sculpture

Hektad-and-Urbanimal-Repurposed-art-Fat-Free-Art

An extraordinary array of found objects have been transformed into intriguing repurposed art for Fat Free Art‘s first annual Bizarre Bazaar.  Pictured above is Hektad‘s American graffiti flag looming over Urbanimal‘s table. Here are severel more works from this stylishly imaginative exhibit.

Raphael Gonzalez, An Ciana

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Tomaso Albertini, Butterfly Effect, huge segment of framed piece

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What Will You Leave Behind, Worth Nothing

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Icy and Sot, Let Her Be Free

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Bianca Romero, The Muse Says — to the right of  Hektad‘s spray cans — and shoes designed by SacSix on shelf below

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JPO, 3 of a Kind

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Suckadelic, Pussy Grabs Back

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The exhibit continues through March 4 at Fat Free Art, 102 Allen Street on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. It is open Tuesday – Saturday 11AM-7PM & Sunday 12PM-5PM,

Photos by Lois Stavsky

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

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While exploring the streets of Mexico City earlier this month, I meandered into Huerto Roma Verde, a huge urban community garden — largely constructed with salvaged materials — in the South Roma colony. Committed to ecological awareness and sustainable consumption, it features a range of workshops and activities for folks of all ages.  It is also rich and varied not only in its offerings and produce, but in its public art, as well. Here is a small sampling:

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One of many art pieces on its grounds

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And this one capturing its spirit–

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As seen from the outside

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Photos by Lois Stavsky

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NYC’s prolific RAE BK will join forces with the legendary DJ Kool Herc at 99 Bowery on New Year’s Eve for an unprecented event. A brief interview with RAE BK about his new exhibit  and its New Years Eve launch follows:

This sure seems like a fun way to spend New Years Eve! What spurred you to do this? 

After everything that has gone on with this Presidential Election in the US, I decided the best way to bring in a 2017 is with a bang.  I hope it’s a way to at least turn the page for an evening for those who attend. The name of the exhibition is All Systems Go and it centers around the comparison of discarded objects and human beings.

What kinds of works can we expect to see? On the streets we’ve spotted everything from your stickers to your huge installations?

There will be about 40 pieces ranging from ‘found object’ sculptures to large scale canvases to paintings on paper.  These are works I have made over the course of eight months.  And what better way to say goodbye to 2016 than to have a living legend, the Father of Hip-Hop, DJ Kool Herc, to bring some bass and get people moving later on?

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Can you tell us something about the found objects that you have been working with? Where did you find them?

A lot of the parts I have collected and used to make the work have come from an area in Willets Point. Queens, NYC.   It’s about a 10- block section full of “chop shops,” huge pot holes and some really weathered people. The feeling is third-world for sure. For someone looking at it from the outside — like me — it’s like the land of the forgotten.  Mechanics look like they’ve put in a week’s straight worth of doing car repairs. Others are selling drugs and looking to turn tricks. The work I have created is as much a reflection of the materials as it is of the environment.  A lot of rusted metals, worn fabrics and scraps of plastics… Think “pop-artifacts.”

What was it like to work with these objects?

While working in my studio, I kept seeing the worn and weary faces of the people I encountered in the weathered parts. I adopted the philosphy of making the best of the materials you are given.  And these materials came from the people of Willets Point. People there do what they have to do to make a living. Whatever it takes. The interesting thing is that for all the rusted, decayed, crushed pieces I found, I also found stuff that had a nice gold or silver shine or burst of color that created a cool high-end, low-end quality to the finished pieces.

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How can one attend All Systems Go on New Years Eve?

Opening night will be a ticketed event with open bar and music spun on vinyl by DJ Kool Herc.  I will be giving away a small original piece of work just before midnight too. You can get tickets here.

And if we can’t make it to the New Years Eve opening, will we still be able to see your show?

Yes! The show will run for at least another week after that. Check my Instagram for updates.

Interview by Lois Stavsky; photos 2 & 4 from NYC streets, Tara Murray

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 the mission of fostering a dialog with the surrounding neighborhood and urban landscape, High Line Art — curated by Cecelia Alemani — presents a wide array of provocative artworks in a range of media. Pictured above is I want a president, Zoe Leonard‘s 1992 text-based work installed on the occasion of today’s election. Here are several more works that can be seen on the High Line.

 Tony Matelli, Sleepwalker — for Wanderlust, a group exhibition exploring the themes of walking, journeys and pilgrimages

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And alone at dusk

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Matt Johnson, Untitled — repurposed original High Line rail track  — for Wanderlust

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 Kathryn Andrews, Sunbathers II, as seen at dusk

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Barbara Kruger, “BLIND IDEALISM IS REACTIONARY SCARY DEADLY, an adaptation of a quote from Frantz Fanon

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Photo credits: 1 & 6 Lois Stavsky; 2 & 4 Dani Reyes Mozeson and 3 & 5 Romare Taylor

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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In collaboration with the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance and NYC Parks, FLUX Public Art Projects has brought over three dozen arresting sculptures and installations — all rich with cultural references — to Marcus Garvey Park. Pictured above is Bayeté Ross Smith, Got the Power: Boomboxes.  Here are several more:

Jordan Baker-Caldwell, Golem

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Jack Howard Potter, Belvedere Torso

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Richard Vivenzio, Untitled

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Suprina, DNA Totem. close-up

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Jason WallaceCrosshairs

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Capucine BourcartTrompe l’oeil

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Bob Clyatt, (E)scape

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Photo credits: 1, 3 & 6 City-as-School intern Sol Raxlen; 2 Lois Stavsky 4, 5, 7 & 8 Tara Murray

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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Among the thoroughly engaging exhibits currently on view at the Bronx Museum of the Arts are two with special appeal to us street art and graffiti aficionados. Spotlight: John Ahearn and Rigoberto Torres showcases a series of sculptures by the two artists, whose works continue to delight us on the streets of the Bronx.  And Bronx Focus: Paintings by Valeri Larko features stunningly realistic renditions of Bronx graffiti, including some of our favorite walls that no longer exist. While visiting the Museum last week, we had the opportunity to speak to Lauren Click, the Director of Community and Public Programs.

Thank you for reaching out to us. Can you tell us something about your role here?

As director of community and public programs, I organize public programs related to Museum exhibits and events. I also work with the Community Advisory Council (CAC) a volunteer group of local residents with the goal of raising awareness of the Museum and organizing programming in response to community needs.

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What are some of the successful means that have been used to accomplish this?

I like to introduce folks to new experiences while mixing them with familiar ones. For example, on senior Thursdays we combine tea services with multimedia collaborative activities. We also have a weekly newsletter we send to subscribers informing them of all the events that take place. This is part of our effort to establish a large presence on social media. Our twitter page has over 38,000 followers. And since admission has become free, we have had four times as many visitors than we used to.

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What are some of the challenges that you face?

The greatest challenge is fighting the stereotype of being located in the Bronx. People are not aware of how rich and varied the cultural opportunities are in this borough.

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What would you like to see happen here at the Bronx Museum?

I would like to see it continue to evolve and engage increasingly diverse audiences.

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How can people stay informed as to all that is happening here at the Bronx Museum of the Arts?

They can follow our Calendar of Events on the Museum’s website. They can also keep up with us on Twitter, on Facebook and on Instagram.

Note: This Saturday — May 14, 2:00pm to 3:30pm — Valeri Larko will offer a free guided tour of her exhibit Bronx Focus: Paintings by Valeri Larko. The Museum is located at 1040 Grand Concourse, Bronx and is easily accessible by public transportation.

Images

1 Rigoberto Torres, Daze

2 John Ahearn and Rigoberto Torres

3 Valeri Larko, Zerega Avenue

4 Valeri Larko, Ferris Stahl Meyer Shipping

Valeri Larko, Power Ball

Photo credits: 1 Tara Murray; 2-5 City-as-School intern Sol Raxlen; interview Lois Stavsky, Sol Raxlen and Tara Murray

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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Splendidly curated by Laura James and Eileen WalshBronx Now showcases a wide range of artworks in different media by some of the best artists working in the Bronx. Among these are several whose works also enhance public spaces. While visiting the exhibit on Sunday, I had the opportunity to speak to both curators and pose a few questions to Laura James, the founder of BX200.

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Just what is BX200? And when was it launched?

BX200 is a directory of 200 artists, all of whom live or work in the Bronx. It was officially launched at the Bronx Museum of the Arts in March 2015.

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 What is its mission? And what spurred you to launch it?

Its mission is to connect our borough’s best artists to as wide an audience as possible from curators to collectors to other artists. My initial incentive in launching it was to get to know other artists living and working in the Bronx.

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You and  Eileen Walsh have, obviously, accomplished so much working together. The directory looks great, and this exhibit is wonderful. How did you two initially meet?

Awhile back, Eileen had invited me to participate in an exhibit she was curating elsewhere. Then when she read about BX200, she was eager to partner with me.

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The art here is spread across two rooms, and it all looks amazing. How did this great space come your way?

Eileen introduced me to it, and I thought it would be an ideal setting to introduce a selection of Bronx artists to folks who frequent Brooklyn spaces, particularly in Bushwick where so much is happening.

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How did you decide which artists to include in Bronx Now?  Some of the artists are quite young and relatively unknown, and others have established reputations and have exhibited in renowned museums.

We were interested in presenting a snapshot of the Bronx featuring works that we love — in a variety of styles and media — from a wide range of artists.

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The exhibit opened with a reception Saturday evening How did the opening go?

It was fantastic! About 300 people came and we had Andre Trenier painting live

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What are some of the other events we can look forward to this week? 

This Thursday, May 5, there will be a Bronx Now Artist Talk from 6-8pm. Participants will include Tats CruJohn Ahearn, Rebecca Allan, Danny Peralta and Alicia Grullon. And this Saturday there will be a closing reception from 5-8pm with a performance by Paco Cao. From Wednesday through Saturday’s closing, the gallery — located at 119 Ingraham Street — opens at noon. Enter through Terra Firma.

Congratulations on BX200 and this wonderful exhibit! I’m looking forward to more.

Images

1. John Ahearn with curators Laura James and Eileen Walsh

2. Bio, Tats Crew

3. Eric Orr

4. Crash

5. Nicer, Tats Cru

6. Andre Trenier, close-up

7. MRS

Photo credit: 1, 2, 4-7 Lois Stavsky; 3 courtesy Laura James; interview conducted and edited by 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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As the line between street art and public art continues to blur, we find ourselves increasingly intrigued by the range of public art that surfaces in NYC parks. What follows is a sampling of what we’ve captured these past few months in Battery Park.

German sculptor Fritz Koenigthe Sphere, the sole surviving artwork from the grounds of the original World Trade Center

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Ned Smyth, The Upper Room, close-up

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British artist Tony Cragg, Resonating Bodies (one of two bronze sculptures resembling giant musical instruments)

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Jim Dine, The Ape & Cat (at the Dance)

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 Constance Mallinson, Souvenir (fragment) for the Cool Globes traveling exhibition

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Nancy L Steinmeyer First We Scream, Then We Are for the Cool Globes traveling exhibition

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Photo credits: 1-5 Dani Reyes Mozeson; 6 Tara Murray

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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On a mission to find public art in my Manhattan neighborhood, I hit Riverside Park yesterday afternoon. Here’s a sampling of what I found walking among the snow drifts — overlooking the Hudson River — from 72nd Street down to 59th Street:

Sukyung KimFlow 1 – Cascade

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Kate Jansyn, Fragment of an Angel

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Paola Morales, Thrive

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Lee Apt, Jubilation

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Jubiliation, in its entirety from another angle

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Ken Shih, Can Love Pervade Space? close-up of huge installation

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Accidental art

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Note: Images 1-6  — of the Model to Monument Program (M2M) — represent a collaboration between the Art Students League of New York and New York City Department of Parks & Recreation.

Photos by Lois Stavsky

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Last month, West Coast-based Kai Aspire was avidly gracing NYC streets with his earnest artworks. I had the opportunity to meet up with him then and pose a few questions:

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When and where did you first get up on a public surface?

I was 15 years old, and it was in LA.

What inspired you at the time?

My dad was a heavy smoker, and I was concerned about his health. The first work of art I created was to get his attention, and it did!

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Did you have any preferred surfaces back then?

The electrical boxes in LA were ideal!

Were you ever arrested?

Just as I was leaving a spot in Beverly Hills, a cop pulled a gun on me. He then handcuffed me and lay me on the floor. Six back-up cops came and made me remove everything that I put up. But they didn’t arrest me. They told me – somewhat apologetically — that they liked what I was doing!

How does your family feel about what you are doing?

They love it!  My mom gets a little scared sometimes. But she wants me to be happy, and she knows that what I am doing makes me happy.

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What percentage of your time is devoted to your art these days?

Just about all of it!

 Any other passions?

Surfing and soccer.

How do you feel about the movement of graffiti and street art into galleries?

It’s fine, so long as we don’t lose our touch with the streets. But my focus is on bringing the beauty of galleries onto the streets. That is why I pay so much attention to how my works are framed.

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What about the corporate world? Any feelings about working with it?

I try to avoid it.

Do you prefer working alone or collaborating with others?

It’s easier for me to work by myself, as I have a distinct vision as to how I want to present my artwork.

Have any particular cultures influenced your aesthetic?

My father’s French and growing up, I read French comics. And my mother’s Mexican heritage has most likely influenced the relief-work that I do. I love working with my hands.

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What is the riskiest thing you ever did?

Trying to get my message of reconciliation – love instead of hate — out in Hebron amidst gunshots, while hiding from the police. I was lucky to get out alive.

Yes! Hebron is definitely one of the world’s most conflict-ridden places. You’ve recently begun a world tour. Where else are you headed?

In addition to Hebron, I’ve been to Paris and Tel Aviv. Other stops include: West Palm Beach, Miami, LA, San Francisco, Bogota, New Zealand, Australia, Mexico and Brazil.

That’s quite ambitious! How do you feel about the role of the Internet in this scene?

It’s certainly interesting. It seems to blur the line between marketing and art, as it can give an artist a lot of exposure.

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Have you a formal art education?

I studied for one year at CalArts, the California Institute of the Arts, and then I learned the more practical aspects of art at ENSBA, Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

What inspires you these days?

Everyday life.

You obviously have a message you are interested in transmitting. 

Yes. Much of my work is a comment on our misplaced values.

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How has your work evolved in the past few years?

The process is more complex, and I use less sarcasm in getting my message across.

What do you see as the role of the artist in society?

To bring beauty to the world as he or she critiques it in a loving way.

That sounds good! Best of luck with your travels!

Interview conducted and edited by Lois Stavsky; Photo 2 by Lois Stavsky; all others courtesy of the artist.

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