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Is Street Art Losing Its Edge? Video on PBS

This is a subject that I have pondered for a while - what happens when street art goes mainstream? When it becomes acceptable and even encouraged? When the galleries and auction houses start pricing it? Does it lose its edge?

Some past posts:


The Big Boo Hoo on Street Art

The Beginning of the End of Street Art

NY Post - When Museums Start hailing Graffiti

I have been following street art for years. I have photos from Florence Italy in 1974 of graffiti (for that is what it was called in those days). The evolution of graffiti into street art has been gradual and exciting. And now, especially with Banksy's NYC installation month completed, street art is now in the forefront of the public's affection with art.

Is this good? I am ambivalent. On the one hand I am thrilled that street artists are getting the recognition they deserve. On the other hand I am concerned that street art will lose its edge, which is what makes it so exciting and attractive to me. Here is a video of a short special recently on PBS highlighting Banksy and interviewing Steven Harrington of the always great Brooklyn Street Art blog.


Street Art That Blends into Its Environment

Wheatpaste-street-art-2A French street artist by the name of Levalet has been creating a series of funny scenes that seem to interact with their environment using nothing more than paper cut-outs and wheatpaste.

The artwork appears lifelike in many scenes such as a woman emerging from a door and a man closing the shutter of his shops for the day. They were created in black and white, but if given an element of color, it wouldn’t be surprising if many people were fooled into thinking they were real.

Levalet’s final touch is often a 3D object such as an umbrella, this completes the illusions and potentially acts as a way to draw in passersby who may not have noticed the 2D art in the first place.

Click through the gallery below to see more of the eye-catching pieces.


Shepard Fairey Mural in Soho NYC

2fairey0410 Street artist Shepard  Fairely was asked to create a mural on the wall in NYC's Houston Street corridor near Braodway. He worked on it for days and it was beautiful! No sooner was Shepard Fairey's mural on Houston Street unveiled than it was labeled as illegal and was threatened to be removed. I wonder when the public will realize that street art is art and has it value and merits just like any other art form.

As of two days ago it was still there and looks great!

AP Says Shepard Fairey's Obama is Copyright Infringement

Well here is an interesting twist to the now very famous and revered Obama portrait by Shepard Fairey.
Associated Press says that Fairey infringed on their copyright - his street art inspired portrait of the President was lifted from an AP photo of Obama. What do you think?
A poster of President Barack Obama, right, by artist Shepard Fairey is shown for comparison with this April 27, 2006 file photo of then-Sen. Barack Obama (on the left) by Associated Press photographer Manny Garcia at the National Press Club in Washington.
Fairey has acknowledged, the poster is based on the AP photograph. (AP Photo/Manny Garcia/ Shepard Fairey)

Judith Supine

One of my favorite street artists is Judith Supine whose beautiful, disturbing and political wheatpaste collages enhanced downtown Manhattan for a couple of years. He is a man of mystery but has graciously posted a video of his artistic process on YouTube. Here is the link. Enjoy!

He has since disappeared and is greatly missed. Where are you, Judith Supine?