It’s been just a little over a year since the world’s most high profile street artist, Banksy, manifested Better Out Than In, his October 2013 show in New York. His residency proved to be a runaway sensation, achieving an unprecedented media saturation by enthralling legions of increasingly rabid fans with a calculated, daily presentation of new pieces citywide. In all my years of documenting street art in New York, I’d never experienced anything quite like this residency. The month-long spectacle rolled out largely via social media, with seasoned documenters and newbie, self-proclaimed Banksy hunters alike sharing their experiences each day in a frenzied race against the clock and against the myriad forces that conspired to cut each piece’s longevity short. For those in the know, the #banksyny hashtag became the mainline for the daily Banksy infusion. And as documentation from each daily scene showed, many New Yorkers got hooked… on the art as well as the ensuing sideshow.
Via his well-respected Carnage imprint, fellow street photographer and long-time Banksy fan, Ray Mock, recently published Banksy in New York, an account of the residency from the point of view of a quintessential graffiti insider. I can’t recommend this volume enough.
And this past Friday, on the one year anniversary of the close of the residency, filmmaker Chris Mourkabel’s documentary Banksy Does New York was released on HBOGo, with the premiere, cable TV broadcast on HBO scheduled for Monday, November 17th at 9pm EST. The bulk of the footage for the film was crowd-sourced, allowing for multiple, unique perspectives on the residency as it unfolded. I’m honored to have been interviewed for the film alongside Jaime Rojo & Steve Harrington of Brooklyn Street Art, RJ Rushmore & Caroline Caldwell of Vandalog, Hrag Vartanian of Hyperallergic and others. You can watch a short trailer below:
I’m a big fan of Joe Iurato’s work not only for his crisp & clean stenciling abilities, but also because he understands the importance of good placement. His series of wooden cut-outs – see skater series below – are installed with great care and consideration for their context. More please, Joe.
[Joe Iurato for Bushwick Collective & Welling Court – all photo (c) Luna Park]
Despite the fact that their opening at Dallas Contemporary is a little over one week away, the street art duo Faile just put the finishing touches on their largest public mural to date. While Patrick Miller and Patrick McNeil designed the mural themselves, the majority of the painting duties were handed over to Colossal Media, the same paint wizards behind NYC murals by artists such as Barry McGee , Greg Lamarche, and Banksy.
The building itself – located on 44th Street near 8th Avenue – is significant for its historical roots as home to the Record Plant recording studios. Artists including Jimmi Hendrix (Electric Ladyland), Aerosmith (Get Your Wings, Toys in the Attic), and Cyndi Lauper (She’s so Unusual) recorded some of their greatest albums at this Hell’s Kitchen location, and John Lennon was recording “Walking on Thin Ice” at the Record Plant on the day that he was shot and killed.
The city of Vitry-sur-Seine lies within the southeastern suburbs of Paris. Historically, this commune has been home to a large, diverse immigrant population, a background that contributed to Vitry being on the forefront in the development of the French hip hop movement in the 80s. For some time now, the city has supported a cultural policy of bringing art to all, for example, opening it’s Musée d’Art Contemporain du Val-de-Marne in 2005. The city has actively embraced public arts programs, installing contemporary sculptures throughout public spaces as well as supporting large-scale mural projects. Thanks to initiatives by artists such as C215, Vitry’s walls bear the work of an international roster of street artists such as Nunca, Nychos, Roa and Ethos to name but a few. I spent an afternoon in Vitry earlier this summer and only caught a fraction of the many murals on display.
Missing artist attributions welcome in the comments.
Three years after he first painted at Welling Court, Polish stencil artist M-City returned to the quiet Queens neighborhood yesterday to paint another one of his signature, large-scale murals. Tirelessly working against the clock in a race against the setting winter sun, M-City signed off on his stenciled carousel at dusk, having taken roughly five hours to complete. Up next he paints a massive wall in the South Bronx – when it’s done, I promise you won’t be able to miss it.
With the completion of her intricate, stenciled mural titled Here’s Fun For Everyone, Japanese-born, Brooklyn-based artist Lady Aiko has the distinction of being the first female artist to paint the famed Bowery/Houston wall.
Click here to see previous iterations of this wall.
I couldn’t be happier that Stikman, one of my favorite street artists, will be opening a show of all-new work at Brooklyn’s Pandemic Gallery tomorrow night. Titled “20”, the show marks an astonishing twenty year career of installing his now iconic stikmen characters on the streets. His ability to reinvent the stikman figure in new mediums and willingness to experiment with different configurations is seemingly boundless. Because the pieces are never the same, they are a challenge to find – but fans of his work no doubt agree there is a special thrill to recognizing one of his pieces.
Of the show, Stikman writes, “To celebrate twenty years of playing in the street with sticks I have created a special battalion of twenty figures to send out into the world with the hope that the friends of stikman will take him along on new journeys to places he has not yet been. I have also created twenty works on paper to commemorate the paper element associated with stikman. Ten of these are PAINTBLAST, which is a form of automatic painting that occurs when I paint the wood figures.”
March 16-April 6, 2012
Opening: Friday, March 16, 7-11pm Pandemic Gallery
37 Broadway btwn Kent and Wythe
Brooklyn, NY 11211
L train to Bedford ave, J train to Marcy ave, or Q59 bus to Broadway/Wythe
As Luna mentioned in her post earlier today, we had a great time at Albany’s Living Walls festival this past weekend. Not only was it an opportunity to catch up with friends and to make the acquaintance of artists and other photographers from near and far, but we were also fortunate enough to meet and interact with many members of the communities that will be living with these walls for some time to come. Some were so enthusiastic that they hopped right into my pictures to model for me! And since no two shots are ever quite the same, here are my highlights from the weekend (See Luna’s here):