Monthly Archives: January 2010

Grad Van

Colorful and well-executed “Grad” graffiti-art tag on an Econoline-type van parked on Prince Street, across from the Apple Store in SoHo, in downtown NYC. Super awesome and kind of rare these days.

UPDATE – There’s a South Park theme to the graffiti art on that van in Chinatown we posted about earlier this week. The designs of the letters in “GRAD” correspond to each of the four main characters from the show. Plus there’s a snow-and-trees strip behind the letters. We totally missed this and are a bit shocked since we’re big South Park fans. (Many thanks to the anonymous tipster — whoever you are — for pointing this out to us in the Comments section below!)

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Spray-Can Man

Classic Shepard Fairey street art on Wooster St. in SoHo, New York City. The anthropomorphic spray can in this wheat-paste poster is holding a picture of the iconic, high-contrast image of Andre the Giant, which Fairey made famous and in turn made him famous — it was the artist’s launch pad to global underground fame.

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Banksy Movie Premieres at Sundance

Last weekend the new Banksy documentary film Exit Through the Gift Shop had its premiere screening at the Sundance Film Festival. The film features Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Invader and a host of others involved in the global street-art scene. The movie was inspired by — and is in part focused on — attempts by a French filmmaker to hunt down the mysterious British artist and make a documentary about him. Check out the quasi-trailer below.

Sneaker

Left-foot high-stop sneaker wheat-paste poster with blinding Day-Glo yellow-green color background, Wooster Street, SoHo, in downtown New York City. There’s a lot of excellent street art on the west side of the block south of Grand Street. Notable nearby landmarks of sorts are Deitch Projects art gallery and annex and Lucky Strike restaurant.

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Born to Run, Style to Burn

Haculla wheat-paste street art on Wooster Street in SoHo, in downtown New York City. This artwork riffs on iconic imagery from the cover art of a 1980’s Bruce Springsteen album and single, “Born in the U.S.A.” The phrase “Born to Run” references the name of saxophone-infused pop-rock classic hit by “the Boss” from another album a decade earlier.

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Batman and Legos

Awesome street art painting on a store-front roller shutter near the Landmark Sunshine Cinema on E. Houston St. in New York City. The artwork features images of comic-book and film superhero Batman and a cartoony character that looks like a mouse in bondage suit, a la the Gimp in Pulp Fiction. “Help?” calls out underneath. A close inspection of the work reveals that the artwork is composed of colorful photographic images of branded Lego bricks. An even closer look and the viewer can find specific references to iconic works of art by artist Jeff Koons and Norwegian painter Edvard Munch ( “The Scream“) — look carefully at the ears and eyes of the mousey gimp.

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Sociability

Here’s a wonderful, fresh wheat-paste street-art poster by A.S.V.P. in downtown New York City. We’ve been really digging A.S.V.P.’s graphic aesthetic. They’ve been increasingly prolific in recent months around lower Manhattan.

This paste-up is in SoHo, on Broome St. near the Capital One bank on Lafayette St. This spot is a frequent canvas for artists. Bast has often put up artwork in this space, which, incidentally, is on the block where the late Australian actor Heath Ledger lived and passed away.

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I Heart Elio Varuna

On the way home from dinner at Brinkley’s in SoHo tonight, we discovered some new wheat-paste artwork as we walked east along Broome Street back to Global Graphica HQ in the southwest LES (a.k.a, Northeast Chinatown or Bel-Del, for “Below Delancey”).

This is a route we use daily so we often notice new street art along this path when the work is still relatively fresh. The “I heart EV” posters we found tonight are by Italian artist Elio Varuna and self-celebrate his surreal, flat, graphical imagery. It also riffs on the iconic “I love NY” by legendary graphic designer Milton Glazer.

These Varuna paste-ups are on that cobblestone segment of Broome St. between the Bowery lamp-shop district and Christie. The work partially covers some recent black-and-white photographic wheat-paste street art, which we posted about earlier in the week.

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Grand Obey

A big, meaty, classic “Obey” / “Giant Has a Posse” wheat-paste street-art poster by artist-designer and all-around bona fide visual superstar Shepard Fairey. This one is on Grand Street between Ludlow and Orchard streets on Lower East Side of New York City. As ubiquitous and played-out as the iconic Obey image is, this one is unique insofar it’s a half-crop of the original image, as the paste-up is cropped at the corner-edge of the wood-board hoarding fence.

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Terry Richardson

Photographer Terry Richardson has recently started a new Tumblr photo blog called Terry’s Diary, and it’s fuckin’ awesome. Richardson is a fixture in downtown New York City, where he lives. We often see him at cafes and restaurants or just walking around in Nolita, stomping down down the Bowery, or in the Lower East Side and SoHo. We first became familiar with his photography back in 2001 in magazines like Vice. His photo shoots are notoriously naughty, and he’s always attending events and parties and often snapped at the side of celebrities and models.

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BNE on Tokyo Signage

The global sticker phenom that is BNE is ubiquitous in the hipster hoods of the Japanese capital. Here’s an amusing example of his stickie tag on an old-school pubic-safety sign. Love it.

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Brown & Pink

Wheat-paste street art in Japan: This rabbit-like creature character can be found everywhere in Shibuya, Harajuku and Naka-Meguro, in Tokyo. Usually, these are bright yellow, but this one caught our eye with its nicely paired hues of brown and pink.

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Roberto Bolano

Speaking of Barcelona, here’ an awesome Catalan street art image posted by Gsz on Flickr. The stencil is of the late Chilean writer and poet Roberto Bolano, who made Catalonia his home and the setting for many scenes in his stories, notably in the much-acclaimed and brilliant novel “The Savage Detectives.” This book and another massive work titled “2666” were published post-humously. The author died in 2003.

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Attribution:

Best Cities for Street Art in the World

Looking back at the last year and at our list of remaindered links, we stumbled across this street-art feature by Travel + Leisure magazine. The brief article is accompanied by a slide show called Best Cities for Street Art and it lists LA, Berlin, Sao Paulo, Melbourne, Paris, Buenos Aries, Bethlehem (West Bank, Israel), and, of course, New York. Actually NYC is listed twice — both Manhattan and Brooklyn are listed separately. Failing to include Barcelona is a bit of a scandal, but otherwise it’s a pretty good summary.

Reykjavik Jesus

Graffiti and street art painting of Jesus Christ on an underground parking garage wall in Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland. The city is small but has a rich cultural scene. We’ll definitely be going back again some day.

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“Stencialist”

The “Stencialist” is a clever portmanteau of stencil and specialist. Here we see the stencialist stencil-paste-up mash-up in Harajuku, the trendy neighborhood in Tokyo, Japan.

The face of the mustached dude in the stencil looks a lot like Roman Milisic, one of the guys from the House of Diehl fashion team who do those brilliant Style Wars events. (Full disclosure: We once worked with Roman and HoD a long time ago — and they’re awesome!)

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