murals

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Art Photography

JR Reproduces Images of More Than 1,000 NYC Residents in Massive New Mural

February 4, 2020

Grace Ebert

“The Chronicles of New York City” (2020). Photos by Marc Azoulay. All images © JR-ART.net, shared with permission

French artist JR (previously) is back in New York, transforming pockets of the city with his latest work. Installed on stacked shipping containers, “The Chronicles of New York City” is a compilation of images depicting more than 1,000 New York residents, who the artist photographed and reproduced for the large-scale work. Created in Williamsburg’s Domino Park, the black-and-white mural is JR’s biggest public project to date in the city. It overlooks the East River and features people living in all five boroughs gathered in a public space that mimics the newly built park.

Since opening his exhibition “JR: Chronicles” in October of 2019, the artist has been transforming areas throughout the city, like a space at the Kings Theatre in Flatbush and the Brooklyn Academy of Global Finance in Bedford Stuyvesant. “The Chronicles of New York City” is the centerpiece of the exhibition, which is on view through May 3, 2020, at Brooklyn Museum, and is accompanied by audio recordings of those portrayed in the monochromatic mural. The public installation was a collaboration with architectural firm LOT-EK, which is known for its sustainable design and helped in creating the site.

“Working at the intersections of photography, social engagement, and street art, JR collaborates with communities by taking individual portraits, reproducing them at a monumental scale, and wheat pasting them—sometimes illegally—in nearby public spaces,” says a statement about the exhibition.  See where JR’s work pops up next by following him on Instagram and peek in his shop to check out what’s available for purchase.

 

 

 



Art

Illustrative Murals in Shades of Grey by Paola Delfín Characterize Human Bonds

January 29, 2020

Grace Ebert

“Èèn” (2019), for The Crystal Ship, Oostende, België. Photo by Arne Deboosere. All images © Paola Delfín, shared with permission

Paola Delfín’s monochromatic murals found in Cancun, St. Petersburg, and cities worldwide all share a message of unity and community. The Mexico-based artist often creates impeccably detailed and stylized profile views, which show her subjects looking down or into the distance, joined by plants, grasses, and flowers of the local environment.

Her lifelike works center on ideas of women’s strength and their ability to build community, in addition to the ways families are bound together and remember their ancestors⁠—although Delfín tells Colossal she has a more personal connection to the Cancun mural, which depicts a couple staring forward as they cradle a small boat.

My family, uncle and aunt, are part of (the) pioneers. They moved to this city almost 40 years ago and watched it grow. They started a school. My uncle worked on a ship for many years. Now the younger generations are trying to bring more culture since this city transformed into a tourist paradise, and sometimes we forget this was the place where centuries ago the great Mayan culture (rose).

The artist finds murals challenging because of her desire to “leave something meaningful” for those who pass by her work. Before she begins creating in any location, she studies the history and culture of the neighborhood she’s working in and talks to its residents to learn their stories. For “Familia/Suku,” the artist spoke with Tampere residents to understand how immigrants and natives across generations form a community in the Finnish city. In the horizontal piece, Suham, an Iranian expat, leans toward elderly Maya, who has lived in the country for 50 years, while Suham’s daughter Sofia stands in front of them.

Head to Delfín’s Instagram for more of her large- and small-scale projects, and check out Street Prints to see her work in progress.

“La emperatriz“ for Shine Festival in St. Petersburg, Florida. Photo by Michelle Tannu

“Familia/Suku” (2019), for Upeart Festival, Tampere, Finland

“Kotahi/Uno,” Whangarei , New Zealand. Photo by Street Prints

2019, for Proyecto Panorama, Cancun, Mexico. Photo by Gino Caballero

2019, Mexicalli, Mexico

“Èèn” (2019), for The Crystal Ship, Oostende, België. Photo by Arne Deboosere

(2019), Resita, Romania. Photo by Sergio Morariu

“Juntos” (2019), Paulino Navarro, Mexico City. Photo by Edgar Olguin

 

 



Art

Floating Worlds Drift By in Murals by Cinta Vidal

January 16, 2020

Grace Ebert

In Hong Kong. All images © Cinta Vidal, shared with permission

For Cinta Vidal, everything depends on how you look at it. The Barcelona-based artist is known for her gravity-defying projects that manipulate architecture and household objects to create inverted environments dissimilar to daily life. Like her smaller-scale inverted works, Vidal’s murals are concerned with human subjectivity and feature both peculiarly arranged architecture and objects like books, chairs, and even a canoe floating through the air. They cover walls throughout Los Angeles, Hong Kong, and Barcelona, among other cities around the world.

Whether it be a young girl seated on an oversized globe or a man peering over a balcony that’s tipped at a 90 degree angle, the works consider how perspectives are informed by a subject’s position.

Everyone has their own view on the world, and my work is my way of expressing this idea: it’s impossible to view something from every perspective at the same time. There’s always a choice, a perception. In my work there also lies a desire to take things out of context, releasing them into the air and, by doing so, giving them new value.

The artist tells Colossal that once she chooses a location to paint a mural, she studies the areas nearby. Vidal intends each project to become part of the existing environment, often prompting her utilize the color already on the building’s surface as her background. “Paint(ing) a mural is about interact(ing) with the wall and everything that surrounds it,” she writes. To get the latest on the artist’s creations, follow her on Instagram.

International University Barcelona.

“Refuge”

At the Honolulu Museum of Art

At a public library in Cardedeu

“Floating Napa” in Napa Valley, California

In Calgary

“Backstage” in Long Beach

“Viewpoints” for Thinkspace in Los Angeles

 

 



Art

New Book Collects ROA’s Black-and-White Creatures in Photographs from Around the World

December 11, 2019

Grace Ebert

All photographs © ROA, shared with permission. Atlanta, Georgia, United States

Those unable to experience the black-and-white murals of Belgian artist ROA (previously) in person can admire photographs of his works in the recently published Codex. Released by Lannoo Publishers, the 352-page book contains four chapters centered on Eurasia, Africa, America, and Oceania, regions where ROA’s depictions of local animals blanket building walls. The photographs portray a snake wound around itself, six different species perched on vertical ledges, and an alligator on its back with its tail scaling a fire escape.

ROA works directly on the building, foregoing sketches and projections, and uses the architecture to inform the ways he paints birds, rodents, and other native creatures. Captivated by anatomy, the artist attempts to animate his paintings, giving energy and life to species often disregarded by humans. “Exploration of nature, more specifically of the animal world, can lead to increased empathy,” he says. “It teaches you something substantial about how one should live a good life.” The monochromatic murals’ scale often makes animals larger than their real-life bodies, securing and emboldening their monumental presence.

Codex, which is available now, also incorporates writing from RJ Rushmore, Lucy R. Lippard, Johan Braeckman, Gwenny Cooman, Robert R. Williams, and Kathy De Nève.

Johannesburg, South Africa

Puerto Rico

Vardø, Norway

São Paulo, Brazil

Perth, Australia

Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

 

 



Art

Towering Holographic Dinosaurs Stalk the Streets of Paris in Projections by Julien Nonnon

December 5, 2019

Grace Ebert

All photographs (c) Julien Nonnon, shared with permission

A T-Rex is inhabiting the streets of Paris. Artist Julien Nonnon has given life to extinct creatures in his latest work, “Prehistoric Safari,” by using video-mapping technology to project images of the dinosaurs in the Jardin d’Acclimatation, a long-established Parisian amusement park. Nonnon says the digital art form, which is at the intersection of photography, video, architecture and scenography, has allowed him to produce 17 3D-projections of species that occupied the Cretaceous period. A T-Rex flaunting its yellow eyes and a triceratops brandishing green horns appear at nightfall on building sides in holographic form.

The artist tells Colossal that this project is centered on pop culture and “was inspired by the adventure books of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Jules Verne and Michael Crichton, as well as Steven Spielberg’s movies.” In addition to the 3D-projections, Nonnon also directed a mini film titled “Dino Escape,” which depicts a dinosaur invasion of Paris’s streets and includes an interactive quest for audience members to retrieve a T-Rex egg and bring it to present day.

The show runs through January 5. Find more of Nonnon’s work on Instagram. (via Journal du Design)

 

 



Art

Muralist Elian Chali Envelopes Building Facades in Enormous Abstract Fields of Color

November 5, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Argentinian artist Elian Chali, who goes by just his first name professionally, creates vibrant murals that balance a simple aesthetic with carefully calculated designs. Elian often incorporates anamorphic shapes into his murals, placing squiggles and squares at the corners of buildings, creating the illusion of floating patterns. Clean lines and flat color fields almost seem to be rendered digitally rather than laboriously hand-painted across hundreds or even thousands of square feet. In addition to his mural projects, the self-taught artist creates smaller gallery-ready paintings and prints, and also works as a freelance curator. Follow along with Elian’s latest projects on Instagram. (via Street Art News)

 

 



Art History

A 21 Foot-Long Painting of The Last Supper by 16th Century Nun and Artist Plautilla Nelli Has Just Been Painstakingly Restored

October 24, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

In the 1500’s self-taught artist and nun Plautilla Nelli created a life-size mural of Jesus and the twelve apostles at the Last Supper. Spanning 21 feet feet, the vibrantly colored painting includes carefully rendered details including wine chalices, salt cellars, wood panelling, and a rhythmically creased tablecloth. In addition to the inanimate objects depicted, Nelli demonstrated impressive facility with human anatomy in her renderings of the religious figures—at the time, women were barred from studying the field of anatomy.

Nelli’s masterpiece stayed for two centuries at her convent, Santa Caterina, and then changed locations a few times before being unstretched, rolled, and put in storage about a hundred years ago. After an initial restoration and then additional damage due to flooding in the 1960’s, The Last Supper has been undergoing restoration for the past four years. Brought back to life by an all-female team of curators, restorers, and scientists at Advancing Women Artists, it is now on permanent display at the Santa Maria Novella Museum in Florence, Italy. (via artnet, Smithsonian Magazine)

 

 

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