Heritage Toronto has curated a cool Instagram account (graffitialley.to) that documents Toronto's Graffiti Alley. It works best on a phone, but it's OK on other screens if you don't mind turning your head 90 degrees. Read the rest
Macedonia's laws define vandalism as a misdemeanor which puts a limit on the jail time faced by participants in a political movement whose symbol is splashes of brightly colored paint. Read the rest
Banksy's iconic SWAT Van artwork goes up for auction at Bonhams next week. The piece first appeared in Banksy's infamous 2006 Los Angeles show Barely Legal. The hammer price is expected to hit US$300,000 - $450,000. From Bonhams:
Banksy's classic response to fear and tyranny is laughter and in the case of the present work the artist toys with his anti-establishment persona, ridiculing the police not just by depicting a scene in which heavily armed, faceless Special Forces agents are hoodwinked by a small boy but by doing so on the very apparatus of their strength. Banksy's best works combine vicious black humour with a clarity of message that many of the best advertisers would kill for and a rage that simply will not be ignored. His playfulness is the velvet glove that hides the iron fist of a social conscience honed on the streets of Bristol and which found its apotheosis in his breakout show Barely Legal in Los Angeles in 2006...
The present work was acquired directly from this exhibition and has remained in the same magnificent collection ever since, coming to the open market now for the first time. Despite the nature of the sculpture the condition is excellent and testament to the care with which the artist approaches even his most challenging works. This is a work that by the artist's own admission was first shown in a 'vandalised warehouse extravaganza' and yet it is worthy of any museum collection in the world.
Banksy's classic "taking the piss" essay (adapted from an essay by Sean Tejaratchi) is a moving, important screed about the colonization of public space by advertising.
The Zen Pencils illustrated version gives very welcome visual component to Banksy's words, reminding us that as articulate as Banksy might be, his real power is in the image.
My friend Jonathan Koshi created a series of striking graphite drawings of tagged doorways he encountered in Brussels, Rome, Florence, Paris, Amsterdam, and Copenhagan. The work can now be seen at San Francisco's Secession Art & Design gallery and online. Koshi says:
I've focused on the tension between art, graffiti, vandalism, and architecture. In this series, I question tagging as vandalism with architectural drawings of tagged doors. I employ classic pencil drawing technique to capture the details of the tags and surrounding architecture to create a work of art where vandalism becomes an essential component of the piece.
Last week, in a coordinated attack by guerrilla artists across the UK, 365 outdoor ads were replaced by hand-printed works of art. It was a project of Brandalism, and they hit 10 cities, using hi-viz vests and steely nerves as camouflage while they did their work. Read the rest
Bored Panda rounds up a gallery of street art that "interacts with its surroundings" -- a fancy way of saying that the artists incorporate found settings from cracks in cement to blooming trees into their work. It's positively delightful.