After an elementary school in Banksy’s hometown of Bristol named a building after him, the British street Artist responded in kind: he snuck onto the grounds and painted a sorta age-appropriate mural while the students and teachers were away on vacation. According to BBC reporter Jon Kay, a custodian first discovered the work and thought it was a random act of vandalism and “wanted to clean it off,” but then he found a handwritten note from Banksy. It read:
The head teacher at Bridge Farm Primary is reportedly happy the school was vandalized by Banksy and has no plans on buffing or selling it.
Fellow California Artists, Aaron De La Cruz and Sam Rodriguez, recently came together for a collaborative “untitled” art piece. It features their signature styles in a black-n-white canvas shown here in this timelapse clip of the process. “As mentioned before, we created this with no intention of an outlet other then to see how working together on a panting felt,” De La Cruz said of the piece.
Before artists such as Banksy and Shepard Fairey became household names, there were graffiti pioneers who were responsible for adding such things as the first ever crown or arrow to their moniker beginning the evolution of style.
Wall Writers: Graffiti in its Innocence is a documentary film and 350+ page companion book. Both film and book were conceived and directed by Roger Gastman. Legendary filmmaker John Waters narrates the documentary and the book’s forward is written by acclaimed artist Barry McGee.
Graffiti and street art today are largely considered the rock n’ roll of visual art, and Wall Writers is the story of its birth from Philadelphia and New York City during 1967 to 1973. Wall Writers is an exclusive account of the beginnings of the largest art movement of the Twentieth Century. No one has been able to tell this story until now, because no one could get complete access to the full cast of the movement’s originators featured in this film. Most of these artists have given their first ever on-camera interviews for this project. Wall Writers offers a once-in-a-lifetime look at the origin of graffiti and street art that continues to capture the imaginations of young people the world over.
Wall Writers explores graffiti’s eruption into the mainstreamsociety during a period of social turmoil in the late 1960s and early ‘70s, and takes a closer look not only at early graffiti’s place on the wall but its place in the culture of the time. Featuring unprecedented access to and exclusive interviews with graffiti’s originators CORNBREAD, TAKI 183, LSD OM, and more than a two-dozen others.Testimonies from journalists, historians and politicians who bore witness to the wall-writing revolution are also included in the film.
More comprehensive than anything on this subject, Wall Writers explores not only early graffiti writing itself but the writers creating it and the culture that drove them to write — be it a need to rebel against the government, to pass a message, or simply be recognized by society. The film’s exclusive interviews are coupled with rare photographs and archival footage, most of which have never been seen on screen before and serve as historical reference points as well as evidence of early graffiti that was buffed away decades ago.
From graffiti’s humble beginnings in 1967 to the first painting being sold in 1973, Wall Writers reveals the context of the start of a movement that would eventually grow to transform city life, public transit, public art, and ultimately visual art the world over.
Banksy’s anti-amusement park Dismaland has made headlines over the last month, but being that it’s located England, many of us are unable to see it for ourselves. Writer Sasha Bogojev, a writer from Arrested Motion, was one of the first to experience the park. He says: “The whole setting slams the weight of the world into your face… The intention was to make people uncomfortable, to the point where they actually have to deal with their feelings about certain issues, such as the immigration crisis, global warming, economy issues, etc.”
Australian surfer and South African native Craig Anderson is possibly one of the best things to happen to surfing in recent years, bringing an incomparable style and aesthetic every time he sets foot in the ocean. Desillusion Magazine editor in chief, Sebastien Zanella, spent a night following Craig, insomnia setting in, wandering on the east coast of New South Wales, Australia. “La Danse Macabre” is a short experimental film between nightmares and reality, fiction and dreams.
French Artist, Cécé recently completed this piece on the beach of Siouville-Hague, in France. This is what the Artist had to say about the piece: “I am forwarding a project that I’ve realized these days, made with paint and graffiti bomb on 3D pattern, the basic idea was to revitalize an abandoned place full of history: a world war 2 blockhaus, collapsed, almost lying on its side. At first it was about to humanize this place with some poetry: before, the eye of the soldiers were watching the dead coming from the sea, and now there is this big blue eye, looking at the life and moves coming from waves movements, talks and answers, interactions of two creations coming from man and nature.. and then also I’ve wanted to point out the damage that may make human at some sites (into the pupil, the silhouette of the nuclear power plant from la hague).”
NWA’s Straight Outta Compton re-imagined inside the world of Grand Theft Auto. Using clips from Grand Theft Auto V, the new four minute clip was created by video artist AnimalRobot. Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Eazy-E and the rest of the crew are all clearly reproduced in polygonal form, as are many of the hyperkinetic alleys and streets of Compton itself.
This recently unearthed BBC mini-documentary Watching My Name Go By from the mid-70s thoroughly chronicles the movement’s sprawling influence at the time, providing a broad spectrum of perspectives on its proliferation, some scathing, others inspired, but all tantamount to understanding the role graffiti played at pivotal moment in the city’s history, and how its influence has projected over the decades since. Lay your eyes upon Watching My Name Go By to experience the bombed-out baby photos of Hip-Hop, and the city that birthed it.
VICE heads to Japan to explore the sacred art of Japanese tattoo, sitting down with renowned Artist Horiyoshi the 3rd, a veteran tattooer from the Yokohama area of Japan. Horiyoshi specializes in full body tattoo suits, and discussed his line of work as well as his philosophies behind tattoo culture in this mini-documentary.
“We are all products of the chaos that surrounds us,” says Portuguese street Artist Alexandre Farto, aka Vhils, in André Santos’ film, which documents the indigenous village of Araçaí, Brazil. 90 Guaraní people were moved by the government at the turn of this century, displacing them from their ancestral lands. Immortalizing these forgotten people, Farto carves their portraits onto buildings and the doors of their homes, mixing indigenous and new techniques. Check the video above and stay tuned for more from Vhils.