Within a couple of days of appearing as part of pop singer Katy Perry’s concert at the 2015 Super Bowl half-time show, “Left Shark,” an errant dancer dressed in a cartoonish shark costume, appeared as a chalk drawing in the lobby of an advertising agency.
We recently spotted this truck painted with a graffiti art homage to Oscar the Grouch on West 47th Street in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood. The trash can-dwelling Oscar is one the iconic group of puppet characters from the long-running and popular children’s television series Sesame Street. Graffiti and street artists have often made made use of characters from pop culture, as in this example inspired by South Park.
This somewhat cryptic message on this billboard in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood would seem to be largely meaningless to most people who might see it. But for the 2,000 or so people who work at the global advertising agency Ogilvy (a.k.a., Ogilvy & Mather) and its worldwide headquarters, which occupies an entire building across the street form the billboard, the message is clearly aimed at them. The billboard is a click-baity type ad driving to a website for Intridea, a technology development company that’s pitching its services to major ad agencies.
These cats stencils can be found all over New York City, but we see a lot of them in the Hell’s Kitchen and Chelsea neighborhoods for some reason. Of greater significance is the “Army of One” graffiti, which is work and moniker of New York-based artist Jef Campion, a.k.a., JC2, who we heard sadly passed away last week. Campion was the artist responsible for some very powerful street art, especially an artwork that remixed that famous Diane Arbus photo of a boy holding a hand grenade. The artist Fumero, who was an occasional collaborator, has written a brief, moving piece about Campion.