Avoid pi aka Adam Void‘s latest solo show, an American Dream, opens this week at the MICA Decker Gallery at MICA in Baltimore. It’s always difficult to predict just what you’ll see at an Avoid pi show, but he says that the show includes work on themes including homelessness, evangelical religion, freight hopping, protest culture, surveillance and urbanization.
an American Dream opens on Friday from 5-7pm and run through April 1st.
It’s another slow week, but things should start to get going again soon. The holidays can’t last forever. Here are bits of news from around the web that didn’t make it into their own post here this week:
I wrote a list (with some help from Caroline Caldwell) for Complex.com of 10 street artists to watch in 2012. Let me know what you think in comments on this post or over on Complex.com.
This weekend I’ll be in Boston. If you have any ideas for what I should get up to, leave a comment. I’ll definitely be checking out Swoon’s installation at the ICA Boston. Here’s what’s been going on in street art while I’ve been locked in my room studying all week:
Mr. Brainwash has a show opening soon in LA, but it’s going to be full of other people’s art. Anyone can submit work to be wheatpasted around the exhibition. On the one hand, yay, artists can benefit from Mr. Brainwash’s stupid fame and hype. On the other hand, I guess Mr. Brainwash has acknowledged that he doesn’t have any ideas for art, so he’s just openly benefiting from the art of others to further his own art career. So it’s mutually beneficial, except that individual artists submitting work will gain a lot less from this arrangement than Mr. Brainwash will gain overall.
Abe Lincoln, Jr., John Ahearn, Adam VOID, Cahil Muraghu, Cake, Darkclouds, Droid, El Celso, Ellis Gallagher, Faro, John Fekner, Freedom, Gen2, Goya, Groser, Richard Hambleton, infinity, Ket, LSD Om, Matt Siren, Nohj Coley, OverUnder, Oze 108, Quel Beast, Royce Bannon, Sadue, Skewville, Stikman, Toofly, UFO, and even more artists are all part of a group show opening in New York on April 2nd. Pantheon: A history of art from the streets of New York City aims to bring together multiple generations of street art (and, to a lesser degree, graffiti) from New York City and tie them together into a cohesive history. There are some real under-appreciated gems in that line up like Richard Hambleton, Skewville, John Fekner, Don Leicht and Faro.
Pantheon will take place in New York City at chashama/Donnell Library Building, right across from MoMA and run through April 17th. I’m really disappointed that I won’t be able to see this show in person. It should make a nice counter-point to MOCA’s Art In The Streets show opening in LA around the same time. If you do make it to Pantheon, be sure to check out the catalog, which Vandalog’s Monica Campana has contributed to.
Here’s a little preview of some of the street work from artists in Pantheon:
As Brooklyn Street Art notes, AVOID and infinity are two smart guys. For me, a lot of the art AVOID pi and infinity make for galleries seems like it could, at first glance, be something drawn in a bored high school student’s notebooks during class, but the end result is much more considered and meaningful. It’s always seemed to me that there is much more going on in their artwork than what I can figure out, and that is part of while I enjoy it so much (kind of like this guy, but he’s even more out there).
The press release:
Thought provoking Street Artists AVOID pi & infinity team up for their first duo show together entitled Babel Code. Peering through a semiotic Petri dish intermixed with sub-conscious communication, Babel Code uses primitive and mystical sources as well as runic references, which charges the works of art with a power and energy beyond the objects themselves.
Babel Code challenges the viewer to reconsider the basic notions of communication and cultural mutation, while providing a closer look into the artist’s own techniques of non-verbal interactions. Building upon a symbolic language shared by both artists, their influences range from a resonance of mixed signals and errant transmissions.
Their symbolism ranges from introverted Platonic deliberation and chemical structures to numerology and DNA; anything and everything from hobo marks and astronomy to grammar diagrams and physics equations.
Here’s some of the artwork for the show:
And here’s a collaborative piece with both infinity and AVOID pi:
I touched on this issue the other day, but I thought there was more to be said and some examples to be given.
There are a few graffiti writers who are blurring the line between graffiti and street art by painting trademark characters or symbols instead of, or in addition to, their names. Of course, painting characters has been around since the earliest days of graffiti, but in recent years, certain crews and writers have taken that a step further.
Here are a few examples of writers who I think are really pioneering a new form of character based graffiti. I think it could, and should, be one important direction for graffiti and street art in the coming years.
Factory Fresh has an interesting show starting soon. It features Avoid, Bloke, and Faro; three guys who are really changing the face of New York graffiti. I completely agree with this press release in that the more graphic form of graffiti these artists represent is the next wave, and is poised to become even more important in the coming years.
Factory Fresh and Mighty Tanaka present:
Friday, June 5th 7-10pm Opens during Bushwick Open Studio Weekend. If you haven’t checked out our new neighborhood this is the weekend to do it. It will also be Factory Fresh’s First Year Anniversary.
This June AVOID, BLOKE and FARO converge at Factory Fresh, bringing with them an assorted collection of unique styles that exemplify the next generation of NYC street art and graffiti. The three artists known on the streets for ridiculously massive tags, culturally inspired graffiti and paper airplanes and airships have caught many peoples eye in both Manhattan and Brooklyn. On June 5th they will present their artwork as a group in a gallery for the first time.
The show is based on the year 2012, which represents a notion of change and transition within the world, marking the end of the Mayan calendar. Many view this year with apprehension, prophesying apocalypse, climate meltdown or a spiritual awakening. Currently, through the economic crisis and constant warfare, an artistic shift has taken place on the streets of New York City. Artists AVOID, BLOKE and FARO signify a changing of the guard in graffiti and street art. Meshing these two individual cultures into one, these three artists represent the overall change of how individuals view street art and graffiti, bringing it together as one.
AVOID, BLOKE and FARO have been constant contributors to the painted interpretation of the urban environment for many years now. Each artist has developed a text-based style as well as iconic imagery that have become ubiquitous details within our daily lives. Through blending their ideals and styles, they have created a symbolized view of the streets that transcends one world and ushers in another.
As we approach this time of great change, the 2012 show places the viewer in the middle of the transformation, setting about on an adventure through a shifting paradigm of the world. It seeks to enlighten and project the change that is constantly around us with the progression of both society and art.