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el nino and werc street art brownsville NYC <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

Conceived and facilitated by N Carlos J – noted artist, community revitalizer and founder of Brooklyn Is the Future – Writing on the Walls is a Brownsville-based mural arts initiative. Inspired to launch this project for his father, a Brownsville native who was diagnosed with cancer last year, N. Carlos’s Jay has engaged over a dozen artists in transforming his dad’s former stomping grounds into a vibrant outdoor canvas.

Another close-up from Werc and El Nino de las Pinturas

werc street art face brownsville <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

Eelco, close-up

eelco street art brownzville nyc <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

BK Foxx based on photo by Bytegirl

bkfoxx street art brownsville NYC <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

Lexi Bella

Lexi Bella streeet art mural Brownsville NYC  <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

Fumero

fumero street art nyc <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

N Carlos J

n carlos j brownsville <em>Writing on the Walls</em> in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Part I with: Werc, El Nino de las Pinturas, Eelco, BK Foxx, Lexi Bella, Fumero and N Carlos J

Note: This blog will be on vacation through mid-September. You can follow us on Instagram and on our Facebook page. Part II of Writing on the Walls to be featured on our return.

Photo credits: 1, 4 & 6 Tara Murray; 2, 3, 5 & 7 Lois Stavsky

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On view at the Judith Charles Gallery though tomorrow — Sunday — is a selection of new works, along with salvaged ones, by many of the artists who had participated in last year’s landmark 21st Precinct Exhibit. Here is a sampling:

Alice Mizrachi

Alice Mizrachi art 21st precinct 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Ghost and Giz, fragment salvaged from last year’s installation

giz and ghost graffiti fragment 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Chris Soria and Misha Tyutyunik

Chris Soria and Misha Tyutyunik art collab 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Pesu 

pesu art 21st precinct 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Lorenzo Masnah. fragment

lorenzo masnah recycled art 21st precinct 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Ben Angotti. close-up

Ben Antotti art on canvas 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Bad Pedestrian

bad pedestrian 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

N Carlos J

N Carlos J 21st precinct exhibit 21st Precinct Anniversary Exhibit Continues Through Tomorrow at 196 Bowery: Alice Mizrachi, Ghost & Giz, Chris Soria & Misha Tyutyunik, Pesu, Lorenzo Masnah, Ben Angotti, Bad Pedestrian, N Carlos J & more

Presented by Outlaw Arts, the exhibit remains on view 1-9pm today, Saturday, and tomorrow.

Photos of artworks by Lois Stavsky 

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The Weird street art and graffiti Bushwick NYC  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

Five members of the blazingly brilliant Weird Crew have made their way to NYC.  And to our delight, they’ve just completed an ingenious mural on Johnson Avenue and are busily preparing for an exhibit to open tomorrow evening at Exit Room. We had the opportunity to meet them yesterday.

Just what exactly is the Weird Crew?

It’s a collective of ten artists spread throughout Germany and Austria.

Look the weird action graffiti street art nyc  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

How and when did you all meet? And what brought you together?

We met back in 2011 at a festival in Vienna. Some of us knew each other from before, but 2011 is when the crew was founded. We’ve all painted live, participated in festivals and exhibits and have engaged in projects with international companies. Two of us — Cone and Vidam — are also professional DJs and music producers.

cone the weird action graffiti street art nyc  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

You all have distinct styles, and yet you work so seamlessly together.  It is quite amazing!

Yes, although our styles are different, we share a similar aesthetic sensibility. And we stay in touch and exchange ideas with each other regularly.

Dxtr the weird action graffiti street art nyc  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

What inspired the particular mural that you just completed painting in Bushwick?

Soon after we arrived in Bushwick, we took a bike ride into Manhattan. We were struck by those folks who often go unnoticed — the workers who keep this city going, who are also the “invisible New Yorkers.” Our mural is a homage to them.

The Weird street art and graffiti mural NYC  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

And what do you guys think of New York City?

We love it. We love its energy and diversity — its wonderful mix of cultures.

Cone weird art Exit Room NYC  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

What can we expect to see at Weird World  — your soon-to-open exhibit at Exit Room?

Something weird!

the weird crew at exit room  The Blazingly Brilliant <em>Weird Crew</em> Arrives from Europe to the Streets of Bushwick and Exit Room NY

Note: Weird World featuring works by Weird Crew members CONE, DXTR, HRVB, LOOK and VIDAM opens tomorrow evening, Friday, at 6pm at Exit Room. Curated by Zoe Beatwoman, the opening will continue until late with DJ Angel Russell aka Sloane Sophisticate and live musical performances by Perla Cozzone, Starr Busby and Jadon Woodard. The works will remain on exhibit through September 10.

Images: 1. Close-up from completed outdoor mural; 2. Look the Weird at work; 3. Cone the Weird at work; 4. Dxtr the Weird at work; 5. Segment from completed mural and 6. Cone the Weird in Exit Room NY, close-up

Photo credits: 1, 5 & 6 Lois Stavsky; 2-4 Tara Murray

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Gorey and Ezo street art and graffiti apple gate project bushwick nyc <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

A huge industrial building at 61 Jefferson Street – a short walk from the JMZ Myrtle Avenue line – has become the backdrop for a wonderful mix of vibrant public art. I recently spoke to its curator, Whisper aka Chip Love.

SP one Apple Gate Project Brooklyn <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

What an ideal space for this wonderfully diverse artwork! How did you come upon it?

My friend, Brian Sturm, introduced me to John Weiss, the president of Apple Restoration & Waterproofing. John was interested in beautifying the exterior of his business, and Brian thought I might be interested in curating such a project.

bis uno and diego127 graffiti apple gate project bushwick <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

Can you tell us a bit more about Apple Gate Project Bushwick’s mission?

Its mission is to beautify the property here at 61 Jefferson with public art and to aesthetically connect to the community.

Chip street art apple gate mural project <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

How many artists were engaged in the project?

By the time it was completed, 15 had been involved.

mast noxer graffiti <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

The art here represents such a wonderful mix of cultures. In addition to many legendary NYC-based artists, participants include: Brazilian artist Binho; Australian artist John Kaye and French artist Gorey.  How did you manage to engage such an eclectic group of talented artists?

I called my friends who then called their friends.

quik graffiti apple gate project bushwick <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

What particular challenges did you face in seeing the project to completion?

Challenges were limited. Because the property is a restoration company, we had everything we could possibly need at our disposal: lifts, scaffolding, ladders. John Weiss was wonderfully accommodating. And the entire exterior was power-washed before it was painted.

John Kaye and Spar graffiti street art Apple Gate Project Bushwick NYC <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

How has the response been?

There hasn’t yet been much publicity, as we’ve kept it largely undercover while we were working on it. But the word is getting out, and the response that we’ve been getting is incredible. You can check out the hashtag #AppleGateProjectBushwick on Instagram.

Noxer binho graffiti <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

What’s ahead for you?

Continuing my art, connecting with like-minded people and building more projects like this one!

noxer street art whisper John Weiss Apple Gate Project Bushwick <em>Apple Gate Project Bushwick</em> with Gorey, SP.ONE, Bis Uno & Diego 127, Whisper, Mast, Quik, Spar, John Kaye, Noxer, Binho and more

Images: 1. Gorey 2. Greg Lamarche aka SP.ONE 3. Bis Uno & Diego 127 4. Whisper 5. Mast; bottom side gate Noxer 6. Quik 7. John Kaye & Spar 8. Noxer & Binho 9. Noxer with Whisper standing and John Weiss of Apple Restoration and Waterproofing seated to his right

Photo credits: 1-5, 7 & 9 Lois Stavsky; 6 & 8 Tara Murray

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Warmi Paint Ecuador Toofly on the Upcoming All Women Warmi Paint Arts Festival in Quito

We miss Toofly when she isn’t in NYC, but we love what she’s up to in her native Quito. You can find out about her current project here:

Just what exactly is Warmi Paint?

Warmi Paint is an all-women arts and culture festival that will launch this fall in Quito, Ecuador.

Graffiti Ecuador. jpg Toofly on the Upcoming All Women Warmi Paint Arts Festival in Quito

What is Warmi Paint’s mission?

Its mission is to celebrate and empower Latin American women street artists with a focus on graffiti, street art and murals.

What does the name Warmi mean or represent?

Warmi means “woman” in Quechua. It is the name of the people of the Central Andes of South America. It is also the name of their language. Women of all ages from this part of the world will create a new vision of themselves, nurture their communities and reflect a powerful message.

Ecuador graffiti Women Toofly on the Upcoming All Women Warmi Paint Arts Festival in Quito

What can visitors expect?

Special guests and 20 women artists will paint collaborative murals, host workshops, and present their work to the Ecuadorian community. We will have graffiti films, slideshow presentations, panels, youth workshops, pop-up shops and a concert! People of all ages will benefit from this unique cross-cultural exchange and community-building experience.

Warmi Paint Image Toofly on the Upcoming All Women Warmi Paint Arts Festival in Quito

It sounds wonderful! Good luck with this!

Note: Your support will help artist/curator TOOFLY (NYC) and artist/curator HTM (Ecuador) realize their mission.  Find out how you can help fund the project here.

Photos courtesy of Toofly

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As featured earlier this year in the New York Times, Nic 707’s Instafame Phantom Art movement continues to bring dozens of artists — from Old School writers to contemporary painters — back into NYC subway trains. Here are a few recently-captured images:

The legendary Skeme of Style Wars fame

skeme graffiti subway art Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Gear One

gear one subway art Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Nic 707

Nic 707 instafame phantom art Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Ivory

ivory graffiti  Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

The legendary Taki 183

taki 183 subway graffiti Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Michael Cuomo

michael Cuomo abstract subway art Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Kingbee — with fragment of Michael Cuomo on left

kingbee subway art nyc Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Misha Tyutyunik

M Dot subway art Riding the NYC Subway Trains with: Skeme, Gear One, Nic 707, Ivory, Taki 183, Michael Cuomo, Kingbee and Misha Tyutyunik

Photos by Lois Stavsky

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buff monster close up street art nyc The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

Earlier this month, the LoMan Art Festival brought not only live art by a wonderfully diverse range of artists to Downtown Manhattan, but also a series of workshops, performances and events. And even though the festival has officially ended, mammoth murals continue to surface on our streets. Here are a few scenes from it all:

Another close-up from Buff Monster‘s huge mural

buff monster mural fragment les lisa project nyc The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

Beau Stanton at work on mammoth mural on East Third Street

Beau stanton street art nyc The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

 French artist Ludo in the East Village

Ludo street art LISA Project NYC The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

Dain and Montreal-based artist Stikki Peaches

dain and stikki peaches street art nyc The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

JCorp at the Social Sticker Club‘s installation inside the Mulberry Street lot during the festival

J Corp sticker social club loman arts fest The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

Ron English with assistance from Solus standing to his right

Ron English street art LoMan Arts Festival NYC The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

JPO and B.D. White, one of many collaborations spotted along Mulberry Street

JPO BD White street art NYC The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

Leon Reid,  alongside murals by Team Crash — John Matos, Ananda Nahu and Izolag — and Team BIO — Bio, Nicer and Binho — for the Secret Walls Illustration Battle

Art Battles Leon Reid street art nyc The LoMan Art Festival in Downtown Manhattan with: Buff Monster, Beau Stanton, Ludo, Dain & Stikki Peaches, J Corp, Ron English, B.D. White & JPO, Leon Reid and more

Keep posted to the StreetArtNYC Facebook page for more images of the works that have surfaced and continue to do so in Downtown Manhattan through the efforts of the LISA Project

Photo credits: 1, 3, 5, 6 & 9 Dani Reyes Mozeson; 2 & 4 Tara Murray; 7 Rey Rosa Photography / The LoMan Art Festival and 8 Lois Stavsky

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Werc rubin415 Billy Mode street art Baltimore section1 Project Section I Project in Baltimore with: Werc, Rubin, Billy Mode, Nether, Adam Estes, Adam Stab, La Anarchy, Kike Castillo & Jesse Kuzniarsk

While in Baltimore earlier this month, I stumbled upon an intriguing medley of murals just a few steps from Station North. I soon discovered that they were sponsored by Section 1, an ambitious urban art project aimed at transforming an adjacent abandoned 3.5-acre site into a huge urban art park with over 70,000 square feet of paintable surfaces. Here are a few more murals I sighted that day, some of which are certain to have been repainted in this open-air revolving canvas.

Baltimore native Nether

Nether section1 project street art Baltimore Section I Project in Baltimore with: Werc, Rubin, Billy Mode, Nether, Adam Estes, Adam Stab, La Anarchy, Kike Castillo & Jesse Kuzniarsk

New Orleans native Adam Estes

Adam Estes section 1 Project Baltimore street art Section I Project in Baltimore with: Werc, Rubin, Billy Mode, Nether, Adam Estes, Adam Stab, La Anarchy, Kike Castillo & Jesse Kuzniarsk

Baltimore-based Adam Stab

adam stab section 1 project graffiti Baltimore Section I Project in Baltimore with: Werc, Rubin, Billy Mode, Nether, Adam Estes, Adam Stab, La Anarchy, Kike Castillo & Jesse Kuzniarsk

La Anarchy

LA Anarchy Section 1 Project Public Art Baltimore Section I Project in Baltimore with: Werc, Rubin, Billy Mode, Nether, Adam Estes, Adam Stab, La Anarchy, Kike Castillo & Jesse Kuzniarsk

Baltimore-based Colombian tattoo artists Kike Castillo and Jesse Kuzniarsk

Kike Castillo and Jesse Kuzniarski Section 1 project Baltimore street art  Section I Project in Baltimore with: Werc, Rubin, Billy Mode, Nether, Adam Estes, Adam Stab, La Anarchy, Kike Castillo & Jesse Kuzniarsk

 Note: The first image pictured is a collaborative mural by Werc, Rubin and Billy Mode

Photos by Lois Stavsky

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Nether Freddy Gray Mural Baltimore copy Baltimore Based Artist/Activist Nether on Breaking Down Barriers, Honoring Freddy Gray, Forging Street Art for Social Justice and more

A few years back, several wheatpastes – many of children — surfaced on the walls of NYC’s marginal neighborhoods. The works of Baltimore-based artist and activist Nether, they seamlessly reflected the folks with whom they shared the streets. In his native Baltimore, Nether has been actively involved in several community-oriented projects, including Baltimore Slumlord Watch drawing attention to neglected properties and the issue of vacant housing. And in 2013, as founder and president of the non-profit, Wall Hunters, INC, he facilitated the installation of 17 murals on abandoned properties in Baltimore.  More recently,  Nether‘s focus has been on the death of Freddy Gray at the hands of his city’s police and Baltimore’s broken justice system. While visiting Baltimore earlier this month, I had the opportunity to speak to Nether and visit some of his recent murals.

When I last visited Baltimore, you were involved in the Wall Hunters: Slumlord Project.  Its intention was to expose landlords who had neglected properties. Have you seen any outcomes from this project?

Definitely! Since the project began, there’s been dialogue on the issue and focus from the social justice community. It’s hard to know if we were directly responsible, but several buildings that we targeted have been demolished. The first one happened only a month after Stefan Ways painted his piece on it.

Nether and Stefan Ways mural art Rose Street Baltimore Based Artist/Activist Nether on Breaking Down Barriers, Honoring Freddy Gray, Forging Street Art for Social Justice and more

How has the local art scene changed in these past few years?

It really has.  There seem to be many more projects coming from a variety of directions and approaches.  Also, recently there has been a lot of reflection in the art scene on the many barriers in the city that separate people. Hopefully, this will create pressure on curators, venues, gallery owners, and arts businesses to diversify their crowds, artists and outreach. There has, also, been a focus on social justice through street art this summer. I have been involved in organizing murals in Sandtown. BOPA has been running this amazing ART@WORK program — in partnership with Jubilee  –  teaching and employing kids in Sandtown to paint murals with professionals such as Ernest Shaw.  Also, a group of Morgan students organized an installation on Greenmount Avenue adjacent to a wall by Pablo Machioli and Gaia.  Other active projects include: Richard Best’s Section 1 Project and the Shift Project in Highlandtown.

Nether and Stefan ways mural baltimore Baltimore Based Artist/Activist Nether on Breaking Down Barriers, Honoring Freddy Gray, Forging Street Art for Social Justice and more

The memorial mural that you painted in tribute to Freddy Gray has garnered quite a bit of media attention.  At what point did you begin painting the mural?

The planning began after his death around the time of the first protest, and I began painting the mural the day the curfew ended.

What was the mood like the evening of his death?

People were respectful and united.  So much solidarity that evening. The people were taking their pain and turning it into an incredibly positive movement.

Nether street art baltimore Baltimore Based Artist/Activist Nether on Breaking Down Barriers, Honoring Freddy Gray, Forging Street Art for Social Justice and more

How do folks in Sandtown respond to your presence in their neighborhood?

Generally, people are surprised, yet welcoming.  People constantly speak to me, and I always welcome that.  I essentially sit on a ladder all day and receive stories.  My feeling is that I’m a guest in their neighborhood, and I need the people’s blessings to paint.  Also, I’m very up-front about my personal background and what part of the city I’m from. I do get occasional comments that are meant to offend me, but street art in Baltimore has the potential to break down the social boundaries created by decades and decades of discrimination.  A mutual feeling of Bmore Love among Baltimoreans is one of those forces that is so strong that, I believe, it can get over any hurdle that is thrown in front of it.  When I go to a place like Sandtown, it is to create a dialogue and deal with hard topics that I have to be comfortable talking about. What I do isn’t easy; it deals with very difficult issues.  Many of the conversations that I have had with people have heavily influenced my artwork. I try to plan murals that are able to adapt and change through dialogue and the creative process.

Nether mural art Baltimore Baltimore Based Artist/Activist Nether on Breaking Down Barriers, Honoring Freddy Gray, Forging Street Art for Social Justice and more

What did bring you to Sandtown at such a difficult time?

Having previously done many paste-ups and murals in Sandtown, loving Baltimore, and the fact that state violence had been the focus of my work for a while now.

And how has the response to the final mural been?

Folks have been extremely appreciative and supportive.  The mural has attracted media, often giving residents the chance to speak out about those issues that are so important to the entire city.  The more murals that go up from all the projects going on in Sandtown, the more this will happen. The idea is to promote a message that is amplified so loudly that it can no longer be ignored.

Nether Mural caught in the lines Baltimore Based Artist/Activist Nether on Breaking Down Barriers, Honoring Freddy Gray, Forging Street Art for Social Justice and more

What’s ahead?

More murals in Baltimore that will act to aid the movement and call out the issues that have plagued Baltimore’s neglected neighborhoods for generations.

Note: Photos 2 and 3 are of murals done in collaboration with Stefan Ways.

Interview by Lois Stavsky; photo 4 by Lois Stavsky; all others courtesy of the artist.

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bk foxx art all city street art expo Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

Opening tomorrow at 23 Meadow Street in East Williamsburg, the three-day All City Art Expo 2015 is an exuberant celebration of NYC’s outdoor art culture. We stopped by yesterday and had the opportunity to speak to Evan Tobias of Cluster Wall who, along with Kevin Michael, curated the exhibit.

dain all city art expo nyc Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

This is quite an eclectic collection of art here! What is the concept behind the All City Art Expo?

It is a celebration of all outdoor art. We wanted to showcase a range of artwork — by sticker artists, graffiti writers, street artists and muralists — all in one setting.

see one all city art expo nyc Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

And it looks great! How did you find such an ideal setting?

We began looking at spaces awhile back. And Mona Liza Furniture — a huge arena with ample outdoor space —  offered to host us.

rob plater all city art expo Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

It couldn’t be more perfect! When did you begin working on this All City Art Expo?

I met Kevin Michael many months ago. We began working together on this project back in the winter.

zimad graffiti character all city art expo Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

There are so many artists here representing so many different styles, concepts and genres. How did you choose which ones to include?

When Kevin and I came up with this concept, we wrote up a wish list that included a range of artists from Old School graff guys to ones whose works have surfaced recently on our streets.

taki 183 nic 707 all city art expo Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

What was your greatest challenge in organizing this event?

Handling the logistics behind working with over 100 artists!

art is trash all city art expo Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

What can visitors expect — besides a chance to see and purchase such an extensive selection of artworks?

The Sticker Social Club will join us and visitors will have a chance to “slap and share.”  There will be a Black Book Jam on Sunday with many Old School writers in attendance. On both Saturday and Sunday a Groundswell artist will lead mural workshops. And there will be music all weekend by DJ Pumpkin, food by Arrogant Swine, along with drinks, vendors and raffles.

rocko Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

Can you tell us something about your relationship with Groundswell?

We have asked each artist to donate a canvas — an All City Compact Canvas – that will be sold for $150.00. Proceeds will be donated to Groundswell to support the wonderfully transformative projects the organization brings to our communities in its work with youth.

IMG 7853 Three Day All City Art Expo Brings Outdoor Art Inside with: BK Foxx, Dain, See One, Rob Plater, Zimad, Taki183, Art is Trash, Rocko and more

Good luck!  It’s all so impressive, and it looks like it will be so much fun!

Images: 1. BK Foxx 2. Dain 3. See One 4. Rob Plater 5. Zimad 6. Taki 183 and Nic 707 7. Art is Trash 8. Rocko

Interview by Lois Stavsky

Photo credits: 1, 3 5-8 Lois Stavsky; 2 & 4 Dani Reyes Mozeson

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