Tag Archives: street art

Banksy Unofficially Collaborates With Basquiat Outside the Barbican 

Just days before the opening of the first large-scale UK exhibition of artist Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work at the Barbican, Banksy stopped by in the night to put up two new murals. The first, which he refers to as a “portrait of Basquiat being welcomed by the Metropolitan Police,” depicts a figure isolated from Basquiat’s famous 1982 painting, Boy and Dog in a Johnnypump, being frisked by two police officers as a dog watches nearby. The second shows a line of customers queuing for a ride aboard a ferris wheel of Basquiat’s iconic crowns drawn in oil pastel.

Basquiat rose to fame in the late 1970s on the streets of New York as half of the graffiti duo SAMO©. Banksy’s new pieces seem to simultaneously reference the prevalence of racial profiling in targeted stop-and-frisk procedures (Basquiat sometimes referenced police brutality in his own work), while also coyly challenging the Barbican’s strict graffiti removal policy. Basquiat: Boom for Real opens September 21, 2017. (via Arrested Motion)

Photo © Patrick Nguyen, courtesy Arrested Motion.

Photo © Patrick Nguyen, courtesy Arrested Motion.

Photo © Patrick Nguyen, courtesy Arrested Motion.

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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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Michael Pederson’s Lighthearted Street Art is Hidden in Plain Sight 

Using the nom de guerre Miguel Marquez Outside, Michael Pederson (previously here and here) tucks art installations in unexpected locations around Sydney. The artist’s plaques, signs, and miniature architecture tend to center around ideas of escape, isolation, and our relationship to social norms. But he approaches these heavy subjects with a a sense of humor and brings a lighthearted pseudohistory to various structures and spaces. And if Pederson’s shovel piece, shown below, has you wondering, you can use this site to find out what location is on the opposite side of the world from you. See more of the artist’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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Crystalline Artworks Grow from Cracks in Urban Walls by Paige Smith 

Artist Paige Smith A.K.A. A Common Name (previously here and here) has been filling the gaps, cracks, and corners of LA with hand folded paper crystals since 2012. Her Urban Geodes are painted in bright purple, pink, and other jewel tones. They are most commonly inserted into areas that are crumbling or could use a bit more care, allowing Smith to patch holes with art instead of a monotone spackle.

“Geodes are formations made and found in nature and my process of using manmade materials and placing them in major cities concurrently signals the tension between nature and industry and celebrates the beauty of urban space,” says Smith in an artist statement about the project. “My work is infused with a magical realism that encourages us to pause, to discover, to be present and to find beauty in the mundane.”

Similar to the Atlanta-based project Tiny Doors ATL, each of Smith’s installations are mapped on her website for easy finding. In addition to LA, Smith has also installed works in Philadelphia, San Francisco, Dubai, Madrid, Bali, and Istanbul. You can see more of her crystalline interventions on her Instagram.

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Miniature Installations of Decorative Doors Hidden in Plain Sight on the Streets of Atlanta 

Tucked under tunnels and nestled in public parks are several miniature doors, tiny installations built with stoops, welcome mats, and even tinier dog doors. The Atlanta-based works are part of artist Karen Anderson’s Tiny Doors ATL, an art project that aims to bring a bit of curiosity and wonder to the city’s inhabitants.

The project began in the summer of 2014, and since its launch has installed 12 six-inch doors throughout Atlanta. To keep with Tiny Doors ATL’s mission of being dedicated to free and accessible art, a digital map found on the project’s website serves as a guide to each door’s location.

For each new door Anderson hosts a miniature ribbon-cutting ceremony, a way to present the work to the public, while also connecting community members and fans of the miniature works. “I love the potential for art to build community,” Anderson told Instagram’s blog. “And I especially love how impactful that art can be when it’s free, public and accessible to everyone.”

To see more images of Tiny Doors ATL’s public installations, and keep up-to-date with upcoming openings, take a look at the group’s Instagram and Facebook. (via Instagram)

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