I spent the weekend in the Detroit area, where I helped my sister shop for bridesmaid dresses, went to a Tigers game with 14 other people (the Tigers won, of course, despite end-of-the-world thunderstorms) and hung out in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti with my friend Jon. Ann Arbor, it turns out, has a fantastic assortment of charming and quirky graffiti. Pictured here: a quote from Dr. Seuss, a depiction of Sonic the Hedgehog and a crosswalk sign with wings.
I took this photo in Bed-Stuy last weekend, and I kind of love the juxtaposition of all the text: “CARS KILL,” “You Go Girl” and “Liquor Store.” It could be read as a feminist anti-drunk-driving ad.
In honor of certain irritating events that have captured the world’s attention, I give you a funny piece of graffiti I found on the Michigan State campus. This, appropriately, was located on large columns that list the names of major donors to the university.
I must offer the disclaimer, however, that it’s pretty immature to put graffiti on columns that honor people who have donated to education. Still, it’s a bit funny, especially since the columns are really ugly.
This piece of street art, thought to be by artist Kelly Goeller, was found on Mercer Street in Manhattan. I haven’t seen it in person, but it would be so fun to stumble across this as you’re walking down the street. It would be almost as if Super Mario Bros were invading your neighborhood.(Image from Unurth.)
I spotted this a few weeks ago in the East Village and thought it was pretty interesting — it’s a Shepard Fairey poster on a construction dumpster on East 5th Street. This same piece was featured as part of the artist’s big mural at Bowery and Houston a while ago.
It was right next to a mural by Fairey (see left), which stands about four stories tall on the wall of a building at East 5th and Bowery, right next to the Cooper Square Hotel. It makes me wonder if it’s Shepard Fairey’s personal dumpster or if some fan just slapped it on there. I hope it’s the latter; nothing says “You’ve made it big” more than a dumpster defaced with your artwork.
This is a great video showing graffiti artists Everfresh and Miso painting at the National gallery in Melbourne. I love to see the process and the steps it takes to make a great piece of graffiti.
I found out about this from a Facebook friend, Jesse, who posted a link to Boooooooom, a pretty great site I hadn’t seen before.
I don’t usually post images of graffiti from places other than New York, but I saw this little guy on Wooster Collective and it made me giggle. I think every fire hydrant should be manufactured with a happy little face like this.
Anonymous and amazing street artist Banksy, probably best known for the film Exit Through the Gift Shop and his disturbing introduction to The Simpsons, came into the news recently when an eBay seller tried to auction off his identity for almost a million dollars. The bidding was taken down today, which probably means it was a hoax, but it stirred up a lot of commentary among fans.
The Onion had a hilarious article outing grandmother Rose Biggin as the real Banksy.
“Those drawings? Oh, yes, those are mine,” said the diminutive octogenarian, who admitted to scaling buildings and climbing fences in order to put up life-sized stenciled images that satirize modern society’s mores and its inherent political power structures. “It sure does help to pass the time.”
Well, it certainly didn’t take taggers long to deface the Kenny Scharf mural at the corner of Houston and Bowery. While I found the mural creepy and manic, I think it’s awful to see how quickly people rushed to ruin something that obviously took a lot of time and creativity.
Unfortunately, it’s par for the course for this particular location. The Shepard Fairey mural faced a similar fate, and others have also been tagged within days of being unveiled. I understand that part of the risk of graffiti and street art in general is being painted over or tagged, but this still pisses me off.
I’m especially irritated when a colorful, thought-provoking work is tagged with nothing but huge sloppy gray initials. If you’re going to mess with someone’s art, at least make it good. This is not only the act of a jerk, it’s the act of a really lazy jerk who doesn’t know how to properly wield a can of spray paint.
Happy Saturday, all! I am planning to spend the morning organizing my business paperwork and cleaning the apartment. I’m trying to get all the productive junk out of the way so I can spend tonight and tomorrow relaxing and having fun.(I photographed this fun graffiti last week in Bushwick — it was around the corner from this mural.)
I’m always excited when I see a new mural on the iconic wall at the corner of Houston and Bowery. When I first moved to New York, the giant wall was covered with a lively Keith Haring tribute. After a long time, the Haring mural was repainted and a new one — my favorite so far — by graffiti-artist brothers Os Gêmeos took its place. (If you have been reading this blog for any time, you know how much I adore them.) This was then whitewashed and replaced with a Shepard Fairey mural (he of the OBEY cult following and the famous Obama “Hope” poster), which was quickly defaced by vandals.
The newest installation on this wall is a mural by Kenny Scharf, and while it’s well done and colorful, it’s disturbing to me in an evil-clown-on-acid sort of way. The smiling creatures remind me of manic bacteria and look like something you’d see in a feverish nightmare. While I appreciate the technique and use of color, coming across it in the middle of the night was a frightening occurrence.
Happy New Year! This afternoon, the lovely Laura hosted a New Year’s brunch, where we ate incredible cupcakes and watched the horrific Michigan State bowl game. (Did I use enough adjectives for you?) As I was getting off the train, I noticed this mural featuring two deer, an owl, and a pile of skulls. Somehow, all of these elements combine to be totally charming instead of menacing.
A few weeks ago, I went with my roommates to Coney Island, where we ate Nathans hot dogs and walked the boardwalk. I begged the girls to ride the famous Cyclone or the Wonder Wheel, but they weren’t interested.
I was excited, however, to see a giant Os Gêmeos mural right outside the Coney Island subway stop. I’ve always loved their work, which was featured for a while at the corner of Houston and Bowery, so it was exciting to see another large-scale mural in New York.
Os Gêmeos is comprised of two identical twin brothers from Brazil. Their work is sometimes as simple as tags and as complicated as entire murals, like the commissioned one on Bowery.
Although the paint is peeling a bit and the colors might have faded, the Coney Island mural is definitely one of my favorites I’ve seen from these artists.
Here are a few random acts of graffiti that I spotted around New York a few months ago. I think graffiti, even when it’s not professional or really artistic, is just so bright and fun. (The first image is a mural by graffiti artists Os Gêmeos, and although it is technically not “graffiti,” it is street art.)
There are a lot of stupid things that I insist my friends see when they visit the city. I tend to avoid the traditional things (for example, I’ve still never been to the top of the Empire State Building), but there are certain little sights that I think are too much fun to miss.
For example, NYC’s New Museum has this sign on the front of the building:
Rainbow-colored neon sign reads: Hell, Yes!
Fun, right? But the best part is on the base of a stoplight directly across the street from the museum, where you can find this little piece of cheeky graffiti:
It’s partially covered with a sticker, but the stencil reads: Hell, No!
The entire time I’ve lived in New York, there’s been a dancing-people mural at the corner of Houston and Bowery to commemorate Keith Haring (probably best known for his “Crack is Wack” mural).
Recently, it was painted over. I don’t deal well with change, and passing it was a bit of a shock to me at first. Then I realized that the new mural is 100 times cooler, and now I make a point to walk by it whenever I’m downtown. Seriously — it’s amazing.
The mural was painted by Brazilian graffiti artists Os Gêmeos, and it truly gives merit to the concept of street art as a true art form. Look at the detail and colors. I want to marry one of these guys just so they’ll do a mural like this on my wall.
This reminds me — I have yet to finish my New Year’s resolution to tag a building. I still have a month!
Os Gêmeos mural
Even though I don’t look it, I’m very excited that my dress sort of matches.
Another detail shot