Au revoir, Kenny Scharf! French street artist JR’s Inside Out Project continues to gain momentum, as a group pasted a portrait from the project titled “Lakota, Dakota Nation” at the Houston/Bowery mural wall yesterday afternoon. This group action is intended to shine a light on the rich culture of the Standing Rock and Pineridge Native Reservations and their struggle to hold onto their native way of life, even in the face of impoverishment & unspeakable hardships.
Another of JR’s large scale portraits from Inside Out Project can be seen in SoHo (or here) and I am told that there will be many more popping up around the boroughs in the days to come!
The TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) prize is awarded annually to an “exceptional individual” with “one wish to change the world”. Past winners have included chef Jamie Oliver, author David Eggers, president Bill Clinton and U2’s Bono. Last October it was announced that the street artist/photographer JR would be the 2011 recipient of TED’s $100,000 award. And with this came an opportunity for JR to state and fulfill his wish: “I wish for you to stand up for what you care about by participating in a global art project, and together we’ll turn the world…INSIDE OUT.”
photo by Becki Fuller
Inside Out is a large-scale participatory art project that transforms messages of personal identity into pieces of artistic work. By going to the Inside Out website, anyone can upload the black and white portrait of their choice, with the challenge to reveal and share the untold stories and images of people around the world. Your portrait will then be made into posters and sent back to you to be exhibited in your own community. Several residences in Park Slope have already kicked things off, with portraits of local business owners and community members pasted along the steep steps to their homes. One woman that I spoke to was excited to see the owner of the nearby deli as well as the owner of the restaurant at the end of the block. She exclaimed “I know them all because I live right here!”. Several other people asked me if I could make the same portraits for them. Clearly, if the project’s goal is to bring people in a community together with pride and happiness through art, JR is well on his way to achieving it.
If you’ve ever been driving down the BQE and caught a glimpse of something that made you think “WHAT THE %$#@?” chances are you just had an encounter with Dan Witz’s latest series. Now, just in time for Halloween, Dan has released a video tracking the installation of his sometimes spooky, sometimes sexy pieces. Trick or Treat indeed!