and in galleries attracts fans worldwide.

Harsh criticism at a young age could’ve preemptively squashed Stormie’s career. “As a child, my mum sent one of my drawings to an aunt who taught art at a UK university,” he recalls. “Upon critiquing the drawing, she told my mum I was damaged.” Fortunately, Stormie was a resilient youngster who ignored his relative’s grim diagnosis. Painting on paper and canvas boards, he found his way to the streets in 1984 and fell in love with graffiti. When he started bombing, Stormie insists, “There was no real concept or understanding of what I was doing. I was that weird kid doing something nobody really understood! Fears only came later on: fear of what I did not being any good, of being judged according to other people’s criteria.” Using a childhood nickname alluding to his hot temper, Stormie channeled his passionate personality into art. 

Out on the streets, writers were quick to judge this fresh-faced newcomer. After throwing up his first piece (drips and all), a fellow writer called him a toy, arguing that he’d read Subway Art and the piece “wasn’t how it was supposed to be done.” Though he didn’t let the comment discourage him, Stormie says, “I went through a huge learning curve to get a handle on spray paint and mixed media. I learned to paint graffiti and large scale stuff. Then, while filtering ideas through my adult eyes, I applied these techniques to my childhood style.” Driven by his desire to improve and communicate with others, Stormie constantly pushes his style in new directions.

Although many artists influence him, Stormie’s original inspiration stems from record covers. “One of my cousins was heavily into punk,” he explains, “and that ideology of self-made punk manufacturing prompted me to go out and reclaim spaces through painting. “Bombing connected him with other likeminded artists who invited him to join their crews. As a proud member of ADS and AWR, he believes “Collaborations expand people’s work by pushing them out of their comfort zones. Plus, it’s great to have people that are always up for painting.” While Stormie’s style has evolved since his early graff days, he insists that old-school techniques are still relevant. “Tags are extremely powerful statements that shouldn’t be underrated,” he insists. “A tag tells you a lot about people, how they manage their environment, and the stresses of bombing. You can’t fake getting up like that.”

Today, Stormie’s work explores what it means to be human. He says, “It’s about people being isolated and alone. It’s the dirt under the fingernails and the beauty within decay. I believe all of these things are paintings of true grit, of inner strengths that come from having to face adversity. I’m creating depictions of the superhero inside.”

Stormie’s pieces run the gamet in terms of subject matter and style. In one photo, Hokusai-inspired waves toss playful koi fish to and fro. In another, blood-red spray paint sketches a grimacing face labeled ‘Everyone’s screaming.” His current characters share many common traits: a sullen face, stooped shoulders, a general gloom about them. Whether they’re wearing fish jackets, boxing gloves, or nothing at all, these solitary figures express the isolation Stormie describes.

Unlike his characters, Stormie leads a busy social life. From bombing with Rough and System in the UK to collaborating with YelloWoozy at Greece’s Chromopolis tour, street art has transported Stormie to all corners of the globe. “I’ve been very lucky,” he explains, “and I’ve worked really hard to be where I am right now. I travel a lot and I work all over the world. Like Albert Facey, I have a ‘fortunate life.’ My life is my greatest adventure.” 

Fabulous, Stormie! Thanks so much. For more on Stormie, check out his website here.

I am so excited for next week that it's hard not to post on Saturday and Sunday, too. We've got stuff coming in from Italy, Mexico, France, Russia, Japan, and even the Philippines. (Shout out to all my readers in Cebu, Tacloban, and everyone else across that lovely country!). Get ready for an international array of artists, photos, and stories. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

February 2009: Boost in the Wild American West

I love blogging about street art because while the subject matter stays the same, every artist's style is a bit different. There's the classic spraypaint and Sharpie approach, wheatpaste, stickers, and everything in between. This post stands out, though, because Boost taught me to look at an ordinary household object in a completely new context. Currently based in Sioux Falls, SD, his medium of choice is constantly evolving to include a wide range of styles. Check out what Boost has to say.









"Ever since I can remember, I have been drawing, painting or working with different mediums to create something. From a young age, I drew pictures on my school work; my homework papers were covered in doodles and I always excelled in art class. In the last two years, I finally started to sell my artwork at art shows and online through different forums and Myspace. The first medium I really became interested in was acrylics on canvas and wood. I sold a few pieces here and there to friends and others at art shows when I lived in Denver, CO. I always priced my pieces very low so that others could have a cool piece of artwork at very little cost. I feel that art shouldn't be so overpriced that you can't appreciate it!"





"That is what got me into street art; a perfect way to get my artwork out there without paying to put my art in a gallery or splitting my earnings with a gallery owner. The streets became a means to distribute my art semi-permanently to the public!"













"I got involved with a few guys out of Denver called the Magnet Mafia. We produce collectible works of art on magnets and toss them up around town for people to look at or take home and put on their fridge! Magnets are a non-destructive way of getting our work up, plus a cool way to get work up high and in some awesome spots! I was also able to take these magnets with me on travel as well as trade with people around the U.S. and countries such as Austria and England."



"After tossing up a few hundred magnets in Denver, I started to toy with other mediums like stickers and some wheatpastes. I am now in the process of doing some installations with my new character around town and in other cities in the near future. My artwork will soon be found in a few books and an upcoming art fan-zine called Urban Liberation Front! All news and updates will be posted on my Myspace page!"










Amazing! I've seen a lot of street art, but I've yet to see someone use a magnet. Such a simple yet brilliant idea! I'd love to find one for my fridge. Anyone else think this is cool? Leave Boost some comments and tell him what you think! For more Boost, visit him at Myspace (keywords Boost M.M.). Tomorrow, we're traveling to the world's smallest continent for a super Aussie post. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

February 2009: BUY IT Goes Global

Today's post may be based in Florida, but BUY IT is going galaxy-wide with his trademark campaign. Hitting up everywhere from Ansonia, Connecticut, to Ibaraki, Japan, he's covered a lot of ground with his ravenous sticker critters. He writes:
"BUY IT started in '06. When I started, I was very influenced by the OBEY campaign. I loved the idea of spreading a supposedly meaningless image all over the place that would cause people to wonder and ask questions. I was also intrigued by the notion that an individual, not a corporation, would go to major cities worldwide and spread the image himself.""All the variations of BUY IT represent the ways that over-consumption disguises itself with an appealing veneer so you don't question what are you buying. All the BUY IT slogans are the real message behind the cute and funny messages that are broadcasted and shown to us daily.""I would describe my sytle as underground pop. I try to make it look weird and dirty but at the same time appealing to the underground and mainstream masses."
Fabulous! Here's hoping those stickers make it to central Connecticut in the near future! Keep us posted, BUY IT... I love getting life updates. For more on BUY IT, hit him up on Myspace (keywords BUY IT Galaxywide Co.)

Speaking of updates, Michael De Feo sent me a note yesterday about a benefit for New York's Children's Museum of the Arts. On Tuesday, March 3, head over to 92Y Tribeca at 7:30 pm for an evening of cocktails, music, and art. Featuring a live art auction at 8:30, the items up for grabs include a chance for six kids to paint a public mural with Michael in Lower Manhattan. If there's a tiny Matisse in your life who would love to get messy with a street art legend, plug this date into your Blackberry (or jot it in your Moleskine, if you're old-school like myself).

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

February 2009: Gotcha in Fort Worth, TX

I've never spent an extensive period of time in Texas, but the Lone Star Staters I've met have been nothing but charming. My friend Nick is a fabulous screenplay writer who made traveling around Ireland a blast. On a road trip across the country, a pedestrian tipped his hat to me and commented on my 'fancy britches' (I was wearing purple spandex pants at the time). Today's post comes from Gotcha from Fort Worth. His passion for street art and neat style make me want to explore Texas and find the quirky bits that make it fun. Gotcha writes:

"I just got into stickers because my friend Shasta introduced me to the medium. I love the fact you can draw 'em at home and slap them up on the go with little fear of reprecussions, unlike when you get caught spraying. I like putting stickers in unlikely, almost unnoticible places, so when they do 'hopefully' get noticed, whoever sees them is just like, 'Damn, someone put something colorful 3/4 the way up that light pole. Badass!' If I could even get that reaction, that's enough. If not, I still get to see them sometimes and it brightens my day up.""Although I haven't really done any work that has specific political, social, or emotional meanings, I like to use public settings as a place to express myself. I put the alien bacteria sticker on the anouncement board right outside the cafeteria area of our union. You know if an alien came here, they'd be like, 'FUCK your leader! I heard about McDonalds all the way from Zelfar 5!'"
"Anyway, I'm working on a lot more stuff. I'm trying to get into some more humorous stuff 'cause I love seeing street art that makes me laugh; it's the best! If I can do that to someone, then my life is good." 
'A new form of artistic reality can change the perspective on creative expression.' -StYle

Thanks, man! Your comments on the blog were too kind. I'm so glad you're getting something out of it. Like your stickers, if I can connect with one person and teach him or her something new each day, then I'm doing my job. Cheers!

Monday, February 23, 2009

In The Headlines

After a relaxing break from work and responsibility, I am...okay, still not ready to go back to the daily grind. However, I did take some time to reach out to more artists and got some tremendous feedback. I'm excited about this week's posts as well as the profile on tap for Friday. While the wire's been quiet lately, we've got a bumper crop of headlines to get you through the day.

Torontoist interviews Anser, the brainpower behind some familiar faces on the city's streets.

Apparently Selfridges has jumped on the street art bandwagon?

Remed and Zbiok team up for "It Hurts," an exhibition at New York's Brooklynite Gallery.

Apparently, the first street art workshop in the Cayman Islands was fairly successful.

The LA Times speaks to KAWS about his transition from graffiti to gallery.

In New Orleans, Louisiana ArtWorks is sponsoring a two-part panel discussion about street art featuring Michael De Feo, Michael Dingler, Dan Witz, and Gabriel Flores. 

This past Saturday, Viagrafik and Cut Collective painted live on the streets of Wellington, New Zealand.

Kiwi artist Peap caught the eye of New Zealand media outlets. Keep an eye out for a post on him soon!

On Thursday, catch a screening of BOMBIT! at Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum.

And, in what is increasingly becoming the 'Legal Battles' section of these headlines, Shepard Fairey continues to tussle with the AP.

Art critic Peter Schjeldahl busts Shep's chops in The New Yorker.

Tufts Daily columnist Lumay Wang defends street art in her Medford neighborhood.


Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday ProFiles: The Figurehead Experiment

In these uncertain times, Willimantic's art scene takes a back seat to the city's drug and economic issues. However, the residents of Windham Artspace and other members of the creative community should not be ignored. In particular, what's happening on the streets is definitely worth a look.

The Figurehead Experiment is one such artist. Tagging mostly in New England, the Figurehead's trademark icon spread like an epidemic to every continent. "We have the sticker templates available so others can help with the experiment," he explains. Harnessing the power of the public, the Figurehead's image can be modified, twisted, and morphed to create new identities. He confesses, "I'm not sure if the Figurehead Experiment actually qualifies as art. I'm just trying to see how far we can take an icon that doesn't represent anything. A lot of real artists from around the world infuse their own style into the Figurehead image. That's where it becomes art, I guess."
For the past year, the Figurehead Experiment has covered Willimantic and other locations with his trademark visage. Inspired by the Church of Subgenius, the Figurehead's casual interest in street art quickly became an obsession. "It's very rare that we go out specifically to tag," he says. "Wherever we go, we just always have stickers with us. That's why you find them randomly on gas pumps, at the laundromat, car wash, and convenience stores, in small towns, or on city street signs." The Figurehead even appears on the Airline Trail, a converted rail trail stretching 50 miles from East Hampton to Willimantic.  The best part about tagging, the Figurehead explains, is connecting with others. "I don't know the artists that influence me," he says, "But they share the same street signs with us. One of the greatest things about tagging is the odd form of communication we have with total strangers who are tagging the same spot. That inspires us."While the Figurehead denies having any initial fears, he's experienced some dangerous adventures while tagging. "I almost got hit by a car in Willimantic," he recalls. "It came so close that I was able to tag the trunk as it passed. Normally, I would never tag someone's personal property, but this situation warranted otherwise." Understandable. Hopefully, that sticker serves as a reminder to share the road with pedestrians.Wherever you go, the Figurehead is always watching. Sprayed onto a bridge, a giant icon monitors the river's water levels. On the front of an ATM, the icon and his posse of familiar street art faces safeguard the broken machine from scam artists. From high above the Massachusetts forest, the icon keeps tabs on hikers with the help of some giant binoculars. In a loading alley, the icon enforces the manager's request to 'not overload.' Out in the grocery store parking lot, the icon encourages shoppers to...buckle their children into the cart? Put their carts away? Regardless of the location, the icon's gaze follows pedestrians everywhere and keeps a constant eye on local activity.
The elusive identity of the Figurehead Experiment adds to the thrill of the hunt. Out on Main Street in Willimantic, I spent Wednesday afternoon photographing what's happening. As I looked around, I wondered if the Figurehead was watching. Was he the guy waiting for a bus on the corner? The friendly man checking his voicemail in the barbershop? The construction worker directing traffic around a site? The icon is a constant reminder of the Figurehead's presence, but I doubt I'll find out who he truly is. To the Figurehead and other Willi artists, I salute you and definitely support your projects. 

All images courtesy of the Figurehead Experiment. To view more photos, catch up with the crew on Myspace (keywords The Figurehead Experiment).

That's all for now, folks. We have an amazing lineup coming at you next week with posts from all over the place. Rep your city and country by sending your words and images to illicitexhibitions.blogspot.com. Come on, Iran! India! Brazil! China! I know you guys are out there. Show some love for your fellow street artists and share their work with others. Have a great weekend and I'll catch you on Monday.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

August 2000: Sarajevo

Hugo Kaagman is awesome. Period. You'll be seeing a lot more of him in the weekly posts. Today, his work takes us to post-war Sarajevo, circa 2000.
Being a street artist is full of occupational hazards. Thugs, cops, and rats loom around every corner. Most of these problems can be anticipated, but sometimes unusual quandaries emerge. When Dutch artist Hugo Kaagman spent August 2000 painting in Sarajevo, he dealt with a rare set of issues. Financed by a grant from the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts, Kaagman was commissioned by the Bosnian government to help rebuild the post-war city. To spruce up buildings on the former front lines, Kaagman painted five large murals in the suburb of Hrasno. However, the bullet holes in the old flats made the painting surface pockmarked and difficult. The extreme summer heat threatened to explode his aerosol spray cans. In addition to the heat, the only scaffolding available was an unstable 14-foot trolley on wheels. In spite of these setbacks, Kaagman's chief concern was "How would the traumatized population respond to this 'unnecessary' luxury?"Kaagman quickly solved his logistical problems. With the help of heavy chains, he secured the scaffolding in place. Painting from the early morning until 3 pm reduced the risk of a spray can explosion. Steering clear of cliché images of peace doves and broken guns, Kaagman drew inspiration from M.C. Escher in addition to Chinese and Moroccan patterns. Armed with tape, rules, and templates, he diligently set about transforming the flats' exteriors.These faux-tile murals are pleasant to look at, but they also possess deeper underlying meanings. In "Swan," two swans interlock like one of Escher's puzzling graphics. Kaagman explains that the two birds represent the cultural and historic parallels between Ireland and Bosnia. The bold Moroccan tilework of "Carpet" illustrates Kaagman's love of patterns and, he adds, is "a friendly nod to Islam." His most controversial piece, "Peace Talks," features two diplomats negotiating amidst a frenzy of spear-toting monkeys. The piece raised some eyebrows; during the painting process, countless pedestrians stopped to question Kaagman.In the end, though, the community's response was positive. The curious pedestrians gave him encouraging feedback and appreciated his work. Speaking fondly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kaagman says, "I love the extremity of Sarajevo and its suburbs. You have the old style of the city where the mosque, the synagogue, and the Coptic church all sit side by side. But there is also the modern style with hip, MTV-minded youth. There is so much contrast here. Someone who looks happy now may have spent time in a concentration camp." Like the city's incongruities, Kaagman's murals contrasted sharply with Hrasno's bullet-bludgeoned buildings. While art certainly can't resolve deep-seated conflicts, Kaagman and his work make the landscapes a little brighter.
All images courtesy of Hugo Kaagman. To see more images of this and other projects, visit www.kaagman.nl.

Can anyone in Sarajevo give us an update on those murals? How are they holding up? What's the scene like? Let us know what's up! We've got great posts coming up, including tomorrow's ProFile which features a local CT project. Fabulous!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

February 2009: Providence

This past weekend, I popped over to Providence, Rhode Island, for a slice of Antonio's and a good hunt. (Yes, I am an Antonio's girl, but someday I would like to try Nice Slice just for comparison). Although it's quite small, Providence is one of my favorite cities. The neighborhoods are fairly walkable, there's great food everywhere you turn, and it's got a quirky style all its own. My only gripe is that the bus system is a tad pokey (I'm not trying to drive in a city). Yet if Providence offered me a decent job, I would probably take it in a heartbeat. (No offense, New York, but your hiring freeze is killing me softly).

I worked in Providence two summers ago and will share those photos at a later date. What interested me this time was the overwhelming presence of USPS mailing tags. Like Royal Air Mail stickers, USPS stickers are perfect pocket canvases. They feature plenty of white space and are free at any post office nation-wide. Today's post showcases the USPS sticker and the myriad of artistic possibilities it contains.
This ant is posted up on a parking sign outside of the Wickenden Street Utrecht outlet. The utility box next to it is covered in Shepard Fairey and other stickers.
Although it's a bit beat up, I liked the detailed work on this sticker. I found her on the back of a stop sign across from Rainbow Bicycles on Brook Street.
Simple but elegant. I forget where this one was located. Unfortunately, the sun was going down so some of these are a bit blurry.
I love this guy's face. Whoever makes these posted a bunch of other stickers and I think the the characters are fabulous.
I think this one is my favorite. Such an elaborate stencil style on such a small sticker. I found this one a crosswalk light on Charlesfield Street. There's so much going on in Providence right now and it's definitely worth a look. Thanks to Adam for bringing an extra camera (damn you, batteries) and jumping on top of walls to get a shot. You're the best! I think I'm going on a hunt this afternoon in uncharted territory (for me, anyway). We'll see what I dig up!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

August 2008: Québec City

Fabulous weekend. Thank goodness for high school vacations; I needed a break from my students as much as they wanted to get away from me. Yesterday, I popped up to Boston and checked out the Shepard Fairey exhibit at the ICA. Very nicely done! There's a wide selection of prints from Andre the Giant and the Obey campaign to his war series and a variety of portraits, including the ubiquitous Obama piece. Definitely worth checking out.

Now on to the post. Today's words and images come from my sister. She managed to find time in her chaotic college schedule to wax poetic about shots she took last summer. She writes:
"Over the summer I visited Québec for the first time. Gorgeous city. It blends the old and the modern so well, and its street art is no exception. It was the first time I'd been in a city where I really looked hard for good street art, but before long this piece jumped out at me. At the crossroads of a small neighborhood and a row of cute little shops, I found this guy. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to figure out who he is, or what "moé" means, but I find myself looking back at this picture every once in a while, trying to figure out the mystery."
Er, these are great! Thanks so much. (And mystery solved: 'moé' means 'moi' in French so it roughly translates to 'Someone stop me!') I'm already mulling over tomorrow's post but we've got a lot of interesting stuff waiting to be shared. If you've got any photos or stories that you want posted, send them my way! My readers in the Philippines! Turkey! France! Germany! Russia! Yeah, I know you're all out there. Rep your countries and let people know what's up on your street art scene! Drop me a line at illicitexhibitions@gmail.com and let me know what's up!

Monday, February 16, 2009

In The Headlines

What a great weekend. I scoured Providence for street art (which I will share later on in the week), consumed a ridiculous quantity of Mexican food, saw The Wrestler (so good but so intense!) and caught up with old friends. Nothing like a good weekend to revive your drive. There are some great posts waiting in the wings this week. First off, let's cover the headlines.

Street artists in Yakima, Washington, are finding new ways to incorporate graffiti techniques into indoor projects.

Shepard Fairey gets the jump on the AP but will his argument stand up in court if he's threatening another artist with copyright infringement?

Boston remains divided about Shep and his Allston pasting spree.

Photographer Steve Rotman documents the history of graffiti in the San Fransisco Bay area.

Australia's The Age speaks to Jon Reiss about his recent documentary, Bomb It! (I've seen it and it's quite good; definitely worth a look.)

And finally, the Indy Star declares that street art has sold out?

Tomorrow's post comes from one of my favorite people ever...my sister.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday ProFiles: The Mire Project

Today’s society places extreme emphasis on early success. Child prodigies and savants attract media attention but fade into the background as the pack catches up. Kinder soccer and junior gymnastics classes train tots before they’ve mastered walking. Get rich by 20! Earn a Ph.D by 24! Retire by 30! Barreling towards the future at warp speed, today’s super babies jump out of the womb and battle their way the top.

But there’s something to be said for late bloomers. In today’s breakneck world, taking your time is a forgotten skill. Olivier of the Mire project doesn’t have many memories of childhood artistic inklings. Growing up in a household that appreciated art, he was exposed at an early age but took a while to create his own. He recalls, “My creative side came a bit late. I remember the first poster I painted. I was very pleased with the result. I made it a habit to work with lots of bright colors and to play with these colors in an exciting way.”

Little tile aliens inspired Olivier to try his hand at street art. “The approach of Space Invaders motivated me to try urban art,” he recalls. “I, too, started doing mosaic collages representing rods, but I soon realized that the tile didn’t suit my approach; it was too awkward. I love S.I.’s work as a systematic and massive flooding.”  Fascinated by the stand-by patterns on television, Oliver created The Mire Project.

The project is based on the pervasive presence of media in daily life. “My work deals with the television,” Olivier explains, “and the phenomenon of dependence on screens. We are increasingly surrounded by screens: at home, at work, in public spaces. We’ve developed an insatiable need for screens. The stand-by pattern was broadcast in the late hours of the night (in France anyway) when programs over. We often come to the end of the programs, perhaps with the unconscious desire to want more.”

“Today, our wishes are fulfilled (for better or for worse). Television continuously broadcasts programs on hundreds of channels. I belong to a generation that saw the world of images emerge and explode. Today, we are bombarded with images for our distraction, our information, but also to maintain tranquility.” Combining posters, stickers, and Technicolor televisions, the stand-by pattern never looked so good.

This novel take on a classic symbol led Olivier to view his city’s streets in new ways. He recalls, “I was particularly productive during a period of unemployment following redundancy and before finding a new job. I remember climbing up an old refrigerator in the street to paste a poster. It was at night, the city was asleep, and as I watched the street from the top of the refrigerator, I realized that the street did not have the same appearance at this height. Being off the ground was an experience I remember vividly.” 
Like any fledgling artist, Olivier was nervous in the beginning. “Starting out as an artist, particularly without artistic training, requires a certain courage,” he insists. “You have to prove that you’re legitimate. Street art has an advantage because everyone is invited to express himself or herself.” Due to his medium, Olivier has yet to run into trouble. “I’ve had several encounters with the police while I’m out pasting, but I’ve never had problems. The police were very understanding. Wheatpasting isn’t perceived as degradation. In Paris, posters are fairly common. I don’t believe that police are as understanding of graffiti as they are of murals.” Today, Olivier lives in Paris’s 17th arrondissement and has been bombing its streets for the as three years. He explains, “I work mainly in Paris because I live here and I love this city. It has beautiful walls and street art is very present.” Because of his day job (Olivier remains mum about his alter ego), he posts sporadically when he has a spare minute. While he may not always have the time, the motivation is always there. He adds, “What drives me is the street, the ephemeral nature of the works, the creative overflow and anti-conformist art of the urban, the absence of rules. I also think that this art has an urban warrior side and a poetic side; I like both sides.”
Speaking fondly of the freedom and passion behind street art, Olivier hopes that the field will continue to morph and grow in the future. “I hope it will keep its anarchic side spontaneous and overflowing,” he wishes. “The police have always tried to counter urban art, but it always managed to adapt: going up on rooftops, using stencils, and putting graffiti on display. I hope street artists will continue to find loopholes and that street art will be where we didn’t think to look.” 

All images courtesy of The Mire Project. Check out more shots at http://www.flickr.com/photos/33624157@N06/.

Thanks so much, Olivier! I do hope I translated well. Sorry about all the confusing questions; I do my best with French. Hope warm weather and good times come your way this weekend and I'll catch you all next Monday! Have a good one.


Thursday, February 12, 2009

January 2009: 100artworks and Sickboy

Bristol's Sickboy is known for using any material as a painting surface: paper, brick, canvas. However, his latest medium of choice is a bit more high-end. This time around, he's tracing his temples on 24 carat gold sheets. A far cry from abandoned factory buildings. Tom over at 100artworks.com gave us a bit more information:

"From early 2000 no street corner or rubbish bin in Bristol was safe. What appeared on them was strange and unique and the graffiti phenomenon known as Sickboy was born. Obsessed with yellow and red dome like temples, Sickboy left his mark in every nook and cranny."

"Interested with the natural restoration of the Bristol, Sickboy sees his work as approachable to a wide audience. Each temple is unique but all act as a very identifiable logo."
The red and yellow used within the temples reflect the purposeful colour theory behind many corporate logos such as McDonald's. The bright colours are instantly eye catching against the gritty backdrop of urban life."

There are 250 non-gold and 75 gold-leaf prints in the edition. Each 30 x 30 cm piece comes signed and numbered by the artist.

I'm just curious as to where the urban life part comes in. Maybe "started out hustlin', ended up ballin"?





Next week, I'm looking forward to getting back outside. I do like the galleries, but I always love what's going on in the streets. Tomorrow's Friday ProFile features a French artist fascinated with TV static. Any guesses?