Earlier this week, I hosted a movie night at The Wren’s Nest in Atlanta for the Living Walls Conference. Living Walls asked me to put together a list of some short films to show, and I ended up with 27. A few people have asked me to post those films online to share with friends or just to see a film that they missed while they were getting some food, so after the jump you’ll find embedded versions of all 27 films that were screened at the movie night (many of which have appeared on Vandalog before). Enjoy! Continue reading “Vandalog Movie Night as a blog post”
Earlier this month, Labrona and Troy Lovegates aka Other came down from Canada for a few days. Their first stop was Haverford, the small Philadelphia suburb where I go to college. At Haverford College, they painted a mural on the same building that Gaia painted last year. Then, they spent less than 24 hours in Baltimore, but took advantage of every second for painting and getting up. In Baltimore, Martha Cooper invited them to paint in SoWeBo, a part of town where she has been photographing the residents.
LNY was in Baltimore recently to check out Open Walls Baltimore (exactly what Caroline and I are doing right now actually). He had quite a time while there and put up a couple of very Baltimore-specific pieces. Here’s what he has to say:
So I got a story to tell you and some pics to share, see I ended up making these drawings in Baltimore by randomly running into this group of urban horseback riders galloping down an East Baltimore neighborhood while visiting Gaia and Nanook. It was Sunday so what would be better than to go on a horse ride right? So I took some pictures and then made some work to later find out that they are part of this old Baltimore tradition of Huckstering, basically going around in a horse drawn cart selling vegetables. These guys are also called Arabs, which comes from the term “street Arab” as in an abandoned kid who roams the slums, and I was lucky enough to find a stable in South West Baltimore where horses are bred and taken care of by the community. All of which blows my mind because these guys were so happy and excited about my posters as I was about meeting them and discovering this otherwise invisible history of a city I am completely alien to. As I was putting the work up I got a lot of feedback from the neighborhood and they read the images in so many different ways that I had never even considered; we talked about resilience, beauty, vision, excellence, dead space, gold, bling and the efforts of Sowebo to rejuvenate the neighborhood from the inside. I feel totally overwhelmed by the way the work was able to engage and be fulfilled by having this conversation with the neighborhood. All of this thanks to Martha Cooper who introduced me to Sowebo and has been constantly engaging and documenting the area, these are her pictures and a lil clip I took of the spot.
In 2010, Rizzoli published the definitive book on stickers and sticker art. That book is Stickers: Stuck-Up Piece of Crap: From Punk Rock to Contemporary Art by DB Burkeman and Monica LoCascio. DB seems to be the ultimate sticker fanatic, and his book tells the history of stickers in a way that only someone completely obsessed could possibly pull off. If you don’t know anything about stickers, you can skim through and get an introduction. If you’re already interested, Stuck-Up Piece of Crap gives a behind-the-scenes look at everything from early graffiti stickers to stickers in the music world to the homes and minds of sticker collectors. Of course, DB has quite a sticker collection himself. A small chunk of DB’s collection will be on display starting tomorrow at Maxwell Colette Gallery in Chicago, alongside a few other sticker-related events (and he and Martha Cooper will be signing books at the gallery on Saturday from 1-3pm). I spoke with DB last week…
RJ: Why do you think you are drawn to stickers?
DB Burkeman: It’s changed over the years for me, but now the simple answer is they are simply tiny portable works of art. That may have a different answer for each person.
RJ: In your collecting habits, do you differentiate between “art stickers” or “graffiti stickers” and stickers intended as advertisements?
DB: Never really thought about that, but I’m less drawn to stickers that are obviously advertisements. I’ve also become more picky since overdoing on the damn things : )
RJ: How many stickers do you have in your collection?
DB: Somewhere between 4000-6000 & growing, much to my family & friends annoyance. It can take a long time to get down the street with me, I keep stopping to check out lampposts etc. Continue reading “Interview with DB Burkeman”
Opening tonight at the East Village’s Dorian Grey Gallery is CLUB 57 & Friends featuring some of the early pioneers of the 1980’s East Village art scene and the CLUB 57 performance space. Both original works and legendary photographs are on display. Here is a small sampling:
Dress designed by LA II aka LA Roc, photo by Lois Stavsky
The opening reception is from 6 – 9pm this evening at 437 East 9th Street between 1st Ave and Ave A. The exhibit continues through October 9th. Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Sunday 12 – 7pm.
Martha Cooper‘s latest book is, on the surface, a bit different from what she’s best known for, but really it’s not so strange at all. Continuing with Martha Cooper’s tradition of capturing authentic and unorganized expressions of creativity, Remembering 9/11 is a book of photographs that Martha took of the street memorials that popped up around New York after 9/11. In addition to the paperback version, Remembering 9/11 is also available on iTunes as an ebook (which means you can read it on an iPhone, iPad or iPod). Most days, the ebook will be available for $5.99, but on September 11th, it will be downloadable on iTunes for free. In addition to photos, there is also an essay by Martha Cooper.
Earlier this week, JR got up at the historic mural spot on Bowery and Houston in New York City, most recently painted by Kenny Scharf. This photo is of DJ Two Bears, a man JR photographed at the Standing Rock Nation Native American reservation. Martha Cooper took this photo and has shots of the entire process on her blog.
An avid fan of both stickers and urban art, I love what Pawn Works has been up to: the design and installation of vending machines that makes the best of urban art available in sticker format. I recently had a chance to speak with one of its two founders, Seth Mooney, currently living in NYC. His partner, Nick Marzullo, is based in Chicago.
I love the concept of a vending machine that dispenses stickers featuring urban art. How did you guys come up with the idea? We thought it would be a great way to showcase contemporary artists and designers and make their work easily affordable and accessible to collectors.
You guys have an amazing roster of artists, and the stickers look fabulous. Not only have you featured some of my favorites – folks like C215, Dain and Gaia – but you’ve introduced me to artists whose work is new to me. How do you engage artists in your project? We’ve approached some artists and some are referred to us. Others contact us directly. The artists have complete control over their image. 10% of the stickers we print go directly to the artist. A small portion of the stickers printed are pooled and distributed in sticker packs among the sticker club’s members, as one of our goals is to connect artists from around the globe.
Where can we find these vending machines? We plan to place them in a variety of venues, including, of course, galleries and cafes. The first NYC gallery to have our sticker machine is Brooklynite in Bed-Stuy.
Do you collect stickers yourself? I’ve been collecting them for over 20 years, since I was 9 years old. I love stickers. They are the most portable genre of tangible art!
Do you design your own? I’ve done some but I’m far more focused on other people.
I see that your partner in Pawn Works, Nick Marzullo, is running a gallery in Chicago. How did you guys get into that? About 5-6 years ago, Nick started doing shows in friends’ apartments and representing their work at art fairs. In time, it led to the establishment of a gallery that features work by emerging contemporary artists. The current exhibit REPEAT OFFENDER features work by Gabriel Specter.
Have you a formal art background? I studied photography at Columbia College in Chicago and I also work as a photographer. But I consider myself primarily a “facilitator of the arts.”
Sounds good! I love what you’re doing and I look forward to seeing and collecting more of Pawn Work’s stickers.