On July 1st, Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara opened a new solo exhibition from Barry McGee for the summer. I have to say Barry’s shows never disappoint. This specific installation by the San Francisco artist fills the entire museum which is basically one large room and it’s a sensory overload of paintings, sculptures, photos, and personal ephemera of the artist. The attention to detail in each work and the seeming chaos of how the individual works are paired together create new experiences with each run through the floor.
As they say, a picture says a thousand words, so I’ll shut up now and put up my pictures. Enjoy!
The show closes on October 14th, so if you’re in the area, it’s a must-see.
When I moved out to Los Feliz beginning of this year, I heard rumors that the Brazilian writers Os Gemeos had painted a small wall here years ago. I could find pictures of small sections of the wall scattered through the Internet, but never found the actual location. Today, I hopped on my bike and rode around the areas that I suspected this wall could be and voila, I found it! One of the best feelings ever when I caught a glimpse over my shoulder of this white washed wall with what looked liked painted figures from afar.
Here is my gift to the street art world on the Internet of these cool little gems.
We had a post last March about Invader’s (@invaderwashere) museum show at Le Musee en Herbe through friends of the blog, but last month we got a chance to visit the beautiful city of Paris for the full experience ourselves. Even better, while exploring the city, we ran into dozens of invasions by the maestro to see what an ambitious endeavor the artist is carrying out around the world, but especially in his hometown of Paris. Please enjoy the photos and our thoughts on the show.
Space Invader may be the only street artist in the world that could exhibit in a children’s museum while still maintaining his street cred and not feel out of place. His whole artistic manifesto seems to be an invitation to embrace our nostalgia and never stop exploring. I knew that Paris was ground zero for Invader’s tiled invasions, and so I could not help but to keep my eyes open and high up to make sure I didn’t miss any. Instead of being on my phone (unless I was playing Flash Invaders!!!) or looking in a travel guide to see where to go next, we wandered the city on foot and followed people into small alleys and large plazas looking for the next invasion waiting for us around the corner. This newest show by Invader called Hello My Game Is… is no different in its mindset.
The show is for children as much as it is for adults. For children, it is full of wonderment and cartoon characters transformed into forms that are not quite right but still very familiar. It’s simply fun and accessible. It’s art without the pretense. For adults, it is a chance to share with our children the superheroes and characters that we idolized and what they meant for us when we were their age. For those without children yet, it’s a chance to be a kid again, kneeled on the floor putting coins into an arcade game machine to play Pong and Pac-Man.
Le Musee En Herbe is a children’s museum made up of 4 small rooms. When I did my first walkthrough I was disappointed that it was so small and that there were not as many Invaders on the walls as I had hoped, but I actually ended up spending 3 hours in it exploring every piece in the show. It’s an intimate setting and it worked better this way. I’m sure that’s exactly how Invader intended it to be.
The show is also super interactive. In the first room, there are 5 old-school arcade game machines from Pong and Pac-Man to Tetris. The games are free to play and almost always occupied by someone. The nostalgia I felt as I squatted down to play the games was overwhelming, but I didn’t remember it being so uncomfortable kneeling in front of an arcade game. I guess I’ve grown a few inches since elementary school. In the second room, there is a control station with many buttons and as you push on each, the large projection screen will display a corresponding image of a past invasion around the world and also light up a red dot next to a replica of it displayed on the wall. In the last room there is a large section on a wall where you can create your own tiled invasions using colored magnets. Kids really got into it here making Minions and other weird creatures.
Invader’s message to attendees of the show is simple. “Have fun, stay for as long as you want, but while you’re here forget about anything else.” The fact that a street artist of such notoriety was invited to show at a children’s museum in Paris is a sign of how far along the genre has come. Being prominently featured in Banksy’s mockumentary Exit Through the Gift Shop probably didn’t hurt either. Regardless, this is a street artist that is breaking laws everywhere he goes putting up his works on walls that do not belong to him. With this show, Invader transcended street art and is clearly blazing his own path.
If you visit the show in person, don’t forget to pick up some stickers from the vending machine! You never know what you’ll get.
The chief Nychos (@nychos) and DXTR (@dxtrtheweird) of the Weird Crew drove down to sunny Los Angeles to escape the drear of San Francisco a few weeks ago. Being the industrious sorts, they arranged a couple of walls before getting here and wasted no time getting to painting. I got a chance to snap a few quick photos of the wall today, but, of course, a freakin’ truck had to be blocking most of the wall when I got there. Hopefully, my next visit is better. In the meantime, these will have to do.
Street art is an obviously male-dominated culture. I must admit, even this very blog that you are reading right now is a testament of how few woman artists are a part of street/urban art based on the number of posts that mention a female artist. That fact alone makes Margaret Kilgallen stand out, but pair that with her talent and genuine passion for creating, she becomes a legend. Despite her passing too early, her bold, yet muted in color, figures she created in her work on the street and in the galleries still find relevance today.
YouTube recommended the video above to me today and I thought I should share.
The anonymous French artist Space Invader is currently showing his latest exhibition called Hello My Game Is at Le Musee en Herbe in Paris, France. According to museum press release, this is Invader’s first indoor exhibition in Paris since 2011. Being that his work brings nostalgia back to our youthful days with 8-bit video games, it seems fitting that his museum show is at a children’s museum, although that is not to say it isn’t equally entertaining and engaging for the adult fans of Invader. The more surprising part is that a children’s museum invited a notorious street “vandal” (Invader has been arrested several times as a vandal for placing his works on the street), but I think that’s more a statement on how street art in general has become accepted by the worldwide mainstream.
His usual repertoire of works is well represented here, from sculptures to invasion “aliases” like those seen on the streets and “Rubik Cubism” works that are usually seen at his gallery shows. The subject matters of the works are just as wide ranging. My favorite work is the scene from the Disney movie Peter Pan made with Rubik’s cube pieces.
Enjoy these highlights from the show. Picture credits go to friends of BDAB in Paris. You know who you are!
I never thought about this, but hunting for street art through Google Maps Street View should totally be a thing. While clicking through Echo Park streets in Street View, this Low Bros (@low_bros) wall popped out. Looks like it’s a mural completed last summer to coincide with their solo show at Thinkspace Gallery. This random encounter facilitated by the Internets is probably the next best thing to serendipitously walking into it in person. I should get outside more, especially since the weather is so nice today…
-Los Angeles, CA (Thanks, Google)
The blog got a shoutout from Low Bros themselves! I guess someone on their team read the blog. Pretty cool.
As part of Pow!Wow! Long Beach event series for 2016, the legendary New York street photographer Martha Cooper and the playful street artist Ernest Zacharevic are having a talk at the Art Theatre of Long Beach on July 12th. This is a rare chance hear insights from a veteran like Martha Cooper who’s run the streets with the likes of Keith Haring and Futura in the heydays.
I already bought my ticket to the show, so see you guys there!
Over the years, the one-time street artist KAWS has given the KAWS treatment to many familiar pop icons. His first ever foray into popular culture saw the birth of his Companion in the visage of Mickey Mouse.
In the last few years, we’ve seen everything from Spongebob to Snoopy given the crossed out eyes in his paintings and sculptures.
Well, it looks like the artist has found his newest muse as revealed in The Creators’s exclusive preview of his first museum show in the UK simply titled KAWS. The show will be on display from February 6th to June 12th at the Longside Gallery of Yorkshire Sculpture Park.