Wednesday, 26 November 2014

grafitti in china

Check out this gorgeous plate:
courtesy of EDGE

 I would travel to China just to buy a set of these. 

The writer Matthew Nieder was has a wonderful post about the Meeting of Styles where the banks of the river were allowed to be graffed. 

And here is an article from 2008.  Appharently chinese collectors do not consider street art as investable.  Well they didn'tin Paris here either but now after 20 years of it in you face, a generation, things have changed.

In Taidong there is a whole block of graffed builsings that is part of an urban project, perhaps something like the mairie of the 13th arrondissemet in Paris
You can see more on Flikr

All I can say to the Chinese graffers is to keep at in.  In twenty years there will be a new generation of rich who will most likely be fighitng over your work.

Tastes change but Urban art is a world wide movement that can't be stopped.

Monday, 24 November 2014

W is for writer - Glossary of Grafitti

courtesy of WRDSMTH instragram
 Writers are graffers or as described on freegrafittisupplies: a practioner of writing, a grafitti artist.

Calling a graffer a grafitti artist boils my blood.  Like a practioner of writing is not a writer, or a practioner of sculpture is not a sculptor, painting/painter, illustrating/illustrator, et encore.  In France graffeur is commonly used, even on the tube.  The French, in general, have embraced grafitti and urban art.  Walk around Paris and you'll see that stores are tagging the sidewalks to pub their deals.

The word graffer is not yet in a dictionary because grafitti is taboo. 


Graffers are ghosts with hoodies who roam the urban sleepy hollows and leave their marks.  They don’t carry guns, but they carry bombs, of spray paint, paste-ups and more.  Urban writing is invisible by most, it's become so commonplace most people don't even notice it's there.  Some consider it vandalism, some of it is.  But some of it is pure art with no profit in mind and it is worldwide.

WRDSMTH works are a combination of pochoir and paste-up.  I assume Wrdsmth is male.  He writes that he’s doing time in Hollywood.  Wrdsmth is a poet graffer, a writing writer.  His pochoirs are a monochrome typewriter and the paste-ups are texts.  

See his Instagram page here: WRDSMTH  and his fabulous Tumblr page

Monday, 17 November 2014

abandoned metro stations in Paris

check out this video: Parisian rave party underground

Monday, 10 November 2014

P is for paste-up: glossary of grafitti

What's a paste-up?  Usually it's a peice of paper glued to an urban surface with wheat paste or wall paper glue.  Paste-ups are considered less offensive to the urban envirnoment because they can be peeled or washed off. 

Here is a video of paste-up interventions done by women in Brazil.  They have motive and means.

If you still don't understand paste-up, here are a helping ear and a mutant in Beaubourg.  That's the 'hood around the Pompidou center.

The Boss a paste-up, it's on the same wall, busy place.  Those posters might be advertising for underground Parisian rave party in abandoned metro stations or perhaps the catacombs.  We'll see about that next week.

Need the missing peice of the puzzle to understand what paste-ups are?  Here you go.

Motive and means: thanks Colin Smith for that great line.  I read it in your story in the comments on Janet Reid's blog.  I give you full credit.

Monday, 3 November 2014

artistic throwie paris 5th arrondisement

This  throwie is on the corner of rue Saint Jacques and rue des Feuillantines.  
To call it a throwie is not quite correct, but how did the artist paint those spots on the wall?  Surely with paint filled balloons.  Around town there are many wall painted buy this artist.  There's one in  Saint Germain des Prés.

But here above the Royal there is also stuck to the wall a mirror mosaic paste-up

Monday, 22 September 2014

H is for Heaven - glossary of graffiti

 High up on buildings and other spots, writers paint messages and tags.  The idea is to place their designs for maximum visibility, to increase their notoriety.  These peices are also hard to remove.

This one is one of my favorites.  

It’s on rue de Rennes.  How did they do it ?  Probably scaled down with climbing gear  and swung across the wall. The smiley mouth is about three meters across.

 Graffiti Heaven by Marita Hansen is worth reading.  It's harsh.

Check out what’s on tumblr under graffiti heaven spot.  You can see it’s extremey dangerous to tag these spots.  Crews of writers use climbing equipment to dangle and spray their works.  Some hang on with one hand over highways.

Writers can fall and die, thus go to heaven.

Here is an imformative video about graffiti art called Heaven Spot.  Why do writers do it?  Not for money.

In Portland they consider this a problem.  One of the graffiti removers talks about it.

Contrary to Portland, Paris embraces street art.  Even stores are using it as publicity to tell us about their back to school sales.

The store is just ahead.  Their logo is in the heaven of the hopscotch game.

Heaven is part of my upcoming book.

But in Paris though there is a tolerance, I wouldn't say they condone tag runs and acid writing.

Here's another tag in heaven.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

A is for Acid

Acid etches glass.  

What kind of acid? 


Gee, what would it be like to come to work and see this on your window?  Nothing can remove it, just replace the glass.  Freakin expensive.  

Here is an article on Worksafe about the risks of using hydroflouric acid to tag.  Watch your skin,  your lungs, etching goes on for days.  There are other products one can use.  Check out art supply stores.  

Is this vandalism?

Tags like this are everywhere but we sort of don't see them; they are on phone booths, mail boxes, subway windows, you name it.

Here is an article in the NY times dating from 2006 about acid tag-etching in the metro.

Paris is the place for street art: read it here on Bloomberg