Meres

The annual Jersey Fresh Jam, Trenton’s premier urban arts festival, was held last Saturday, August 11. Arts educator and photographer Rachel Fawn Alban was there to capture the action as local and regional artists converged — despite intermittent bouts of rain — to bring their talents to the walls of Terracycle INC. What emerged was a wonderful fusion of graffiti and mural art representing a range of sensibilities, styles and themes. Pictured above — from left to right — are Damien Mitchell, Puppet Master Icky and Colombian artist Joems. Several more photos captured by Rachel follow:

Damien Mitchell at work

SoulsNYC with spray can and cell phone in hand

Meres at work with Mek on top

Kes1 at work — in collaboration with Seoz

Ras at work

Ron with multiple spray cans in hand

Photos by Rachel Fawn Alban

Note: Hailed in a range of media from WideWalls to the Huffington Post to the New York Times, our Street Art NYC App is now available for Android devices here.

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The walls at and in the vicinity of  Brooklyn Reclaimed brim with first-rate graffiti by artists from near and far. Pictured above is by Brooklyn Reclaimed curator, Meres One.  Several more images that I recently captured follow:

The legendary T-Kid 170

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NYC-based Rath

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Bronx-based Pase

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The itinerant VIP Rap

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Texas-based Sloke

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New Jersey-based 4Sakn

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 Photos by Lois Stavsky

Note: Hailed in a range of media from WideWalls to the Huffington Post to the New York Times, our Street Art NYC App is now available for Android devices here.

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Since we first discovered Karin du Maire‘s Instagram account, we’ve been fans of her hugely impressive documentation of street art and graffiti. We recently had the opportunity to sit down with her.

We love your documentation of the current street art and graffiti scene – in NYC and in your travels. When did you first turn your lens to urban culture, particularly street art?  

As a travel photographer, I developed a strong interest in urban culture in 2006 while in Rio de Janeiro photographing Passinho dancers in the city’s favelas. At about that time, I started paying more attention to the background, and I began using abandoned buildings as settings. And back here in NYC, I often combined my visits to MoMA PS1 in Long Island City with 5Pointz, where I particularly loved photographing B-boy battles.

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Are you formally trained as a photographer?

No, I studied Business, and I earned an MBA degree from the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. But I’ve taken courses in photography at SVA and I’ve participated in B&H’s Event Space workshops. I also ran a Twitter chat focusing on photography.

When did you first become interested in photography? 

It was a passion of mine in the late 80’s and early 90’s. And then in the late 90’s, I began getting paid assignments as a travel photographer.

You’ve photographed dozens of artists at work. How have they responded to you?

In general, they’ve been very welcoming. They appreciate my photography skills and the exposure that I offer them. I always ask for permission first, and I share my photos with them. Many artists have become my friends, and it is fun to chat and watch them paint.

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What are some of the challenges that you face in the work you are now doing?

Keeping up with all that is happening on the streets; wanting to capture an image when the light is wrong or when there are cars in the way, and trying to help artists by arranging walls for them.

What — would you say — is your current mission?

There is an intrinsic reward in what I am doing – documenting creativity and helping artists grow. And coming from a travel photography background, I would like to get sponsored to photograph street art in different places.

Do you have any particularly memorable experiences from your work here in NYC?

Watching Nychos paint at Coney Art Walls – his amazing raw energy as he sketched freehand.

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Any favorite cities?

Rio de Janeiro and London are among my favorites.

Any proud accomplishments from documenting art on the streets?

My proudest accomplishments generally involve capturing someone in the right place at the right time. It’s the split second that makes the difference! I was so happy, for example, to meet and photograph Sebas Rivas from Córdoba in Argentina while he was sitting aside, off on his own — selling his delightful artwork – amidst all the activity at Art Basel in Miami last year.

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We’ve noticed that you use your iPhone as opposed to a standard camera to capture images.

Yes. I use the iPhone to photograph just about everything that is not an assignment. Most cameras these days are good. What matters is not the camera – but the eye of the photographer… the composition, the light, the moment. In addition, iPhones are less intimidating than huge cameras. And the entire process is shorter, as I have very little editing to do.

What’s ahead for you?

I’m now off to Art Basel in Miami and I am planning to return soon to Cuba, where there is a burgeoning street art scene.

Where do you think street art and graffiti are headed?

Street art will continue to beautify our cities. It will continue to become more mainstream, and there will be more opportunities for artists. I also suspect that there will be more art activism.

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Thank you! And do keep on doing what you are doing! We love it!

Images

1. Beyond on LIC rooftop

2. Meres mural in background with b-boys at 5Pointz in LIC

3. Icy and Sot in Astoria with the Welling Court Mural Project

4. Nychos at work for Coney Art Walls with Martha Cooper with camera

5. Sebas Rivas in Miami

6. Ces photographing his mural at Broadway Junction

All images © Karin du Maire

Interview conducted by Lois Stavsky with Tara Murray

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All-City Express, a hugely impressive interactive art exhibitionmade its world premiere last weekend at Randall’s Island’s Panorama. Under the curatorial direction of 5Pointz Creates leaders Meres One and Marie Flageul, Lady Pink, Tkid 170Toofly, Meres One, Jerms, Topaz, and See tf painted live, covering digital subway cars with original artwork. Fusing graffiti’s underground roots with innovative video technology, the project was developed by Brooklyn-based AST Studios with Tangible Interaction. Here are a few images captured in the course of this three-day cutting-edge homage to traditional graffiti art.

Five of the 5Pointz Creates crew with Marie Flageul in foreground — on green screen

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Lady Pink and Toofly at work on green screen

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And with completed piece as viewed on virtual subway train

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See tf and Python with completed piece on green screen

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Jerms and Topaz  as a mix of technologies brings them at work onto a NYC train in real time

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T-Kid with completed piece on green screen

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And as viewed on virtual train

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Meres One at work on green screen

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Digital tagging by AST Studios; graffiti software by Tangible Interaction & advanced motion capture by PhaseSpace

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And the trains roll by throughout NYC with AST Studios‘ life-like visual effects and editorial content by Possible Productions

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Photo credits: 1, 3-10 Nic Lyte and 2 Rachel Fawn; videos produced by AST Studios

Note: This blog will be on vacation through Sunday, August 7. You can follow us on Facebook and on Instagram.

Hailed in a range of media from the Huffington Post to the New York Times, our Street Art NYC App is now available for Android devices here.

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We love how the walls at Brooklyn Reclaimed — under the curatorial direction of Meres One — have become rotating outdoor canvases.  Pictured above is Panic Rodriguez at work. Here are a few more recent murals —  some captured while in progress, and others when completed.

Amuze

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ZA One at work

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Kais

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Wore at work

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Kenji Takabayashi aka Python

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Pase, BT

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Meres

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Photo credits: 1, 3 & 5 Tara Murray; 2, 4, 6-8 Lois Stavsky

Note: Hailed in a range of media from the Huffington Post to the New York Times, our Street Art NYC App is now available for Android devices here.

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With its vibrantly seductive murals, the exterior of Brooklyn Reclaimed — curated by Meres One — has become an oasis of color and style.  Here are a few more graffiti murals that have recently surfaced — all by artists who’d frequented the former 5Pointz:

Demer

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Topaz and Jerms

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Zimad

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Bishop 203 aka Jats

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Photos by City-as-School intern Sol Raxlen

Keep posted to our Facebook page and Instagram for more graffiti and street art on the grounds of Brooklyn Reclaimed.

Note: Hailed in a range of media from the Huffington Post to the New York Times, our Street Art NYC App is now available here for Android devices.

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Meres, Jerms, Topaz, See TF, Python and Demer made their way — several weeks back — to First Street Green, where they painted an ode to the historic East Village/Lower East Side neighborhood. Here are a few more images:

Python aka Kenji

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Meres One

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Python, DemerMeres One

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Jerms

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The huge mural was painted in collaboration with the Centrefuge Public Art Project and First Street Green. The art park is located at 33 East First Street on the site of — what was once — a derelict building.

Note: First image features TopazMeres One and See TF

Photos: 1 & 2 Tara Murray; 3 Dani Reyes Mozeson and 4 & 5 Lois Stavsky

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Curated by Lady K Fever and hosted by Aldo Perez, Ihe Art of Peace, an exhibit of mural and graffiti art celebrating peace, opens tonight at the Al Iman Community Center. I had the opportunity to speak to Lady K Fever while visiting the space at 2006 Westchester Avenue earlier this week.

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Can you tell us something about the concept behind this exhibit?

It is an exploration of the notion of peace from the perspective of artists representing a range of ideologies, nationalities, religious backgrounds and ethnicities. The title is a take on The Art of War by Sun Tzu written in the 6th century B.C.

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What inspired it?

It was inspired by Peace December, an organization started five years ago dedicating the month of December to celebrating peace. As Sheikh Musa Drammeh of Peace December contends, trillions of dollars are spent on defense and none are allocated to promoting peace. 

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As curator, how did you decide which artists to engage in this exhibit? 

When Aldo Perez approached me to curate it, I sought artists from a range of backgrounds and communities. Many, in fact, had already been engaged in community-based projects promoting co-existence.

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What were some of the particular challenges you faced in curating this exhibit?

My main concern was that the imagry would not offend the community. I also had to keep the artists’ egos in check, reminding them that The Art of Peace’s principal mission is to promote peace. And I was working with a limited budget.

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The exhibit opens this evening from 6-10pm. How might folks — who can’t make it this evening — see it?

Yes, there will be a reception tonight with DJ Prince Tafari, the artists and special guests — including Assemblyman Jose Rivera. There will also be select artworks for sale. Folks who won’t be able to attend can email artists4peacebx@gmail.com and arrange a time to visit The Art of Peace.

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Images:

1.  Rocko 

2. BG183, Tats Cru with Lady K Fever and Aldo Perez posed in front

3. Meres One

4. Chris Riggs

5. Scratch and Lady K Fever

6. Lexi Bella

Interview and photos by Lois Stavsky

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Reclaimed, Meres One‘s solo exhibit at Bushwick’s Low Brow Artique, brilliantly celebrates Meres‘s wonderful talents and his love of graffiti. I spoke to Meres soon after visiting the exhibit:

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Can you tell us something about the title of the exhibit, Reclaimed? What does it mean?

After many months of coping with the loss of 5Pointz, Reclaimed is my way of revisiting and reclaiming my early days as a graffiti artist.

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When did you first come up with the concept with the exhibit?  And can you tell us something about the process of preparing for it? 

I came up with the general idea in January, and when I showed some of the pieces I was working on to Bishop, he offered me a solo show at Low Brow Artique. In preparation, I revisited hundreds of photos of walls that I had painted at 5Pointz. My next step was to reinterpret them — selecting fragments from them and honoring my appreciation of hand-style.

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What about the centerpiece? It is so impressive! Its texture is just beautiful. It looks as though it was painted on reclaimed wood.

Yes, I painted it on a piece of wood that was reclaimed from the Coney Island boardwalk. I love that it has taken on a new life in this exhibit.

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How has the response been to the exhibit?

It’s been great! The opening was wonderful, and only two pieces remain. The others were sold shortly after the exhibit opened. I am currently preparing for a Part II, where I will take my work on this same concept to another — more abstract — level while working on a range of different surfaces.

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Note: Reclaimed remains on view at Low Brow Artique through Saturday May 9.  Now open seven days a week, Low Brow Artique is situated at 143 Central Avenue in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

Interview and photos by Lois Stavsky 

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In an eclectic range of visual styles and themes, music makes it way to NYC walls. Here  is a small sampling:

Zeso, close-up from huge mural in Bushwick

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Andre Trenier, lead artist, in the Bronx

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 Kingbee, Pose2 and Chemis in East Harlem

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MeresSloneSee TFShiroIZK and more in Bushwick

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Close-up

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Manny Vega in East Harlem

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Sonni in Bushwick

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Mike Brown on the Lower East Side

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Unidentified artist in Bedford-Stuyvesant

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Photo credits: 1, 2, 5 – 9 Lois Stavsky; 3 Dani Reyes Mozeson; 4 Tara Murray

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