Bast‘s latest solo show opens later this month at Eric Firestone Gallery in East Hampton, New York. I can’t wait to see what Bast has made for Seafoam. This is the first time in my memory that Bast has exhibited his sculptures (save for the Deluxx Fluxx Arcade where he collaborated with Faile). Of course, I could be completely forgetting something at the moment. Can you think of other sculptures by Bast? Regardless, the sculptures in Seafoam are made from detritus found at Coney Island.
Eric Firestone asked me to write something about Bast for this show, so here are my thoughts about the man… Bäst has spent over a decade stenciling, postering and tagging the streets of New York City, where he has proven himself a master of a gritty urban aesthetic and a representative of the resilient spirit of the city’s underdogs. Through the complex physical layering of collage, figures, advertisements, and patterns, Bäst often represents contradictory conceptions of the city in a single artwork, hiding the rough-and-tumble reality of life within beauty, humor, and Disneyfication. Is Bäst an untrained obsessive-labeled-artist or a master observer and creator? The man behind the name hides in the shadows as one of the last great anonymous street artists. Bäst is a man who knows his city, but we may never really know him.
Seafoam opens June 15th (6-8pm) and runs through July 3rd.
Photo courtesy of Eric Firestone Gallery