Graffiti

For over two decades, Jersey City-based WOOLPUNK®  has been fashioning art that is at once visually captivating and socially stirring. Working largely with recycled textiles, found objects, photographs, and text-based imagery, she addresses such issues as environment endangerment, economic inequality and homelessness. Within the past year, her rich and inventive creations have made their way into a diverse range of sites including the World Trade Center, Bergdorf Goodman, and FIT’s Art and Design Gallery.

Currently on view at the Montclair Art Museum is WOOLPUNK®’s hugely impressive Sunflowers & Graffiti’d Sky in the Garden State. Based on a photograph of a community garden in Jersey City, the final production, 30 feet wide x 13 feet long, features recycled textiles on an embroidered photo. All of the materials used — clothing, fabric scraps and assorted textiles — were donated in response to the artist’s open call to the MAM community. And anything that wasn’t used was then donated to the Salvation Army.

Sunflowers & Graffiti’d Sky in the Garden State brilliantly brings attention to landfill waste that is comprised largely of clothing while questioning our penchant for the newest fashion trends. Featured above is the artist in front of her work. Several close-ups from Sunflowers & Graffiti’d Sky follow:

A small segment

The graffiti’d sky — which while beautiful, also “reminds us of the air-polluted sunsets”

More sunflowers

A closer look at the details

Sunflowers & Graffiti’d Sky in the Garden State remains on view through August 6, 2023. Located at 3 S Mountain Ave in Montclair, NJ, the Montclair Art Museum is open Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Photos 1-4, Lois Stavsky; 5, Courtesy of the artist

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Brooklyn Art Haus aka BAH! — a new hugely impressive home for innovative artworks and events in Williamsburg, Brooklyn that will officially open in January — debuts tomorrow evening, September 9, from 6-9pm with RAWTHENTIC. Curated by Silvertuna Studios and Collect with Lulu, the premier exhibition and event features a diverse array of contemporary urban artworks by legendary artists Chris RWK, Al Diaz, de la Haba, Kit 17, Easy, Zimad and Nite Owl, along with video presentations — filmed by Silvertuna Studios — of the artists at work. Also on view will be the distinctly unique Vanderhall Carmel GTS custom-designed and hand-painted by the artists.

A small selection of images from the dynamic, brilliantly curated exhibition follows:

Chris RWK, “Built For This,” Mixed media on canvas, 24″ x 24″

Al Diaz, “For The Haters,”  Mixed media on wood, 24″ x 34″

Gregory de la Haba, Straight Red Threes, Oil, krink, and spray paint on printed canvas, 78″ x 44″

Kit 17, “Subway Days Burner,” Mixed media on canvas, 63″ X 113″

Easy, (Right)  Bronze & Gold Tag Cut Outs on Wood, 24″ x 24″ and below them, “Steel,” Mixed media on canvas, 48″ x 48″

Zimad,Area 51″, Mixed media on unstretched canvas, 83″ x 82″

And Nite Owl, pictured below with exhibition information —

The exhibition continues through September 16 from 1 pm to 5 pm. Private viewings are available by appointment. Guests can RSVP here.

Note: Be sure to check out the exhibition catalog for bios, prices and more!

Photos of artworks,  2-7,  Lois Stavsky

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Wildly passionate and distinctly knowledgeable about about sticker art, DC-based iwillnot has published two celebrated books and has curated five extraordinarily impressive expos on the theme. On my recent visit to DC, I had the opportunity to pose a few questions to him and catch up a bit:

Since you first introduced me to the DC street art sticker scene about 14 years ago, your contributions to the culture have been enormous — expos, books, giveaways and more. What is it about stickers that appeal to you?

I love that they are a quick and easy way to get a message — or simply your name — out there.

Can you tell us something about your name — “iwillnot?”  When did you acquire it? And why did you choose it?

I began using iwillnot in 2009. It was a statement of defiance and opposition. I didn’t like what was happening around me. I could not support the direction DC was taking, particularly in terms of its gentrification. And I wasn’t happy with the way my neighborhood was evolving in the name of renovation and development.

You had been pasting, collecting and trading stickers for several years before you conceived of curating your first Street Sticker EXPO at The Fridge DC. What motivated you to launch such a huge project?

It was a natural progression. I, myself, already had amassed a huge collection, and I knew many active sticker artists out there. It was a way to share the art form that I love with so many others and to introduce these artists to a wider audience. Also, the streets in DC had become less hospitable to stickers.

How did you initially get the word out?  Over a thousand artists have participated in your Sticker Expos.

At first it was largely word-of-mouth. We were a pretty tight group, Skam, RWK, V0xx Romana…and more. And social media, mainly Instagram and my website, are essential to getting the word out.

Your most recent Street Sticker EXPO took place during the pandemic. Did that present any distinct challenges?

Yes. It was stressful. Among the challenges was receiving and opening packages of stickers while we were all concerned with becoming infected with COVID-19…Just storing the boxes until we opened them was problematic!

Your second book, Unsmashed, features over 1200 colored photographs of stand-alone stickers from artists across the globe. How did you select which stickers to include? 

I took one sticker from each pack that I had received for the 2020 Expo. Each of these stickers was then photographed by fellow sticker artist Cheer Up, who also did the layout and design for the book.  It evolved into the ideal field guide that can easily connect anyone to the sticker art community.

Yes! It is perfect! What’s ahead?

SMASHED 2.0 is underway. It will cover the last two EXPOs, the showings at the 2020 Outsider Art Fair and Tribeca Art Night in NYC, the execution of the collage portrait and the phenomenon of sticker shows around the world.

What about EXPOs? Any ahead?

In 2023, we will celebrate our 10-year anniversary.

Congratulations! I’m looking forward to that!

Note: Be sure to check out iwillnot’s website to purchase his books and assorted merchandise. And if you’d like to receive a free sticker pack, fill out the form on this page!

All photos courtesy iwillnot; photo 2 features El Toro and Chris RWK collaboration; photo 4 – a collaboration with Mr. Zimbro

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In this fourth post of our new series, PUSHING IT FORWARD — featuring ILLicit creatives claiming space on NYC streets — our focus now is on the streets of Staten Island. Widely overlooked by graffiti and street art aficionados, the blocks on and off Bay Street in Stapleton host an infectious range of both sanctioned and unsanctioned images fashioned by local artists and by those from neighboring boroughs. Featured above are the markings of the prolific Pöe. Several more photos of ILLicit public works recently captured in Staten Island follow:

Coe, KGB

Dechead

Par, NS

Over

Rik, Viloe and Osi

Poke

Post and photos by the Pushing It Forward Collective

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Currently on view at Underhill Walls in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn is a delightfully nostalgic trip down TV’s memory lane.  In the murals featured above, accolades are given to The Sopranos by Paolo Tolentino, while Subway Doodle honors Battlestar Galactica. Several more images from Underhill Walls‘ current iteration follow:

Multi-media artist Sage Gallon pays homage to “The Sonny and Cher Show” for its “talent and variety”

Painter and muralist Jessie Novik celebrates “I Love Lucy”

Artist and arts educator Carnivorous Flora recreates “The Partridge Family” as “little people with a bus rolling out the red carpet to Ukrainian refugees and welcoming them to NYC!”

Tattoo artist and designer DozenFingers Graphics celebrates the animated television series “Sonic the Hedgehog”

 Muralist and illustrator Miki Mu adds the final touches to her playful ode to “Sesame Street”

Visual artist and poet Android Oi — in collaboration with painter and illustrator Melissa Schainker — celebrates “Mork & Mindy,” (with project coordinator Jeff Beler standing to his right).

Founded and curated by Jeff Beler, Underhill Walls is a non-profit public art installation located at the corner of St. Johns Place and Underhill Avenue in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn,

Photos: Lois Stavsky

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Earlier this summer, several members of the OTM Graff Crew brought their spectacular skills to Bushwick, where they fashioned their distinctly impressive rendition of  Jurassic World Dominion. Featured above are the talents of Cortes and Scope against a background created by Cortes, Meres, Albertus Joseph and Topaz. Several more images captured from the huge production follow:

Cortes against collaborative background, closer-up

Meres, 5Pointz founder, who spearheaded this production

Austin, Texas-based Sloke One

Close-up  from collaborative background 

NYC-based Image

Boston-bred Qwizm

NYC-based Geobany

Photos: Lois Stavsky

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In this third post of our new series, PUSHING IT FORWARD — featuring ILLicit creatives claiming space on NYC streets — our focus now is on those images we’ve seen in the Bronx. Considered by many as the birthplace of graffiti back in the 70’s, the Bronx continues to host a multitude of unsanctioned markings. The character pictured above was fashioned by the itinerant Z-Bird. Several more photos of ILLicit public works recently captured in the Bronx follow:

FS TMR, RB OQB, BL WDD and DEN FTR

Jigl

Text and Cous

MFK

Reboe LNE

South LNE

Post and photos by the Pushing It Forward Collective

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In this second of our new series, PUSHING IT FORWARD — featuring ILLicit creatives claiming space on NYC streets — our focus now is on those images we’ve seen in Brooklyn. Pictured above is GTAR, MFK. Several more photos recently captured from the streets of New York City’s most populous borough follow:

Uwont and Ruinr

ZigZag and Wombat

Erup and Spray

Ethel and King Baby

Unidentified

Desa

Post and photos by the Pushing It Forward Collective

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Curated by COPE2, “Subway Art Legends,” a dynamic mix of artworks created by those icons who “rocked the trains” during the subway era of the early 80’s, continues through Tuesday at One Art Space in Tribeca. The tantalizing image featured above, China Red N.Y.C, was fashioned by the legendary Delta2 with acrylic, spray paint and paint markers. Several more infectiously rhythmic works on exhibit follow:

Bronx native TKid 170, “Old School,” Circa 1989, Redo of a classic

 Brooklyn native Dome, “NYC Subway Panel,” Enamel on metal

Bronx native Bom5, “Graffiti,”  36 x 24 in.

 Manhattan-native Part TDS, “Delta Blue,” Multimedia canvas, 12 x 16 in.

Bronx native and “Subway Art Legends” curator Cope2, “Salsa,”  36 x 36 in.

 London-native Wane One, “KNOWS,” 24 x 48 in.

Located at 23 Warren Street in Tribeca, One Art Space is open daily 1-6pm.

Photos of artworks, Lois Stavsky

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Yesterday afternoon, James Top Productions brought live painting, art vendors and a host of performances to Jackie Robinson Park in West Harlem. Despite the intermittent rain, the infectious positive energy was palatable from blocks away. Featured above is Queens-based writer and illustrator Topaz, standing alongside his iconic character.

Veteran graffiti artist and painter Wore One alongside his masterly-fashioned hip-hop character

Moving solo to the beats in front of King Bee’s iconic bee

The prolific, gifted New Jersey-based artist Will Power and his portrait of the late “King of Style” Case 2 aka Kase2

And just hanging–as the day wraps up: Vision, Will Power, Eric Orr and Jerry Maze

Photos: Lois Stavsky

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