Explore The History of Graffiti and Street Art At Beyond The Streets NYC!

Art By CES
Art By CES, AKA Robert Provenzano (All Photos By Gail)

Do you like Street Art? I Sure do. Whether you’re already an avid fan of street art, or are just curious about, and open to, getting schooled on the evolution of this rather phenomenal genre of pop culture, you have through the final weekend in September to immerse yourself in an ambitious, but temporary, street art museum called Beyond the Streets.

Spray Paint Cans in Elevator
Spray Paint Cans Wallpaper Inside The Elevator

Sculpture By TENGAone
Paintings and Sculpture By TENGAone

Spanning two full floors in a newly-constructed high rise office building on the waterfront in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (the views alone are worth the price of admission) Beyond The Streets is a celebration of society’s most pervasive mark makers and rule breakers with unprecedented purpose and scale; inside these walls you will find a collection of stories and works by artists past and present who have helped to propel graffiti and street art to extraordinary heights.

Storefront Mural Photos By Jim Prigoff
Storefront Mural Photos By Jim Prigoff

Installation View
Installation View

View 3
Here’s One Of Those Views I Mentioned

Beyond The Streets explores the collective urgency of using the street as a canvas for expression, and while the subject matter varies and the mediums are many, it is in the public sphere where these messages find a home.

Graffiti Mural

The story starts more than 50 years ago, in the mid to late 1960s, when the contemporary concept of graffiti took shape in the streets of New York and Philadelphia. Disenfranchised youth, inspired equally from boredom and ego, started scrawling their names and monikers everywhere, spawning copycats and competition.

Subway Car Graffiti Photos By Henry Chalfant
Subway Car Graffiti Photos By Henry Chalfant

These early acts of letter-based marks, created in both marker and spray paint, became monumental when repeated on a global scale.

Death of Graffiti 3 By Lady Pink
Death of Graffiti 3 By Lady Pink

People have long taken to the streets to share a name, phrase, image or cause with the world around them to force a public discourse. Streets act as the symbolically important public stage that is both local and universal, the bedrock for both public protest and anonymous action.

Mural By Lee Quinones
Soul Train Mural By Lee Quinones

The streets also act as a tool for civic engagement and activism, and Beyond The Streets includes figures who have used their art to unite the oppressed around a common cause. As it is so often said, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” and simple gestures in public spaces can quickly galvanize a movement, raising awareness of an issue and resulting in change.

Keith Haring and JMB
Keith Haring With His Artwork Plus Decorated Leather Jacket, and Drawings by Jean-Michel Basquiat

For some, the streets were a starting point to evolve their message and style. Pushing their craft in figurative, illustrative, realist or abstract directions, they turned their energy and experience toward more traditional settings. For others, graffiti was never an origin, but an inspiration. Elements of graffiti and street art can be found across music, fashion and contemporary art, all helping this culture to proliferate further.

Beastie Boys Logo By Cey Adams
Beastie Boys Logo By Cey Adams

Beastie Boys Installation

The Beasties Boys have multiple galleries dedicated to their music, memorabilia and hip hop legacy. If you’re a fan, you won’t want to miss it!

Beastie Boys 1984 By Josh Cheuse
Pboto of The Beastie Boys Circa 1984 By Josh Cheuse

Beyond The Streets affirms a truth that cannot be overstated: Graffiti and Street Art would not have become what they have without New York City! Let’s take a look at a selection of the thousands of pieces of art — including sculptures, paintings, posters, flyers, installations, photography, and other ephemera that you’ll see in this fantastic exhibit!

Photos By Maripol
Photos By Maripol

Art By Crash
Art By John “CRASH” Matos

Art By Rammellzee
Art By Rammellzee

Lynzy and Art Fans

Friendly docent Lynzy gently reminds a pair of enthusiastic young ones that there is no touching of the art!

Installation View
Installation View

Art By Daze
Daily Commute (Left) and The Four Seasons (Right) by Chris “DAZE” Ellis

Maya Hayuk Fuck Mural
Fuck Mural By Maya Hayuk

Kenny Scharf Sculpture and Mural
Kenny Scharf’s Totemtiki Kinetic Sculpture and Mural

View 1
Let’s Take a Break to Check Out That View Again!

Hip Hop Flyers By Buddy Esquire
Hip Hop Flyers By Buddy Esquire

Magic Touch By Bert Krak and Alexis Ross

Check out this crazy thing: the Magic Touch Porch Tattoo Parlor installation by Bert Krak and Alexis Ross. So cool!

Magic Touch

Untitled Polaroid By Dash Snow
Untitled Polaroid By Dash Snow

Model Train Freight Car Graffiti
Model Train Examples of Freight Train Car Graffiti

Assorted Posters
Assorted Posters

Installation By DABSMYLA
Flower-Themed Art Installation By The Husband and Wife Team Known As DABSMYLA

Art By Andre Saraiva

Art Above and Below By André Saraiva.

Art By Andre Saraiva

Lynzys Manicure By Andre
Also By André: Lynzy’s Manicure!

Art By Cleon Peterson
Art By Cleon Peterson

Art By Craig Costello
Art By Craig Costello

Fan The Flames By Shepard Fairey
Fan The Flames By Shepard Fairey

The politically-themed art of Shepard Fairey gets a huge amount of space in the exhibit (see below). All his stuff is great.

Art By Shepard Fairey

Trash Records Pop Up Record Store
Trash Records Pop Up Record Store, Exterior

Trash Records Pop Up Record Store
Trash Records Pop Up Record Store, Interior

Installation View
Installation View

Installation View
Installation View

Beyond the Streets is all kinds of crazy fun, and there is so much more on display than what I’ve had room for here. We spent close to three hours exploring the exhibit, just taking our time and looking at everything, but you could easily make a full afternoon of it if you really wanted to read all the stories and take a ton of selfies (there are many excellent selfie opportunities that I didn’t cover here, but trust me that the exhibit is infinitely Instagram-able). I’d suggest allowing a minimum of two and one-half hours inside the exhibit. Plan your visit now!

Beyond the Streets Runs Through September 29th, 2019 and is Located at 25 Kent Avenue, Williamsburg, Brooklyn NY (Take the L Train to the Bedford Stop and Walk about 10 Minutes). Tickets are $25 for Adults and Kids Over 12, $11 for Kids Aged 6 to 11, and Free for Kids Aged 5 and Under. Visit This Link For More Information Such as Hours, Discounts, and to Purchase Tickets! 

Art By Faile

Art Above and Below By Faile (Patrick McNeil and Patrick Miller)

Art By Faile

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Modern Art Monday Presents: Augustina Woodgate, National Times

Augustina Woodgate National Times
All Photos By Gail

National Times (2016 / 2019) by Augustina Woodgate (b. 1981) is a closed-circuit network of clocks synchronized directly by the power grid. Since the Industrial Revolution, schools, factories, hospitals, and offices have used this kind of network architecture — referred to as a “master/slave” configuration — to keep consistent time.

National Times

A single digital master clock sends power signals to a series of analog slave clocks, commanding synchronized measure across an entire institution. The master keeps steady time based on a pulse    transmitted directly from the local power grid, whose frequency is aligned with the atomic clock at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which establishes official United States time.

National Times

Here, the hands of the slave clocks have been outfitted with sand paper. As National Times progresses, the minute hands of the slave clock scrape away the numerals on their faces until they are completely erased. Conditioned by the current state of labor and power, the slave clocks progressively erode their functional value, collectively reclaiming autonomy in the process of disintegration.

National Times
National Times, Installation View

Photographed as Part of the 2019 Biennial Exhibit at The Whitney Museum in NYC

Pink Thing Of The Day: Barbie’s Magical Motor Home

Barbies Magical Motor Home
Photo By Gail

Have you heard the expression, “I want to be Barbie, because the bitch has everything!” It is so true, and one of her prize possessions is a Pink Motor Home which is, in fact, a bit magical. Barbie’s Magical Motor Home is somewhat like a Transformer, in that converts from its van-like original form into both a sporty Jeep (for off-roading activity) and a “luxury home” for glamping! Barbie’s Motor Home has evolved over the years but this one is circa 1990 and currently sells on eBay and similar collectors’ auction sites for hundreds of dollars.

Photographed as part of Trenton Doyle Hancock’s Mind of The Mound: Critical Mass, on View Through October 31st, 2019 at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA.

Warriors of The Apocalypse Series By Brian Sperry

Five Robot Mannequins
All Photos By Gail

Chicago is a fabulous city and home to one of the most beautifully curated art museums (The Art Institute) in the world. That said, it definitely does not enjoy a socially vibrant art scene that is equivalent to that of NYC — with its vast number of galleries in Chelsea, the LES, Midtown and Uptown. While the NYC art scene hosts a weekly (Thursday) night of opening receptions in galleries across the city, Chicago has one such evening per month, which is called Second Friday. Taking place in the Chicago Arts District (also known as Pilsen) Second Fridays Gallery Night is a monthly evening of opening receptions at the galleries and artists’ studios along South Halsted Street. If you’re a tourist and have the chance to attend Second Fridays only once, the one studio you must absolutely must not miss is House of The Apocalypse.

Four Warrior Mannequins

More of a studio showcase than a traditional gallery, House of The Apocalypse is where you’ll find an impressive and visually engaging collection of wildly embellished Sci-Fi-themed, mannequin-based sculptures known as the Warriors of the Apocalypse, which are designed and compiled from found objects by artist and gallery owner Brian Sperry.

Chrome Robot Mannequins

The Warriors have a backstory, courtesy of Sperry, as follows:

The year is 3095, a post-apocalyptic world. Man and machine unite to form a hybrid super soldier to fight against tyranny and oppression perpetrated by governments, corporations, and banks that have destroyed the planet. The Warriors spread truth and light in a futuristic world where humanity is fighting to survive. In the darkness, we are light. We will stand and fight. We are the Warriors of the Apocalypse!

Mohawk Mannequin

Sperry also offers his Artist’s Statement:

The visual elements of my figurative sculptures takes abstract human forms and gives them an acid bath in the surreal. The compositions attempts to displace the viewer and prompt them to question their own cognitive dissonance that is a pervasive part of what is destroying our society. The reconceptualization of mechanical found objects and the human form exudes hybridism and trans-humanism, the next wave of human evolution

Pink and Yellow Warrior

This juxtaposition of objects and the body attempts to give the viewer an interactive experience and encouragement to take a stand against imperialist scum who are determined to act as slave masters over the entire planet. Each figure is a Warrior embodying specific aspects of the spirit of revolt against the system. My work can me summed up in one slogan: Death to Tyranny!

Four Warriors

House of The Apocalypse is located at 1908 South Halsted Street, Chicago. It is open to the public every Second Friday of the month from 6-10 PM and by appointment. A suggested donation of a few dollars is requested to photograph the sculptures. Worth it.

Seven Mannequins

Eye On Design: Meat Dress By Jeremy Scott

Meat Dress By Jeremy Scott
Photos By Gail

Even if you weren’t watching the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards at the time of its broadcast, everyone remembers at least hearing about Lady Gaga’s controversial dress made of raw beef, which was commonly referred to by the media as The Meat Dress, by designer Franc Fernandez. That dress was one-of-a-kind, but did you know that another designer, Jeremy Scott, made an entire line of meat inspired couture? Yes, it’s true. This form-flattering dress — with it’s jewel neckline and elbow-length sleeves — comes from Scott’s Spring / Summer 2011 collection and appears to be fashioned from prosciutto, but it’s actually just pink and white printed latex. I love it.

Photographed as Part of the Exhibit Camp: Notes on Fashion at the Met, Which Closed on September 8th, 2019.

Meat Dress By Jeremy Scott
Meat Dress Installation View

Photo Highlights From NY Now, Summer 2019!


Vitra Booth Display (All Photos By Gail)

Do you like shopping? I sure do. Imagine that you own a store, maybe one that sells neat things like those you find on this blog, and you had to shop for cool inventory to sell in your store. Where would you go to find those neat things? Well, one place you can go for your one-stop shop shopping is the Retail Renaissance NY Now wholesale gift trade show, which features thousands of handmade, home, and lifestyle gift items  all under one roof. NY Now takes place at the Javits Center twice annually, in the winter and summer, and it gets exponentially better with each passing seasonal edition. I always have a fun time at NY Now, but the Summer show that just happened in August was mind-blowingly great. Really. Wow.

Vase Display With Protea

I tend not to recap my visits to NY Now because it’s massive, and I just end up blogging about a handful of the coolest items spotted on the show floor. But because I had so many great photos this time, I feel compelled to share them with you. Don’t expect much commentary, because this post is mainly about taking you on a little visual journey, but if you have questions about anything in this piece please speak up in the comments and I’ll be sure to address your inquiries!

Pink Venus Demilo

Glazed ceramic Pink Venus Demilo Statue. Yes, Please!

Humorous Coffee Mugs

Exhibitors flaunting their Humorous-Saying Coffee Mugs can be found around the show floor in abundance.

Mugs of Famous People

Or maybe, rather than a snarky-saying-emblazoned mug, you prefer a mug with the mug of a famous person on it? Well, here you go then: check out these awesome designs by The Found, Gifts and More!

Cat Dishes

The Cat Pals Collection by Miya Japanese Tableware features assorted Cat-Shaped Dishes with cats on them. These make the purrfect gift for the cat fancier who has other cat-shaped stuff with cats on it, but not this exact stuff.

Greeting Card

Who else besides me can totally relate to this funny greeting card from Pretty Alright Goods?  #SleepingRules!

Love Bubby Onesie

“Speaker of The House” — HAHA! Check out this hilarious Baby Onesie by Love Bubby, a brand that is unique because everything they design is unisex and is available only in the colors Black, White and Gray. Clothes for the modern baby! Yay!

Illuminated Bunny

This is no mere six-feet high Illuminated Bunny Lamp:  Meet Miffy, the Dutch storybook-character-turned-pop-culture-icon, created by Dick Bruna. You know you want to own him.

Tea Towels from Mexico

Do you enjoy being bilingual? Then you might want to own these fun and colorful Tea Towels by Valentine Viannay that help to augment your Spanish vocabulary while you wipe your hands or dry your dishes! #Multitasking!

Frida Kahlo

If you dig the late Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, you can find her  lovely image on everything including jewelry, bags, pouches, scarves, ornaments, mugs and so much more. Frida Lives!

Beaded Flamingos

These fabulous beaded Flamngoes, Palm Tree and Penguin are from Beadworx by Extol Accessories, Ltd. I wanted to use the photo, because it’s cool., but their representative was rude to me when I was in their booth, so I am not hyperlinking them. #SorryNotSorry!

Tissue Up Girl By Spextrum

Tissue UP Girl tissue box cover by Spextrum — for the girl who has everything!

Rite Lite Ad

Rite Lite is a Wholesale Judaica company with a great sense of humor!

Food Ornaments

Do the holidays remind you of Bacon? No matter what type of crazy and obscure ornaments you wish hang on your Christmas Tree, you will no doubt discover that the things you love are all made by Cody Foster & Co..

Asian Orb Ornament

Love Dishes

I love these Letter-Shaped Candy Dishes by Inspired Generations.

Colorful Things

This colorful lucite Jumbling Tower (Jenga knock-off) game and lucite Chess Set are by Sunny Life Lucite Collection of puzzles and games!

Graziani Candles

Graziani is a very well-known Italian luxury candlemaker looking to expand their business in the US. Aren’t they simply gorgeous? Available in the full spectrum of colors, these long-burning, lacquered orbs — called Meloria — are white on the inside and they burn hollow (rather than melting downward) to cast a warm, colorful glow in your home. Graziani candles are always hand-finished, for a bespoke touch. The Meloria line is currently available only in Italy, but thanks to the exposure garnered at NY Now I am sure we will be seeing them in stores stateside by the end of the year.

King Neptune Statue

Before I wrap this up, I really want to give a shout out to a selection of my favorite displays at the show, because visual marketing is everything!

Favreaulous Factory Booth Display

Favreau Design by Steven Favreau (aka Favreaulous Factory) went all out for their booth, incorporating a vintage Carousel Seat into their whimsically-themed display! Simply Favreaulous!

Passion Mural By Jason Naylor

Artist and Designer Jason Naylor live-panted this Passion mural onsite to promote his public and site-specific artwork, which you can see all over the country, including NYC’s Pier 17 at South Street Seaport.

Sparkle Booth Entrance

What’s in here? OMG! Two’s Company Home Design recreated an entire store with multiple storefronts right on the show floor.

Too Glam

Too glam to give a damn, indeed!

Chinese Lanterns

Chinese Lanterns

Twos Company Home Design

Who wouldn’t want to shop there? I want to live there!

Thanks For The Inspiration, NY Now! See You Next Year!

Modern Art Monday Presents: Todd Gray, Euclidean Gris Gris 2

Euclidean Gris Gris 2
Photo By Gail

Todd Gray’s work draws from his archive of photographs amassed during the past forty-five years of his career. Taken in locations from Hollywood to Ghana (where he maintains a studio),  these images have been selected by the artist to explore the complex interrelation of Blackness, diasporic identity, and historic systems of exploitation. For his ongoing series Exquisite Terribleness, begun in 2013, Gray collages photographs into a layered arrangements of thrift store frames, creating compositions of fragmented bodies. Many of the individual photographs that Gray uses for his collages were shot following his own creative visions; others, such as in Euclidean Gris Gris 2 (2018) were commissioned, including many he took as Michael Jackson’s personal photographer in the 1970s and early 1980s. Jackson is significant here for Gray not as a celebrity or figure of controversy, but as a global phenomenon whose almost mythic status serves to frame the complex issues explored in Gray’s work. Michael Jackson was accused of child sexual abuse in 1983 and then tried and acquitted for the crime in 2005. New allegations surfaced in a documentary released on HBO in early 2019.

Photographed as Part of The 2019 Biennial Exhibit at The Whitney Museum, NYC