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The best NYC street art inspired by our surreal times

Howard Haile writes for Time Out

street artOne of the big questions surrounding the "New Normal" is how will it affect life as we know it in the long term. In what ways will it transform how we work, how we vote and how we entertain ourselves? Will going to the movies, seeing a musical or dining at your favorite boîte ever be the same?

And then there's the issue of art, which has already migrated to the web in the form of virtual tours and online viewings. But more important is how the content of art is going to change. Will the art world go back to business as usual, or will the current situation become a principal subject for artists and the curators and collectors who follow their lead?

In the gallery world, this has yet to happen in any concerted fashion, though there have been some efforts to address the crisis. Street art, on the other hand, seems to be making a more noticeable pivot towards responding to Covid-19 and its fallout. This may be due to the fact that street art is historically rooted in the idea of being a guerrilla activity, nimble in execution and subversive in content.

So it shouldn't be a surprise that here in New York, the city that gave birth to the graffiti movement, several examples of pandemic-related street art have been popping up around town. We picked out some especially eye-grabbing pieces, which you can check out here.


Show Support for the Museum of Graffiti

During these difficult pandemic times, there are many arts organizations and museums that are struggling to survive. One that is close to my heart if the Museum of Graffiti, located in the Wynwood section of Miami, Dedicated tot he art of Graf, this unique museum has a very interesting online store that is a perfect gift location. Think Mothers Day, Fathers Day, Birthday or just "I'm Thinking of You" day.

https://museumofgraffiti.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/MOG_ART_TALKS_MAY-29-50-25-1024x1024.png

The museum offers ongoing Live Arts talks on Instagram.

 


Around the World in Pandemic Street Art

Pandemic street artMessages of respect, hope, and frustration have appeared in our largely empty public spaces.


The Street Museum of Art

The street museum of artCheck out the Street Museum of Art which is an international celebration of graffiti and street art.

 

City streets have become gallery walls for this urban museum.
Admission is always free and the hours are limitless.
SMoA is the first public art project to adopt the guerrilla tactics of street art & graffiti culture in a program of illegally curated exhibitions.


GUERRILLA CURATING FOR A RADICAL ART FORM.


The Street Museum of Art (SMoA) is the defining museum in street art, graffiti and contemporary muralism. SMoA supports and promotes public work within its original context like no other museum can: bringing vital conversations about these artists and their work to the street for a new level of appreciation and awareness. SMoA celebrates its ephemeral ethos from paste up to decay. This international project champions all things local by highlighting the diverse artists, styles and techniques found in each city that's reached by our program of traveling, illegal exhibitions.

Founded in 2012 around the streets of Brooklyn, The Street Museum of Art’s guerrilla curating initiatives re-evaluate the current model for contemporary art museums by exploring the unique relationship these artists share with their urban environments.


Welcome the Museum of Graffiti in Miami!

This is one of the best reasons to go to Miami - the new Museum of Graffiti:

Museum of graffitiThe world's first museum exclusively dedicated to the evolution of the graffiti art form.

Throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s in large cities all over the United States, children invented a new art form that started with writing their names on walls in their neighborhoods. Local governments launched cleaning campaigns and mandated that young writers be arrested for their vandalism, but the movement could not be stopped. Unrelenting young people forged ahead at a feverish pace with creative innovations and inspired generations of new practitioners.

In no time, the wall writings quickly developed to become more elaborate and decorative. Taking on unique and distinguishable signifiers like arrows, crowns and other innovations through design and color, this became the blueprint for tags, throw-ups, masterpieces, and the elaborate works seen today.

Fifty years later, the Museum of Graffiti was formed to preserve graffiti’s history and celebrate its emergence in design, fashion, advertising, and galleries. The Museum experience includes an indoor exhibition space, eleven exterior murals, a fine art gallery, and a world-class gift shop stocked with limited edition merchandise and exclusive items from the world’s most talented graffiti artists.

 

11am ‒ 7pm
Closed Tuesdays

Hours subject to change for holidays and special events.

 

Adults: $16 + tax/fees
Children under 13: Free

 

 


Breaking News-- Appeal Upheld in 5Pointz Artist Lawsuit

Great news--

 

Appeals court backs $6.7M award to Queens' 5 Pointz artists

 

 

Twenty-one graffiti artists are due $6.7 million under a court judgment upheld Thursday against a developer who destroyed their works at the famed 5Pointz art mecca in Queens. The artists sued developer Gerald Wolkoff, taking their case to an unprecedented trial arguing their work at the old Long Island City factory was work of “recognized stature” protected by the federal Visual Artists Rights Act, a federal law that took effect in 1990.

 


Guerrilla Art Installation

Railroad-Eraser-Aaron-Asis-Queens-Decommisioned-Railroad-Corridor-NYC-005According to UntappedCities.com:

A recent guerrilla art installation in Queens is subtle, but raises important questions about the on-going cycle of building, abandonment, and redevelopment in the surrounding neighborhood and New York City as a whole. The piece by artist Aaron Asis, entitled Railroad Eraser, consists of painted white highlights along a decommissioned railroad corridor (hint: we have covered this location before on Untapped New York!). This temporary installation reminds us all of a familiar landscape but encourages us to appreciate the unique urban character hidden within our decommissioned landscapes, as places to encourage accidental discovery and share nuanced glimpses into our history — and as an alternative to large-scale erasure and redevelopment.

The title of the piece literally and figuratively challenges the ongoing erasure of the city’s developmental past and is intended to encourage an unrestricted interaction with art (and our city) that is not rooted in superficial nostalgia. The white color, also painted on the tracks themselves, is deliberate to provide clean contrast to the aesthetic of decommissioned infrastructure. But if one passes by the work serendipitously, it may not immediately alert them to the intervention. But seen in contrast to the paired track next to it, some questions might be raised.

Asis tells us that he is deliberately keeping the location unnamed, but it is on a section of rail that was commissioned earlier this decade (there is active rail line adjacent to this specific bridge, but the artwork is along the decommissioned stretch). Curious folks can certainly determine its location by these photographs. Workers who were there during Asis’ installation looked at him curiously but allowed him to continue. He tells us, “There is spirit which is being lost in our city and Railroad Eraser challenges any aspirations for the future that require us to circumvent the past or present…and questions any motivations to normalize our experiences in a city that prides itself on the opposite”

Next, check out other site-specific works by Aaron Asis in New York City.


Gripes - The Sequin Wall at Hudson Yards

Touted as a street art instagrammable wall in the Dubai-on-the-Hudson Hudson Yards Mall, this pathetic effort at cred leaves me cold. First they gentrify a neighborhood and chase all of the street artists out and then they construct a do-it-yourself "graf-wall" nicely situated among luxury retailers. Oh really?

Sequin wall

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my opinion, a better, more authentic wall would be similar to the gum wall in Seattle. Now that is art!

IMG_1937

 


Get to the Bronx on August 10th

BXART FACTORY INVITES THE COMMUNITY TO PARTY AND PAINT FOR PEACE
AT THEIR 1ST BRONX BLOCK PARTY
This Summer Visual Artist Franck de las Mercedes Became the
Recipient of BxArts Factory's Artistic Residency
 
 
 
New York, August 2019 -- BxArts Factory is a grassroots, non-profit organization connecting Bronx-based creatives and community through the arts. The Factory sponsors art exhibitions, workshops and educational programs in the Bronx and collaborates with artists, other organizations and local businesses to strengthen ties to the community and increase community engagement with the arts.
 
Founded in 2014 by Bronx local artist Laura Alvarez, community activist Twahira Khan, Alexis Mendoza - founder of Alexis Mendoza Curatorial Projects, and community organizer and educator Yolanda L. Rodriguez; BxArts is launching it's first annual Block Party outside of their new space in the Melrose community of the Bronx. On Saturday, August 10th, from 3-6pm, this event celebrates the success of the organization as a Bronx-based community creative resource and share plans for the future at their newly acquired space.

Joining the celebration will be BxArts Factory current resident artist, Franck de las Mercedes, internationally recognized for creating  conceptual works and colorful abstractions. Franck will be leading a Peace Boxes painting workshop with block party guests of all ages. Since 2006 The Priority Boxes art project has achieved international acclaim as a public project that promotes peace through participatory art while seeking to initiate dialogue on peace, challenge people to reconsider their ability to influence change and question the fragility, value and priority given to those concepts. Each box is both a canvas for a unique abstract painting and a platform for communication through art.

"I am honored to be collaborating with the community and to be the recipient of this Artistic Residency with BxArts Factory. I look forward to the next 3 months creating a community-based body of work and the exhibit at the end of the residency program. I'm also happy to see the comeback of the Peace Boxes, by way of workshops. This is already an enriching experience and it is my wish that the community will also be enriched by my participation." says FdlM

This event is free to the public. BxArts Factory is inviting everyone to come take over the block with family and friends and enjoy a day of music, art, games, poetry and performances for the whole family to enjoy.


WHAT:   BxArts Factory Block Party
WHEN:  Saturday, August 10th, 3 to 6 p.m.
WHERE: BxArts Factory
             240 East, 153rd Street
             Bronx, NY 10451
More info: http://www.bxartsfactory.org/
 
 
HI RES IMAGES (Courtesy FdlM Studio)

Invite:
https://1drv.ms/u/s!AtTT_1i9o6gTifQlT2_5h5PnqIWTDQ?e=BXf3pL
 
Artwork:
https://1drv.ms/u/s!AtTT_1i9o6gTiaYuuKxEZDtnJy489g?e=BWGLZQ

ABOUT FDLM:
Franck de las Mercedes is an artist living and working in Washington
Heights, New York City. In 2006, de las Mercedes achieved international acclaim with his conceptual art project “The Priority Boxes" or Peace Boxes; conceived as a way to
promote peace and  bring contemporary art to a broader audience.  FdlM
is the recipient of an  “Outstanding Latino” award, the “Hearing Our Voices” award and is profiled in the book titled “Learning from Latino Role Models: Inspire Students through Biographies, Instructional Activities, and Creative Assignments” by David Campos (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers). Named one of Complex magazine’s “15 Artists About to Dominate 2015”, Franck has participated in numerous national
and international exhibits including The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt New York, The NY Museum of Modern Art’s “Abstract Currents”, Sing for Hope Pianos 2017, BKLYN Designs, Naples Museum of Art, Folklore Museum of Tripotamos Greece, The National of Ireland, Ireland and The French Institute Alliance Française. His art is part of private and public collections around the world, including a portrait of Francisco de
Quevedo which was acquired by Fundación Francisco de Quevedo. More info: fdlmstudio.com