Brooklyn Street Art recently kicked off the 7th part of Urban Nation’s Project M series. We caught up with BSA directors Steven P. Harrington and Jaime Rojo to get the lowdown on their part of the project.
VNA: So, why did you guys put this together?
Steve: We had a couple of goals when putting ‘Persons of Interest’ together – one was to counter the cultural imperialism that can happen in these large street art/mural festivals around the globe right now. It is sort of in response to a critique we have heard in the last few years as an international circuit of recurring Street Art “names” go into a host city and leave work that people can’t relate to personally. We wanted to leave work that people in Berlin could feel connected to.
Jaime: We also asked each of the 12 artists to do research and produce a portrait of someone who lived in Germany or who lives in Brooklyn and is from Germany – a cultural exchange that highlights the real connection that Brooklyn and Berlin artists communities have had for decades, something we’re both personally familiar with as artists. The results have been nothing short of amazing (and gratifying) to us, because each of the artists chose people who they also relate to – realist and Dadaist artists, social and political activists, a writer and poet, an icon of the silver screen, Turkish immigrants, even a German photographer who lives next door to one of the artists in Brooklyn.