Tim Hans shoots… Zio Ziegler and Never

Zio and Never

One afternoon this past summer, Tim Hans went up to a Brooklyn rooftop and found a bunch of artists having fun and painting together. In November, that rooftop became associated with a horrible tragedy. While the murders that occurred nearby have nothing to do with the art that was painted there, it seems important to acknowledge how the space changed after these photos were taken. At the time, this rooftop was one of the most interesting and fun spaces for artists to paint in New York City, and Tim’s came way with some beautiful photos, so it seemed a shame let tragedy define that space and leave these images locked away. Two of the artists that Tim photographed on that rooftop were Never and Zio Ziegler, who were working on a collaborative piece. In our continuing series of photo-portraits of artists by Tim, and I asked Zio and Never the same set of questions over email.

RJ: How did you end up collaborating that day?

Never: The dialogue went something like this…
Zio: Ayo, I’m in Brooklyn with my homey Ian Ross. I like your SHIT, wanna hang out?
Never: Werd, I like your SHIT too. We should get a hotel, here’s my number…Sext me.  (We meet in person for the first time) Never: So what kind of SHIT brings you to NY?
Zio: I painted some SHIT on the side of a surf shop in Williamsburg.
Never: Werd, got any scrap cans? Some people are hanging out and painting some SHIT on a rooftop nearby right now. Wanna go?
Zio: SHIT yeah, Lets do it!

Zio: I’ve admired Nev’s work for a while, and we have a bunch of mutual friends, so I gave him a shout when I was in NY. I had painted the side of Pilgrim, and despite having food poisoning wanted to make the most of the NYC trip, and paint as many spots as possible. We met up in Bushwick, and started to look for walls, ended up on a rooftop and jammed out.

RJ: Do you usually like collaborating on murals?

Never: I do like collaborating on murals but I’m pretty selective of who I do that with. I don’t really consider what we did that day a collaboration as there wasn’t really any head-butting involved. I just did the same SHIT I always do and he put a skull under it. It was more of a quick little jam session than anything. At some point we intend to do a for real collabo. We’re both busy dudes, but we’ll make it happen at some point. And when we do, our highly acclaimed PR team will ensure that it’s picked up by every news outlet in existence. Just you fucking wait.

Zio: I don’t collab a lot, but when I do its because I really admire the other artists process and work. The piece and the conversation go in parallel and when that happens, it’s all good.

RJ: How does working with another artist change your own process?

Never: It forces you to try out different techniques than your own and helps you work outside of your usual comfort zone.

Zio: It allows me to expand my perspective, and see more possibilities in creating my pieces.

RJ: How have the events that took place so nearby your mural affected you or how you think of that piece?

Never: The work I did on that roof has nothing to do with the horrible event that happened up there several months after. I’m thankful I got to meet Icy and Sot and they were so kind to invite us to paint with them. More so, I’m thankful those two are still here with us today. It was a fun day with good company, that’s all there is to it.

Zio: The work has nothing at all to do with that terrible event, It’s awful and my heart goes out to everyone effected by that tragedy.

RJ: Which of you is cooler?

Never: Zio has more followers on Instagram than I do so he’s definitely cooler.

Zio: Never for sure, he’s got more friends on myspace.

Photo by Tim Hans

Visiting the Atlanta Prison Farm

Feral Child
Feral Child

Earlier this month, Caroline and I and some friends (guided by Rob Dunalewicz) visited the abandoned Atlanta Prison Farm, a prison that was in active use for a good chunk of the 20th century and it now mostly abandoned, save for the occasional police training exercise. Today, the prison is covered in street art and graffiti. For me, it was interesting to see old work by Never, from before he began to focus on his owl characters that you can see around Brooklyn today. What’s so cool for me about artists working in abandoned spaces is that there seems to be a freedom to a lot of the work that isn’t found in their work when they are working in public spaces or making work for sale. Here’s a sampling of what we saw:




Continue reading “Visiting the Atlanta Prison Farm”

The Centre-Fuge Public Art Project – Cycle 4 : BEAU, Deps1, The Muffin Man, Never, Sheryo, the Yok & more

BEAU adds finishing touches to his mural; the image on the right is by Jim Joe

Conceived by First Street residents Pebbles Russell and Jonathan Neville in memory of their friend, Mike Hamm, The Centre-Fuge Art Project has transformed an abandoned trailer into a vibrant canvas. This weekend marked its fourth cycle engaging an eclectic range of artists to share their visions with passersby on First Street off First Avenue in Manhattan’s East Village. Here are some photos captured over the weekend:

Deps1 with a message
Never with the Muffin Man at work on the right
The Yok & Sheryo together again

Photos by Tara Murray & Lois Stavsky

Those Blazing Bushwick Graffiti Walls: Rubin 415, Never, Preta & more

Those graffiti murals in Bushwick are among the most vibrant anywhere. They also attest to graffiti’s continual evolution. And while so many “street artists” who grace our walls with wonderfully provocative images often retire from the streets, most of the writers keep on doing their thing in the public sphere. Here are a few images we saw this morning:

Rubin 415, photo by Lois Stavsky
Never, photo by Lois Stavsky
Preta, photo by Lois Stavsky
Artist to be identified, photo by Damien Kelly

Photos by Lois Stavsky and Damien Kelly

Even more from Living Walls

Ever and Freddy Sam. Photo by nickmickolas

In what is likely the second-t0-last post of murals from Living Walls in Atlanta, here’s work by Ever, Freddy Sam, Never, Gawd, Labrona, OverUnder, LNY, Sharktoof, Feral Child, Entes and Pesimo.

Feral Child. Photo by Feral Child
Labrona, Overunder and Gawd. Photo by nickmickolas
Entes and Pesimo. Photo by nickmickolas
Never. Photo by nickmickolas
LNY. Photo by nickmickolas
Sharktoof. Photo by Greg Mike

Photos by Greg Mike, Feral Child and nickmickolas

It’s Been Busy @ 5Pointz

Although 5Pointz officially launches its 2011 season today, writers from abroad — as well as local ones — have been busy this past month.  The pieces don’t often last long, and we’ve been trying to document this Long Island City graffiti mecca weekly.  Here are three (of many) faves that have recently surfaced:

The Yok and Creepy from Australia, photo by Lois Stavsky
Never @ Work, photo by Yasmin Jones
Meres, et al, photo by Lois Stavsky