I’ve always been mesmerized by 3-D graffiti and Venice, Italy’s Peeta is one if its masters. I’ve seen his pieces on the streets of Brooklyn and at 5-Pointz in Queens, but I wasn’t quite sure how his artwork would transfer to a canvas. Thanks to the recent Robots Will Kill exhibit at the Vincent Michael Gallery in Philadelphia, I found out. The canvasses captivate — almost as much as the walls do! The exhibit continues through Saturday at 1050 North Hancock Street.
Joe Iurato, an artist whose stencil for The Underbelly Project was one of my favorite artworks there, is part of a show opening this week at Vincent Michael Gallery in Philadelphia. Natural Selections/Salvation includes work from Joe as well as Shai Dahan. It opens today, Friday the 4th, and runs through the 25th. I don’t know much about Shai, but I’ve really enjoyed what I’ve seen from Joe. Here’s one of his stencils in the show:
For more previews and some perspective on what Joe Iurato’s half of the show is about, check out a more extensive post on Brooklyn Street Art.
Photos by RJ Rushmore and courtesy of Vincent Michael Gallery
Last week, Jordan Seiler from PublicAdCampaign was here in Philadelphia for Taking From The Tip Jar, his solo show at Vincent Michael Gallery. While in town, Jordan didn’t just hang his show. He also put up a few pieces outdoors. The piece below is, I think, Jordan first street piece that isn’t over advertising.
Outdoors, Jordan brought his usual energy and made the streets of Philadelphia a brighter place. I think his art going over advertisements is one of the most important things that street art can do. Often, people (including myself) have said that good street art is something that brings a smile to your face or makes you think because something has been added to your environment, but Jordan’s art can have just as powerful an effect (but not an impact) by removing branding from the environment. An example: Advertising can make people feel like crap about themselves and convince them to buy crap they don’t need to feel better about themselves. By removing that advertisement, somebody might not feel better about themselves, but don’t feel worse. They have a better day without even realizing it.
Indoors at Taking From The Tip Jar, the artwork was extremely conceptual, which was not immediately apparent. At first, the glance, it’s a drawing of a girl in high heel or underwear, so of course I’m drawn in to look at that. Clearly, Jordan has thought about advertising long enough to know that sex sells. Or he’s been listening to Bill Hicks. Realistically though, the drawings are average. Would they make good street art? Yes. Are they an improvement over the advertisements in phone booths? Hell yes. But the drawings just don’t have that much to offer if you intend to look at them for more than a moment or two. But the drawings aren’t what Jordan’s show is about. It’s about the frames. My favorite work in the show may have actually been an empty frame on the wall.
Everything in Taking From The Tip Jar is framed the same way: in stolen phone booth advertisement frames. Even with his indoor art, Jordan has been able to continue his mission of disrupting public advertising. Once you’re aware of the frames, the entire show is changed. Now it’s about how the frames should be used both indoors and outdoors, if at all. For this reason, Taking From The Tip Jar is one of the stronger shows I’ve seen this year. It actually got me thinking.
Just got back from Jordan Seiler’s show at Vincent Michael Gallery. I’ll have more on that in the next few days, but I found an awesome store in the same area as the gallery: Jinxed. It sells cool toys and the like. Here’s what I didn’t write about this week while I was busy procrastinating and thinking about The Underbelly Project.
Elisa and maybe other Vandalog writers are going to disagree with me on this, but I’m not really digging Aakash Nihalani’s new work at his solo show in New York. I guess I just prefer Aakash outdoors.
Okay, this is just annoying. When you give people freedom to say anything, of course some asshole is going to be racist once in a while, but that doesn’t mean free speech should stop. These are college students, they should be able to think this through beyond the immediate things going on around them. Or just paint the damn tunnel in murals of people of all races and creeds holding hands?
Jordan Seiler is one of the artists that I’ve been most interested in recently. Through a great coincidence, his upcoming solo show at the Vincent Michael Gallery is the first gallery opening that I’ll be going to in Philadelphia. Taking From The Tip Jar opens on November 5th (also Guy Fawkes Night, which is sort of fitting I guess since Jordan is trying to change the world, but not by blowing things up) and you can be sure that I’ll be there.
For this show, Jordan has made art and framed it in phone booth advertising cases that have been removed from the street. This way, even in his gallery work Jordan is working to eliminate public advertising on some level.
Everything that I know about Jordan tells me that he is one street artist who is really at it for the “street art” and activism, not just to get his name in the press and get his art in galleries. And he’s not the type to take the transition indoors lightly. Although he’s produced work for group shows, this is Jordan’s first solo show in over 5 years. I can’t wait to see it in person.