As you walk up the stairs to the second floor of LBMA (@lbmaorg) to continue your tour of “Vitality and Verve: Transforming the Urban Landscape“, the first piece you will encounter is an untitled installation by Meggs (@houseofmeggs) of a familiar gun range target character bursting out the wall as if he had just shot a bullet through it. If you look closely at the wall in person, you can see where Meggs plastered the wall to create this effect. If you walk behind this wall, you will meet the gunman in full view, except now you will notice that he is in fact NOT holding a gun, but rather a spray can. This is a huge distinction that I did not catch the first time I visited.
It’s no secret that bestdamnartblog.com is a huge fan of the photo-sharing app Instagram. It is the only social media outlet in which we are active, and you will have noticed that we link to the Instagram pages of all artists covered in our posts. Instagram became a natural gathering ground for collectors, artists, and gallerists alike due to it elegant and simple interface and obviously because of its relationship to the artistic endeavor of photography.
Every week we’ll try to bring you a group of 5 Instagram pages that you probably aren’t following yet that you should. Read on to see the list.
“Art in the Streets” at MOCA, The Geffen Contemporary, in 2011 saw the beginning of museums opening their walls and exhibition space to the burgeoning street art community. The who’s who of the international street art scene were present at that show, past and current. We’re talking Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Kaws, Retna, Futura, Lee, Fab 5 Freddy, Os Gemeos, Barry McGee, Steve Espo Powers, Todd Reas James, Neckface, and these are just the artists off the top my head. “Vitality and Verve” seem to be looking to tap this niche as well.
We start off exactly where we left off last time, in Long Beach, CA. I will admit that most of the artists below are new to me, but that is why events like Pow! Wow! Long Beach are so valuable to expand your horizon of artists that you were unfamiliar with prior.
Street art purists bemoan the loss of ephemerality of sanctioned walls, that it no longer requires artists to employ stealth, speed, and creativity to complete a mural all while dodging law enforcement, and that it loses its impact of unexpectedly running into a powerful image in the street that wasn’t there the night before. I can agree with that. However, I think there’s still room for community participation in street art that invites casual observers to dive in headfirst to naturally grow the movement.
BDAB was started because we wanted to show another side of the street/urban art community besides just the commercial collaborations, new print releases, and sellout shows. We will showcase promising new artists from where you least expected, take you into homes of passionate collectors that have built real collections, and see what goes on behind the pristine white curtains of galleries. The last decade or so has been monumental to the development of the general art community, and we hope to be part of a lasting movement to propel the street art community to stand out among the crowd.
Please visit our About page to learn more.
Next time, we will take you on a tour of Long Beach, CA, to take a look at how Pow! Wow! and a group of 14 muralists took over the city. Then we will head to Long Beach Museum of Art to view “Vitality and Verve: Transforming the Urban Landscape”.