Tag Archives: politics

A Massive Mural by Ella & Pitr Depicts a Refugee Seeking Passage in France 

All images courtesy of Galerie Le Feuvre

French duo Ella & Pitr (previously) tackle the gravity of the global refugee crisis in their latest mural, Le Naufrage de Bienvenu/The Shipwreck of Bienvenu. The massive outdoor work reaches over 47 meters (154 feet), scaling the surface of Piney’s Dam in La Valla-En Gier, Rhone-Alpes, France.

Ella & Pitr frequently highlight neglected societal groups such as the elderly and homeless by placing them on highly visible urban canvases like snowy hillsides or old airport tarmacs. Their choice of a dam―a huge aquatic blockade―could be interpreted in reference to the swelling crisis of displaced people crossing the Mediterranean from Africa.

The artists and their team spent ten days suspended from the dam to complete the painting. You can follow more of Ella & Pitr’s work on Instagram.

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A Child Peers Over the US/Mexico Border Wall in a Giant New Photographic Work by JR 

French artist JR just unveiled a new work in progress at the US/Mexico border. The large photographic piece depicts a child peering over a border fence from the Mexican side, apparently in reference to Trump’s effort to rescind the DACA program which protects the children of undocumented immigrants from being deported. The artist is known for his towering photographic installations backed by scaffolding such as his pieces at the Louvre and the Rio Olympics.

JR will be in LA tonight at Blum & Poe for a discussion with curator Pedro Alonzo about “immigration in the artist’s practice.” Admission is free.

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Why Dozens of U.S. President Statues Sit Deteriorating in a Rural Virginia Field 

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All photos courtesy Patrick Joust.

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Somewhere in Virginia on the outskirts of private farmland sits the completely bizarre sight of nearly 40 giant U.S. president busts crumbling amongst the weeds. The mammoth heads—each estimated to weigh in excess of 7,000 pounds—were originally commissioned from Houston artist David Adickes as the centerpiece for Presidents Park, a ten-acre open-air museum with presidential sculptures and informational plaques located in Williamsburg, Virginia. First opened in 2004, the museum closed just 6 years later due to lack of attendance and most of the heads were eventually moved to a private farm where they sit today.

Photographer Patrick Joust recently made a trek to the presidential graveyard and shot these amazing photos of the eroding statues. The pieces are already faded and peeling from the elements and display a number of structural scars from repeated moves. The post-apocalyptic scene is reminiscent of the final moments of Planet of the Apes, or a modern take on the giant mysterious heads sprawled across Easter Island. The artist also sculpted a second set of presidential busts which were on display near Deadwood, South Dakota in an outdoor park setting operated by the artist himself. After closing the heads are now scattered—Abraham Lincoln’s bust now rests in front of the the Lincoln RV Park in Williston, North Dakota, and Theodore Roosevelt’s bust sits outside the Roosevelt Inn in Watford.

You can see more of Joust’s photography on Flickr and by following him on Facebook. (via The Virginian-Pilot, Smithsonian)

Update: This post has been updated to include the artist’s name as well as refer to a second set of presidential busts that were originally on display near Deadwood, South Dakota.

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Humorous and Political Street Art by Escif 

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On-Off (Katowice, Poland)

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On-Off (Katowice, Poland)

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Wikileaks (Valencia, Spain)

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Ne travaillez jamais (Besancon, France)

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Gentrification (Valencia, Spain)

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HELP (Praghe / Czech Republic)

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El rescate del euro (Niort, France)

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The Enlightened Vandalism (Vila-real, Spain)

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Lock (Montreal, Canada)

Spanish muralist and street artist Escif hails from Valencia, Spain but is actively globally with recent works popping up throughout Canada, Italy, and France. His use of subdued colors and simple lines helps the artist communicate his humorous and often direct commentary on capitalism, politics, the economy and other sensitive social issues. His work is much more about the message than style. In an interview with Unurth the artist shares:

Although sometimes is not easy to separate, I try to focus my work around concepts, not just shapes. I try to found my style like the consequences of my own ideas. I understand the painting as an exercise of reflection that can be shared with people. I’m not looking for decorative paintings, I try to wake up viewers minds.

Above is just a tiny fraction of Escif’s work over the last two years or so. You can see much more on his blog Street Against, on Facebook, or over on Flickr. (via arrested motion)

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Guy Denning Sketches Occupy Wall Street 

Artist Guy Denning is a self-taught English artist currently living in France. Mostly known for his gritty and brooding paintings, Denning has heartily embraced various internet outlets such as YouTube where he demonstrates how he paints, as well as a Facebook page where he posts a new drawing each day. Recently he posted a number of powerful images inspired by the Occupy Wall St. protests—capturing moments in Oakland, London, New York and elsewhere. His uncanny ability to illustrate powerful emotion in the simplest gestural sketches is incredible. Definitely worth subscribing. (via nick)

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Rosemary Laing’s Partially Constructed Building Embedded in the Australian Landscape 


(click images for detail)

First off: yes, these are photographs, no Photoshop at work here. This set of five panoramic photographs by artist Rosemary Laing shows the framework of an inverted, partially-completed building (though at times the photographs themselves are inverted) embedded in the Australian landscape around Cooma, New South Wales. The series, entitled Leak, examines ‘the encroachment of suburban development and the socio-economic and environmental pressures on the Australian landscape’ and each photograph is named after characters in Patrick White’s novel The Twyborn Affair (ie. Jim, or Prowse). Read more over on Art Blat. Aside from my love for skewed and dramatic perspectives in photography, these images are tickling many wonderful parts of my brain right now. I can only imagine the larger impact of seeing these as they’re meant to be seen as enormous prints, framed in white on a gallery wall.

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