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E.L.K (Luke Cornish) – Louder Than Words (Charlie Foxtrot) – Interview

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Following a successful 2013, where he achieved the highest ever auction record for an Australian street artist, Luke Cornish will again use his desire to bring social awareness and change through his work. Charlie Foxtrot, in his latest exhibition to be held at Metro Gallery in Armadale Victoria opening on 12 June 2014, will be opened by controversial Catholic Priest, Father Bob Maguire.

Luke Cornish 'Here's Tom with the Weather'

The exhibition follows Cornish’s journey to the Middle East where he wanted to gain access to Syria to photograph the ongoing civil war and highlight its humanitarian impact.

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Kamea Hadar x Defer: Paradise Lost

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During POW! WOW! Hawaii 2014, artists Kamea Hadar and Defer (K2S) collaborated on a mural that marked the start of a year-long series of collaborative walls, gallery shows and other creative projects between the two artists entitled “Paradise Lost”. The second installment of the series are two large-scale murals in San Francisco and a viewing of canvas pieces at First Amendment Gallery, San Francisco. The show at First Amendment Gallery opens Thursday August 7th, 2014.

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ATM Takes Wing

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Street art and campaigning are age-old buddies; having gone hand in hand since their gestation and covering a range of topics, from political propaganda to raising awareness against media takeover. However one artist is bringing things a great deal closer to home alongside a slightly offbeat subject. For the past year London-based ATM has been re-inhabiting rundown areas of the capital with the ghosts of times gone by in the form of its forgotten bird species. Having recently featured in some of the big dogs of mainstream media, we put Jodie on the case to see what all the flapping was about. Excuse the pun.

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UPDATED – Alexis Diaz, Master of the Mixture

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Mere hours after hopping off a London-bound flight from Montreal, Puerto Rican animal-splicing artist Alexis Diaz got talking to VNA’s Jodie about how things are looking for his rapidly expanding career. Having made a splash in London’s Shoreditch area last year with his iconic Octophant, Alexis let us in on his upcoming plans for his current return visit and gave us an update on how things are shaping up in the street art scene of his home country.

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“Inner Myths” by Shida – Opening Friday 4 July

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“Inner Myths”, a collection of new paintings and sculptural works by Shida is a dynamic record of Shida’s development as an artist who envisions infinite worlds. Influenced by the work of Frank Frazetta, Paul Gauguin, Mikhail Vrubel and Nikolai Kalmakov, for “Inner Myths”, as Australia’s most prolific young street artist, Shida reinvokes two centuries of art history in his characteristic style. Shida is considered an asset to Australian contemporary art, who is constantly challenging himself against the sources of his inspiration.

Shida took some time out to talk about his upcoming show….

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Rockin’ Out with 23rd Key

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Melbourne based artist 23rd Key has just submitted two mind-blowing stencils into Australia’s ‘Archibald Prize‘.  She took time to chat with Damo about how this all came about.

DW:  Thanks for taking the time to chat.  Can you tell us a bit about yourself, what led you to becoming a stencil artist?

23rd Key: No worries. I actually kind of fell into it- I made my first stencil when I was in high school. Being from Melbourne, stencil art was still emerging at the time, my brother knew some of the basics and taught them to me. I happened to really take to the medium though, I found the process of cutting/making stencils really cathartic and have been doing it ever since- I enjoy doing it now more than I ever have. I got to a stage where I’d made so many artworks that I decided I needed to do something with them – being an artist was never something I thought I’d be, ‘when I grew up’.

DW:  Often there can be a story behind a name.  Is that the case with you?

23rd Key: I struggle a lot when it comes to names, even when I used to play roller derby, I found coming up with a name harder than learning how to skate. The first show I was ever in I went under the pseudonym ‘Keys’, it was basically just because it sounds like my real last name and was my nickname for a long time. Twenty-three has been my favourite number since I can remember and is actually the date of my birth, so I kind of just put the two together. It’s a pretty poor story I guess, hopefully the work I make makes up for it.

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Fred Fowler – ‘New Landscapes’

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Melbourne based Fred Fowler completed his Master of Contemporary Art in 2012, a decade after establishing himself as one of Melbourne’s pioneer street artists. Complimenting his origins in graffiti, Fowler applies a sophisticated, abstract style and a process driven approach. Visual poetics and subtle symbolism are expertly blended across his paintings, etchings, sculptures and installations. ‘In Decorating The Apocalypse’, Fowler’s debut exhibition at Backwoods Gallery, commercial iconography clashed with graffiti tribalism. For his upcoming show, ‘New Landscapes’ opening on June 20, Fred has expressed the effects of modernity and colonization across the Australian landscape.  Fred kindly took some time to talk with VNAussie Damo about ‘New Landscapes’.

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James Reka – Untold

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James Reka is a young contemporary Australian artist based in Berlin, Germany. His origins lie in the alleyways and train lines of Melbourne’s inner-suburbs where he spent over a decade refining his now-emblematic aesthetic. His character work has come to represent the beginnings of a new style of street art: clean, unique and not necessarily on the street (much to his mother’s joy).  With an amazing show opening tomorrow night (6 June) at Backwoods Gallery, Reka took time to talk to Damo.

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Buff Monster’s Friday Fives

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We got a little love from our favourite melty Metallica fan, Buff Monster on his round up over at restaurant review site, The Infatuation.

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Snik, Now and Next

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Britain’s beloved stencil duo Snik struck Brick Lane last month with a triptych of stencils from Marc Laroche’s haunting photo-series, “hair”. The copper clad portraits can be caught on Hanbury Street in the beating heart of the London Shoreditch area.

So VNA’s Jodie got chatting with Nik, one half of the prolific double act, during a rare quiet moment nestled in a packed schedule of exhibitions, printmaking and painting, to try to find out a bit about what the past, present and future holds for the hardworking pair.

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