The Street Museum of Art has launched its second venture in “guerilla curating” in London’s artsy district of Shoreditch. Like their first exhibition, it’s basically a self-guided street art tour with museum-like wall labels. The exhibition’s title, “Beyond Banksy: Not another gift shop“, is likely a tongue and cheek reference to the commercial attention that street art has received in London these past few years, with Banksy at the forefront of the movement. In all fairness, Banksy has become enough of a household name that he and Exit Through the Gift Shop are frequently my reference points when speaking about street art to people outside this niche community. For that, I am thankful that I get to SMoA advises that the name is not meant to undermine the work of the beloved stencil artist, rather it is to encourage those who have Banksy as their token understanding of street art to the diversity of the other talented artists on the streets. This exhibition highlights works by artists such as C215, Christiaan Nagel, Eine, Mobstr, Pablo Delgado, Phlegm, Roa, Run, Skewville, Space Invader, Stik and Swoon.
The map of the exhibited works are available here and the hours are… well, unlimited.
mobstr has been busy lately with a few new clever text-based stencils around London and a print release that is a bit different from the standard fare from printers like Pictures on Walls or The Outsiders.
What makes mobstr’s latest print, entitled This One, interesting is that it’s a reversible doublesided print with a different image printed on each side of the paper. While I don’t love the images, the idea is cool. This One is an edition of 35 and can be purchased online for £140.
In part 4 of my series of posts about this year’s Nuart Festival (here are parts one, two, and three), I’ve finally gotten to the murals and more traditional street work of this year’s festival. This year, Nuart is responsible for new murals in Stavanger by Niels “Shoe” Meulman, Ron English, Dolk, How&Nosm, Mobstr and Eine.
I’ll be participating in three events at Nuart Plus, a 3-day international summit on street art taking place during the festival. Evan Pricco, Tristan Manco, Carlo McCormick and others will be speaking there too. Here’s what I’m involved in: On the 27th, Jordan Seiler and I will be giving a tour of some of the art (and ads) in Stavanger; On the 28th, Carlo McCormick and I will be at Martinique, a cafe and pub, to debate about whether or not one can truly appreciate street art on the internet; On the 29th, Evan Pricco, Tristan Manco and I will be on a panel about street art and the internet moderated by Eirik Sjåholm Knudsen. Sorry if I’m focusing a bit too much on my own stuff, but I’m really excited to be going to Nuart, especially since I’ll be speaking alongside so many of my friends and idols.
There will of course also be an indoor art component to the festival.
Nuart’s street work begins September 20th, the indoor show opens on the 29th at Tuo Scene and the panels and talks will take place on the 27th-29th.
Last Friday I headed to the opening of Good Times Roll at High Roller Society. The gallery played host to a group show comprising of 39 artists, all with differing styles, using different mediums, and with varied influences and backgrounds. In fact it was rather refreshing and a highly interesting creative mix of people presenting their ultimate passion.
Tonight (29th June) sees the opening of Good Times Roll at High Roller Society. The show presents “an eclectic selection of 39 international artists for a salon style Summer Show that finally heats things up a bit this season. Ranging from the street to the studio, painters, sculptors, photographers and printmakers hailing from Australia, Brazil, Portugal, USA and UK join forces to showcase their wares through their passion for different creative practices.”
Following the opening, the t-shirt and letterpress printing workshops with artwork by Rowdy, Sweet Toof & others will keep you going back for more. So check out the opening party tonight, add these following dates to your diary and let the good times roll.
Workshops (minimum donation of £3 per workshop):
T-Shirt Printing: with COPYEM12 –– 30th June and 1st July 1.00–5.00pm (both days)
Letterpress Printing : with Alex Booker –– 29th July 1.00–5.00pm
I have always been a fan of colourful character based street art. For me personally, there is only so much of the polar opposite, stencil art, I can take before I find it all merges into one large mess of overlapping ideas and style. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy the use of stencils on the street, and there are a few artists that I really appreciate, Mobstr for one. But I rather enjoy seeing streets of brightly painted walls and shutters with a variety of characters and shapes popping out at me.
There seems to be a steady increase in the amount of artists painting in this style, one in which I feel the Burning Candy Crew recently promoted in the UK, but has been pushed by a variety of other artists including Malarky, Lucas, Ronzo, Billy, Sweet Toof, Paul Insect, Vinnie Nylon, and Mr. Penfold, among others.
My enjoyment of character based street art has been stirred this week by Pez, painting some nice pieces in the run up to his show at Tony’s Gallery, but also through Mr. Penfold’s exploits in Birmingham. I hope you enjoy them all as much I as do.
Street art is moving online. If you’re a regular reader, you’ve probably noticed that street artists are making art on the street for the purpose of photographing it and sharing the images online (and maybe you remember theseposts). I think it is too early to say for sure whether this transition is a good thing, a bad thing or just change, but it has gotten so pervasive that street art that comments on street art now often focuses on pointing out this transition from in-the-flesh street art to art that was intended to be shared digitally. Here are a few recent examples…
1. Reblog This by mobstr (shown above). This piece was painted in Shoreditch, a spot where it would have been seen by countless street art photographers, but it only lasted 7 hours before getting buffed. No matter. Mobstr got a great photo of it and put that photo online. Now it’s all ready to be reblogged on tumblr.
2. What ever happened to street art on the street? by Lush. Both a comment on the proliferation of street art online and the commercialization of the movement. This image is available as a print at Backwoods Gallery. Lush has also made animated gifs of his work, something else that can only be viewed digitally but is created on the street.
3. Fine by Elfo. The text is in Italian and references this work by Giuseppe Chiari. It translates to “Street art is finished, stop all together.” Rather than painting this in a busy city center, Elfo put it on an abandoned building in what looks like the countryside. The audience for the work is (primarily) the audience that will see this photo online and Elfo is well aware of that. Does this mean the death of street art though? Of course not. Chiari continued making art after his declaration, and Elfo has already made more street art. It’s just that Elfo’s public is primarily a digital one, either seeking his work out or coming across it randomly on a site like tumblr, but either way viewing it for free.
For more about this shift towards a digital street and a digital public, here are twoposts I wrote a while ago.
I’ve recently been spending a lot of my recent free time with a paint roller getting the inside of a building to look very white, so to counterbalance that, I’ve been seeking out some more disruptive uses of paint rollers. Here are a few recent pieces that I came across.