Tag Archives: Graffiti

The Bridges of Graffiti @ Venice Biennale ’15

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The cover artist of our current issue #30, Futura, was recently in Venice, taking part in a large group show, working next to other legends such as Boris Tellegen, Doze Green, Eron, Futura, Mode2, SKKI ©, Jayone, Todd James, Teach, and Zero-T. As one of the collateral events of 56th International Venice Biennale Arte, “The Bridges Of Graffiti” opened on May 9th in the presence of participating artists, and will stay on view until November 22nd at the Terminal S. Basilio.
The idea of this coherent show is to present the wide spectrum of creatives that are coming from the graffiti world. Differing in age, geographical origin and influences as well as their current work practice, the artists turned the abandoned ship terminal into an “art terminal”. Futura showed a large abstract triptych along with another large canvas piece, an iron sculpture of his legendary Pointman character, and painted a large mural which is probably the largest abstract works he ever created. Other artist also showed their signature works – Mode 2 painted large figurative mural using only outlines, Doze Green did a similar thing using his distinctive line work, Teach displayed some interesting work using industrial production as an art process, while Todd James once again showed his Vandal room installation. Along with these paintings, murals, sculptures and installations, two legendary photographers, Martha Cooper and Henry Chalfant, showed their photos featured in legendary Subway Art book. Martha displayed her prints on a large clustered wall, while Henry’s photos of NYC trains were effectively projected on large real train size panels.

TheBridgesOfGraffiti.com

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Preview of Sowat’s “Ars Longa Vita Brevis” solo show in Geneve

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Opening tonight (April 23rd) in Geneva, Sowat will be having a solo show with Richard & Le Feuvre Gallery in Switzerland. For this exhibition French-American graffiti artist prepared new body of work that is based on calligraphy and typography, visual languages he fell in love during his stays in California years ago.

Known as a part of the infamous Da Mental Vaporz crew, Sowat has exhibited and painted both legal or illegal all around France and Europe, including working at the Palais de Tokyo. For this particular show he created works on canvas an paper, using various techniques from bamboo stick to acrylic and spray can, as well as an exclusive limited edition lithograph release. Whether understandable or abstract, the works are carrying obvious energy that was put into their creation, juxtaposing the rawness and quickness of graffiti tags with the precision and patience of traditional calligraphy techniques, as seen from these studio preview photos we received.

Sowat1.com
RLFgallery.com

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“Wipe Out: An Explosition of Invader in Hong Kong”

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French mosaicist Invader will be returning to Hong Kong next month for his first ever solo show there.

“Wipe Out” was conceived as a reaction to the artist’s recent negative experiences in the country, when the vast majority of Invader’s public mosaic works in Hong Kong & Kowloon were removed by the Chinese government in 2014 for “safety reasons”.

Refusing to let his global invasion plans be thwarted, Invader’s teamed up with the Hong Kong Contemporary Art Foundation and Le French May for this subsequent event at The Qube, PMQ.

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The exhibition will intersperse recreations of the removed pieces with photos taken of the originals in situ. Mosaics feature dragons, dollar signs and the popular Japanese manga character Doraemon alongside his already familiar 8-bit characters. Excitingly, the artist has created a sculpture in tribute to Hong Kong legend Bruce Lee for the show, and uses LED artworks for the first time in his career.

Attendees can pick up souvenir stickers from custom vending machines at the venue, whilst an accompanying book and “FlashInvaders” app will also be on sale. The app can be used whilst at the exhibition, offering increased immersion and interaction for users. All sales at “Wipe Out” will go to Hong Kong charity Pathfinders.

“Wipe Out: An Explosition of Invader in Hong Kong” will run at The Qube, PMQ from 2 – 17 May.

The Qube
PMQ, 35 Aberdeen Street
Central
Hong Kong

El Mac paints new murals in Ciudad Juarez & El Paso

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After a being unable to work on big projects for about a year due to health issues, El Mac is back on track and making up for the “lost time”. Last December he took part in an independent project together with his long time friend David ‘Grave’ Herrera, and painted new striking murals in Ciudad Juarez & El Paso.
Being based in that area for the short time in the 90s, the artist developed an appreciation for that boarder region and sensibility for all the violence, corruption and injustice that has plagued that region for the last near-decade. Both murals were based on his own photos that he took in 2012 during Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity (Caravana por la Paz con Justicia y Dignidad), and were created with his unique technique using only aerosol and fatcaps.
In Ciudad Juarez he painted an “Juarense y Poderosa”, based on photos of a young woman who lost her mother to kidnapping. And in El Paso he created “Ánimo Sin Fronteras”, based on photos of a man whose son was disappeared by corrupt police. In artist’s eyes both of these individuals represent countless others who’ve lost and suffered in recent years.

Mac-arte.blogspot.com
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JOHN KAYE – Interview

Known and respected throughout the graffiti scene for his past and present creative conquests, Australian artist JOHN KAYE has no problems getting up and going all out. More recently recognized for his ink illustrations and large-scale mural work, his art has been appearing in multiple galleries and showcases around the world.

We catch up with John to chat about his ideas, artistic integrity and creative influence.

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VNA: Talk us through some projects you’re working on at the moment.

JOHN KAYE: My main priority at the moment has just been to draw or paint something everyday. It’s been going well so far. Other than that I’ve been lucky enough to team up with a few different people to work on some collaboration stuff that has been really fun and a massive learning curve. I’ve also been working on developing some limited run clothing that hopefully I can show everyone soon and I’ve been trying to save some money for a few trips I want to go on this year.

VNA: A lot of your illustrations and print series work features poetic lines with underlining themes surrounding crime, punishment and rail transport.

‘All You See Is Crime In The City’, ‘Find The Right Ways To Do The Wrong Things’, ‘From The Cradle to the Grave’, ‘Graffiti Gets You Nowhere’, ‘Better Seen Than Heard’

Obviously these topics are a source of experience and inspiration to you, can you tell us a bit about why?

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JOHN KAYE: Traveling and graffiti have both been huge parts of my life. When I was a kid, I was always fascinated by the different graffiti everywhere I went. Generally everything I do is a form of personal expression. The work you are referring to all just relates to things that have happened around me at a certain point in time. As my experiences change, so do the things I create. If people relate to my work, or interpret it in a certain way, I think that’s a good thing. Although, it’s never really the initial intent.

VNA: Do you think your past experiences as an artist have affected your current style?

JOHN KAYE: Definitely. My experiences are the most valuable thing I have. It doesn’t matter if they are mistakes I have made, or things I have enjoyed. They will always affect what I do in some way.

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VNA: Why do you think graffiti and street influenced artists are now becoming so prevalent in the mainstream art scene?

JOHN KAYE: The Internet has probably played a massive part in that happening. Everybody today has access to so much more information. Obviously people are constantly pushing boundaries and everything is always developing. So I guess as things evolve and change, people begin to pay more attention and the audience naturally grows.

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VNA: It seems ironic that artists such as yourself who’ve come from such colourfully illicit artistic backgrounds are now being commissioned by the same individuals and associations who once strongly opposed the art form. What’s your opinion on this?

JOHN KAYE: Personally I’m very particular about who I choose to work with. I feel like the individuals and associations who once strongly opposed the art form haven’t really been converted into enthusiasts of any sort. All that’s happening is that they are becoming more aware of the possibility to use artwork to there own advantage.

In my experience when I’ve had offers to work with certain people, it’s easy to tell what their motivations are. Sometimes they are very genuine and other times it’s because they are looking to use controlled artwork as a solution to a problem, or something that they can benefit from. I’m not saying that there is anything wrong with that. I think it’s great that people are open minded enough to take these things into consideration. I just feel that it’s extremely important as an artist to understand why you are doing something in the first place, and then to continuously keep that in mind as you carry on with whatever you decide to do.

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VNA: Tell us about home.

JOHN KAYE: Haha, okay. Home at the moment is a confusing subject. I feel like Melbourne is the closest thing to being home. When I was really young I moved around all the time between a bunch of different towns and cities. Nothing has really changed. I still have trouble spending very long in one place. Recently though, I’ve been spending the majority of my time on the Gold Coast. I have some very patient friends that have tolerated me leaving my belongings all over the place and have been kind enough to let me stay with them from time to time, which is lucky.

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VNA: You’re heading to Melbourne next week, yeah? What’s on the cards?

JOHN KAYE: A friend of mine is opening a burrito bar with a skate bowl in Melbourne next month and I’ve been working on some illustrations for him, so it seemed like a good enough excuse. I try to spend as much of my spare time down there as I can. I really enjoy painting in Melbourne. The weather is nice and the days are long.

VNA: If you could work with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

JOH KAYE: If I can pick someone who’s deceased, I’d probably say Nicola Tesla. He had such crazy ideas and visions to create things that would have massive impacts and he continued to work towards them no matter how insane he appeared. If that’s not allowed, then I would probably have to go with Jay Z. Everything he does, he does well.

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www.johnkayeart.com / @johnkayeart

 Image Credit John Kaye Art and Tim Caraco

Lie Cheat Steal – Run The Jewels/Tag The Jewels

Invade Tv Productions and Phantoms of Space made us this little behind the scenes flick Run The Jewels’ latest Music Video ‘Lie Cheat Steal’ Directed by Ruff Mercy of My Accomplice, featuring artwork by Onga, Sepr and Jon 5.

Growing up in the 80s, loving all things hip hop… El-P and Killer Mike talk about two elements of the genre; Graffiti and Rap Music and about how much this piece means to them, and the significance of hip hop culture that leads to artist collaborations like this.

Artists Jon 5, Onga and Sepr create an amazing Run The Jewels piece in Shoreditch, London for the music video.

Artists:

Onga: www.instagram.com/ongab
Sepr: www.instagram.com/sepr
Jon 5: www.instagram.com/jon425th

With props to Chrome & Black for paint support.

www.chromeandblack.com

Directed by James Sharrock www.facebook.com/jamessharrockphotographer
Edited by Trevor Poulsum www.facebook.com/trevor.poulsum
Camera: James Sharrock and Doug Gillen
Interview by Doug Gillen www.facebook.com/fifthwalltv

You can watch the full music video here:

www.runthejewels.net

www.myaccomplice.co.uk

www.ruffmercy.com

www.invade.tv

Horfee’s “Traditional Occupations” solo show

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Notorious French artist Horfee opened a solo show @ Ruttkowski;68 gallery in Cologne on Friday 5th of December. The artist who has both formal artistic education, but is most know for his illegal graffiti works, gave a good overview of his current works through “Traditional Occupations”.

Inspired by everything from European abstract painting to homemade tattoos, vintage animations and underground comics, Horfee is no stranger to using various medias and techniques for creating recognizable works. His colorful creations with loose edges are presented in form of acrylic and spray paint canvases, works on glass, sculptures and even embroidery. Through his work Horfee proudly shows the flaws of his techniques by creating melting imagery that is conforming to anything but ordinary or traditional.

MayContainFilth.com
Ruttkowski68.com
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Word To Mother – Too Blessed To Be Stressed

We got a cup of tea with London-based artists Word To Mother ahead of his latest show, Too Blessed To Be Stressed, at Stolen Space Gallery, opening Thursday 9th October. Getting the rundown on his development as an artist and his other love, tattooing.

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