Street Art

2019 Nuart Festival Recap

“There is some kind of paradoxes at work here, you want to preserve graffiti as something wild and not institutionalized, but at the same time see the creativity within it,” says Malcolm Jacobson, of Stockholm University’s Sociology Department, in the recap film for Nuart Festival’s 19th edition. “I think Nuart has been very good at keeping on that edge and balance.” The famed festival, a titan in its field, conducted this year’s annual event September 5-8th at its home location of Stavanger, N

Building A Bridge In A Divided Community Amid Spike In Tourism Industry

Mural festivals are a powerful force in today’s artistic era. They can be divisive or unifying, because street art is a facet of placemaking, a sort of ‘face’ each community presents to its residents and visitors. As such, concrete mission statements from festivals must guide this force, and those missions determine a community’s tone. Akumal Arts Festival, hosted in the traditionally sleepy, coastal community of Akumal, Mexico, is a joint effort by transplants and native residents to recapture

Life in 3-D: Savior ElMundo

I hadn’t seen Savior ElMundo since the day of the UP Launch, so I knew our last conversation was on June 20th, 2019, exactly. When we made plans to meet, he directed me to enter La Esquina on Kenmare Street, and to “tell the guy at the front” that I was meeting him downstairs. Perpetually twitchy in the face of uncertainty, I entered the restaurant on a mid-October evening and loudly asked the girl behind the counter where “downstairs” was. She directed me to a nondescript steel door. Through t

“Waiting”: A Mural By Artez In La Bañeza, Spain

Earlier this week, while reporting on the collaborative mural ‘Where’s Wally’ in Sacramento, California, I noted how murals stand apart from other art forms due to their public nature, and the integral roles they play within their surrounding communities. With his latest mural in La Bañeza, Spain, titled “Waiting,” Serbian street artist Artez pays homage to a specific aspect of this characteristic: the impermanence of outdoor art. In a statement for the mural, Artez writes that, “There are many

‘Where’s Wally’ A Collaboration from Axel Void, Emilio Cerezo, Ivan Floró & Alberto Montes

Muralism derives its distinction as an art form from its lack of isolation. Rather than facing the confines of a canvas, which can receive the same perception regardless of its placement, a mural is rooted in its spot. Its size and position within the face of a community makes it a unique aspect of that locale. When international artists travel the world, building a resumé of walls across the globe, it can be easy for each work to feel like mere notches in their bedposts. With their collaboratio

A Mural On Co-existence & Common Humanity By Sebas Velasco & Axel Void

Spanish artist Sebastian Velasco and Miami-based artist Axel Void recently achieved a new chapter in their ongoing creative relationship with their latest collaboration for Mural Fest Kosovo. Their piece, titled ZOGJTE (Birds) can be found on two massive facades in the Balkan nation’s principal city of Ferizaj. Highlighting both of the artists’ technical prowess and proclivities in subject matter, ZOGJTE pays tribute to the country’s storied history through the lens of the nomadic Roma people.

Jad El Khoury’s curtains Adorn An Abandoned Building In Stavanger With A Message Of Hope

Earlier this spring, we were taken with the work of Lebanese artist Jad El Khoury, who completed his both ideologically and technically amazing street art installation, Burj El Hawa, otherwise known as the Tower of Wind. Nuart Festival Founder and Director Martyn Reed called this feat “a standout work leagues ahead of anything else,” and the festival subsequently named El Khoury their artist in residence. El Khoury also received the Arte Laguna Prize for this work, which focuses on the healing

An Artist Survival Guide

Even in my adolescent anticipation of moving to New York to become a writer, I knew there would be struggle involved. I wore this awareness proudly, bragging to my friends that any measure would prove worthwhile if it meant that I was living a meaningful life rather than selling out to some bland career I felt lukewarm about at best. I imagined a sparse apartment like Holly Golightly’s and began walking to school to condition myself for the city’s brisk pace. “I’ll only eat two apples a day,” I

Beholders: A Timely Look At The Ongoing Migrant Crisis By Jofre Oliveras

When I took World Cultures in 10th Grade, my teacher, a steely yet lovable cynic who could provoke laughter and the fear of God in the span of a sentence, sagely told us, “the human race will not get along until aliens come to Earth.” Straightforward enough, I thought. People fought, I knew this. My parents watched the news with dinner. When I graduated high school and left my town for New York City, I came to understand this concept so much more profoundly, more intimately. Tribe mentality was

REWILD By Escif: A Rewind Symbol To Reconnect With And Respect The Earth

Spanish artist ESCIF has teamed up with cultural initiative Splash and Burn, curated by Lithuanian artist Ernest Zacharevic and coordinated by Charlotte Pyatt, for their latest endeavor, titled REWILD. This ambitious, multifaceted project is centered around a stunning land intervention, supplemented by murals, and culminating with a short film. The entire project is inspired by “the upcoming UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, reflecting on the warning that we have just 12 years before climate c

IPAF’s 8th Edition Concluded In Martinique July 2019

Christopher Columbus discovered the island of Martinique on behalf of Europe during his fourth voyage in 1502. Encyclopedia Britannica writes that it was at this time that the island received its current name, which “is probably a corruption of the Indian name Madiana (“Island of Flowers”) or Madinina (“Fertile Island with Luxuriant Vegetation”), as reputedly told to Christopher Columbus by the Caribs.” The changing of this unwitting island’s name signified the greater cultural shifts that woul

Kai Aspires to Keep it Real

I couldn’t find the PDF invitation to CONTEXT Art Fair during Art Basel. T.K. and I stood at the pavilion’s VIP entrance while the guest services director scrolled through my email incredulously. “It’s there, I swear,” I urged her, smiling sidelong at the security guard who’d inspected my purse moments before. When we finally gained access to the fair’s booths, I took special measures to hold my collarbone broad, chin parallel to the floor. It was my first time at Art Basel, my first time in Mi

Conversations with a Chat Girl: Orange Li

I am no stranger to esoteric discussions with artists. My staunch belief in the law of attraction enables many interviews to veer off course into a familiar territory, comparing the numerous coincidental moments of serendipity that come to shape our mere existences into lives. Though I was acquainted with Orange Li’s remarkable narrative from attending her sold out show, Diary of a Chat Girl, at B[x] spaces in October, nothing could have prepared me for the deep conversation we would share in th

Recap Of Casalabate Street Summer Festival In Lecce, Italy

Lecce, Italy boasts multi-faceted points of fame. Known for its agricultural exports, the capitol metropolis is also renowned for its limestone. As a result, Lecce features an astonishing amount of Baroque sculpture and architecture, “marked by heavy building speculation that began in the 1970s,” for which it is commonly referred to as “the Florence of the South.” Last month, Lecce built upon this artistic tradition, and “returned its soul to its most authentic vocation” with the first edition o

First large-scale installation By Dourone In Angelholm, Sweden

Earlier this month, Spanish street art duo Dourone completed their first large-scale project in Sweden. Located in the city of Angelholm, their mural, titled “LITA 00 :00,02,” appears to be the next step in their ‘Space-time H’ series, which the pair initiated in December 2018. In a statement, the artists explain that this piece “is part of the record that the artist is developing and talks about the consolidation and fragmentation using time as the basis in the 21st century through the female f

Mural By Artez for Urban Vision Festival in Acquapendente, Italy

At the beginning of July, as summer crescendoed into its critical mass of long days bursting with life, residents, visitors, and artists in Acquapendente, Italy gathered for the fourth edition of UV Collective’s Urban Vision Festival. The event, hosted in this agriculturally-minded city situated in the northern region of Viterbo, has hosted an esteemed roster of international artists including Fintan Magee, Bosoletti, and Helen Bur over the course of its existence. This year, Serbian street arti

Opening Lines: Connecting 2 Groups Of 5th Graders Living 7000 Miles Apart

One Blue Sky, a new educational project launched by Laura Rodgers of The Good Works Foundation, has officially completed its first endeavor, titled “Opening Lines” with the help of Michigan-based street artist Pat Perry and Samantha Robinson of aptART. As we reported in May, a statement from the One Blue Sky staff explains that “through the power of technology, the project introduces two groups of children living in markedly different places and provides them with a platform to interact.” “Open

Above the Clouds By Artez in Belgrade, Serbia

I do a lot of writing at Hotel Indigo on New York’s Lower East Side. The snacks are too expensive to even consider purchasing, but there’s free strawberry lemonade and the air that streams through the vents smells purposely perfumed. One night, walking home from an especially harrowing battle with a blank page, I turned my eyes to the sky. After completing this particular walk countless times over the past few months, I noticed an illuminated mural on top of a tall building for the first time. I

Recap Of The Second Edition of Underground Mural Project at Ink Block

July marks the completion of the second iteration of the Underground Mural Project at Ink Block in Boston’s South End. The event was curated by Street Theory, an entity powered by Boston-based development firm National Development. A recap issued by the organization calls Ink Block “Boston’s only outdoor street art gallery.” The project’s website explains that “Underground at Ink Block is the successful transformation of an 8-acre underpass located between Boston’s South End and South Boston ne

Conflicting Forces Within A Rapidly Changing Lynn

In January 2019, we ran an article highlighting the role that street art can play in aiding the nefarious forces of gentrification, oftentimes set into action by greedy corporate land developers. We told this story specifically through a lens focused on the role that the new Beyond Walls mural festival has played in a rapidly transforming Lynn, Massachusetts. This article, admittedly, focused quite heavily on rhetoric from citizens who oppose the wealth beginning to trickle into Lynn, and by ext
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