Rosario Martínez Llaguno and Roberto Vega Jiménez make up the Mexican activist art duo, Lapiztola. Recently visiting London, they worked on an exhibition called ‘Democracia real ya!’, meaning ‘real democracy now!’ The exhibition was hosted by Global Justice Now (formerly the World Development Movement) and was held at Rich Mix in Shoreditch. We caught up with the guys at Lapiztola to talk about the project.
Check out the below sneak peak of Unwell Bunny’s upcoming Paris exhibition and documentary…
What happens when you bring over 100 graffiti artists together to paint one wall in one city? No, it’s not what you’re thinking. Dubai saw no punch ons or turf wars last November for the city’s ambitious attempt to break the record of the World’s Longest Graffiti Scroll.
Alongside over 100 different artists from 26 countries, the Ironlak Family made international art history by trekking their team to Dubai to take part in the painting of the record breaking scroll, measuring over 2.2km long. Created in celebration of the United Arab Emirates’ 43rd year as a country, the canvas scroll stretched across Jumeriah Beach to mark the shape of the country. The team’s efforts became a globally recognized street art and graffiti event titled ‘Rehlhatna’.
VNA catches up with Ironlak’s own TUES to chat about the crossing of graffiti artists from around the globe for a collective project.
This series of monotypes titled Urban Analogue by MEAR ONE was created over a seven-year period between 2003-2009 with the late great Southern California master printer, Pat Merrill.
Each work from this series is unique, they are based on the artist’s subconscious exploration of his everyday structural and psychological environment growing up on the streets of LA. The spontaneous and liberating process of experimentation and execution inherent in this art form allows ad-libs of thought and subversive irony to flourish and which feature prominently in these works. Though more like his live art than his graffiti and tags, MEAR ONE draws from both practices to bring to this series a certain energy, speed, and fluidity from the streets that translate into remarkable movement, texture, and abstraction onto the surface.
MEAR explains “As an artist one of the many interesting aspects of this personal journey is the ability to explore different mediums, and a great teacher recognizes these abilities and helps you do exactly that.”
“Pat Merrill understood my natural affinity for the graphic arts and language that resonated seamlessly with monotyping. In printmaking you have to think outside of the normal realm of color, shape, shadow, and light gradients because everything becomes limited and decisive. Pat confronted me with several technical challenges, stripping me down of my traditional process, providing a new palette and tools, which in this case gave birth to the discovery of mark-making by scraping and removing as opposed to adding and applying. Through this reductive process I recognized in this medium something special and unique unto itself that even my studio paintings could not achieve.”
“It was only when I accepted it couldn’t be like my paintings that I decided to make my printing reflect my process. With finished works you don’t want to show people your process, but if the intention IS the process itself then it suddenly makes the work far more exciting. And that’s exactly the point. If I’ve created something new and unique that no one was expecting, and that isn’t necessarily referenced by me, then I’ve done my job. Otherwise everything becomes a monotonous montage of what you are used to and nothing sticks out, nothing is spectacular. But Pat was insistent that I get outside of myself, find new ways of doing what I already knew so well, if only to renew and refresh the spirit.”
“Pat Merrill was a master printer, artist, curator, teacher, scholar, philosopher, Vietnam veteran, a critical mind, an advocate for the peace movement. We shared similar world views that allowed us to vibe off one another throughout the creation of this series, and in many ways that dialogue is captured in this work. The end result, what it does for me as an artist, when I come back to my paintings it amazingly improves my realism, my structural design, or my understanding of the physical form so that there exists a symbiotic relationship wherein one supports the other. When Pat passed in 2010 he left behind this legacy of discovery. With the recent passing of another great master printer, Richard Duardo, a huge hole in Los Angeles culture was exposed and it is to these great teachers I dedicate this exhibition.”
Images courtesy of Birdman
Unwell Bunny has a rather hectic show coming up in Paris. Watch this space for an interview as well as a video drop for the upcoming show. It’s going to be huge!
Stephen Ives – ‘Bleak’- opening Friday March 20 from 6-9pm and on display until Sunday April 5 at Backwoods Gallery. Second show ‘Fragment’ opens April 3.
Ben EINE recently unveiled his latest mural on the British Embassy, Abu Dhabi in the presence of his excellency Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan.
Ahead of his debut solo show in the Gulf region, EINE has created a 40-metre outdoor artwork on the perimeter wall of the British Embassy in Abu Dhabi. In a truly ground-breaking moment for the art scene in the region, His Excellency Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan joined Her Majesty’s Ambassador Philip Parham and British Council Country Director, Marc Jessel to inaugurate the wall, with His Excellency Sheikh Nahyan taking up a spray can for the first time, to personally ‘tag’ the wall.
Last weekend, WALLWORKS presented the gallery’s first solo exhibition from Nicer of TATS Cru entitled “Naughty but Nicer,” a pin-up inspired extravaganza from the graffiti legend. You’ll notice quickly from a few of the photos the rich attention to detail in the figures with layers of spray paint and tags in the background. Nicer beautifully took the idea of the traditional “pin-up” updating it to reference today’s ideas of beauty.
Hector “Nicer” Nazario began painting in the graffiti era of New York City / The Bronx in the 1970’s and 80’s making huge contributions to the art form. He is known well as a top graffiti legend and in 1996 joined two other artists (Bio and BG183, to make up the first graffiti company, TATS CRU. Since then they have been continuing to show the universe the importance of graffiti working on countless gallery exhibits and big projects throughout NYC and worldwide.
You can catch the show through March 25, 2015 at 39 Bruckner Blvd., a few short blocks from the 6 Train/3rd Ave/138th St., The Bronx, NY, USA.
Visit http://www.wallworksny.com for more information and here: http://tatscru.net to learn more about Nicer and TATS CRU.
Currently based in Sydney and Melbourne, Work-Shop is a creative concept that claims it will broaden your horizons and help you unleash your inner awesome. Their Sydney digs are also engulfed in some pretty dope art. We recently caught the 23rd Key stencil workshop, and whilst there ran into co-founder Chester. He spills the beans…..
Damo: What is Work-Shop?
Chester: Work-Shop is all about creativity and community. We run a really fun range of classes taught by a rock-star line up of Australia’s finest creative talent. You can learn anything from aerosol art and typography through to tattoo illustration and screen printing. Our aim is to help people unleash their inner awesome and give them skills to live a creatively enriched life.
A couple of weeks ago, I got the opportunity to drop in to the studio of Mr Remi Rough.
Remi (featured in VNA issue 18) has been involved in the London graffiti scene since the 1980’s and now as well as still being active in the mural scene he has carved a very successful art career with exhibitions in galleries in Paris, Perth, Tokyo, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Hong Kong and more.
Nestled deep in South London’s Peckham/East Dulwich area, the studio was bustling with new work and a couple of older gems that where waiting to be taken to his new ‘Previously’ retrospective show at Morgan Furniture. This show is a little different as Remi explained as its a selection of older pieces ranging from 2009 – 2012 with some totally unseen work from that era.
The exhibition runs from the 11th -27th March Mon-Fri, 9.30-5.30
1 Dallington Street, Clerkenwell,
London EC1V 0BH UK
Have a look at some of our exclusive snaps from the studio visit…