Supertouch buddy/French street art sensation JR has gone big on the streets of NYC's Lower East Side this week in visual preparation for the debut of English artstar-maker STEVE LAZARIDES' upcoming Beautiful-Losers battling "Outsiders" show opening this Friday, September 26th on the Bowery (more on this soon). Meanwhile, innocent New Yorkers can only stand idly by as the streets of their beloved Gotham are stormed by the French like a reverse Norman invasion, albeit with more wheatpaste and fewer bayonets...
As we reported earlier, immediately following BANKSY's recent pre-Hurricane Ike art trip through NEW ORLEANS the newly-placed guerilla art installations stenciled onto the sides of vacant houses and abandoned buildings throughout the city's Katrina-ravaged Lower 9th Ward began to disappear. Some have fallen prey to obvious treasure hunters (hopefully New Orleans residents who can actually put the money from sold Banksys back into the neighborhood), and others, ironically, have been erased by the so-called "Gray Ghost," an anonymous New Orleans resident known for covering graffiti with gray paint that Banksy parodied in several of the recent installations. Regardless of who’s taken them, it’s only a matter of time till the doors and siding planks bearing the mark of the Bristol bad boy begin to make their way into the seemingly endless array of “street art” auctions of late. Following is a near-complete recap of the streetjacking to date. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
ST REPORTING FROM LONDON FOR DAY II OF DAMIEN HIRST'S SOTHEBY'S AUCTION:
Despite the dark pall cast over day two of DAMIEN HIRST's massive "Beautiful Inside My head Forever" auction at SOTHEBY'S by the weekend's Lehman financial crisis and tomorrow's impending AIG disaster, anxious collectors bid big on the remaining 177 art lots like their social reputations depended on it to bring the sale's two-day total to a whopping £111.4 million, or $200.8 million USD. Personal preference seemed to reign supreme throughout today's two uneven sales sessions with lots like Hirst's preserved unicorn piece, "The Dream," selling for $7,284,408 USD, way over its $533,005 USD high estimate, while his pickled zebra piece, "The Incredible Journey," sold for only $3,375,701 USD, finishing just below its low-end $3,553,369 USD million sales estimate. The biggest sellers of the day, however, were the artist's massive array of various butterfly and spin art paintings, perennial favorites in Hirst's aesthetic arsenal that he's vowed to discontinue following this auction. To emphasize that point, the auctioneer even chided the crowd with the motivational come-on, "They're running out, ladies and gentlemen." The highlight of the day's incredibly long, monotonous proceedings came not when Damien Hirst's image appeared magically on the face of the auction pedestal, but when a delirious attendee began bidding "six pounds!, six pounds!" on a £100,000+ auction lot before being dragged away by earpiece-wearing security guards, babbling incoherently. Already a billionaire and the “biggest dollar earner in the history of art,” according to his manager Frank Dunphy, Hirst's most important work of conceptual art seems to be within a hair's breadth of reaching completion. The piece in question, you ask? His bank account. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Following BANKSY's recent art run through NEW ORLEANS and the city's subsequent drenching from Hurricane Gustav, observant residents have begun removing the English street artist's guerilla art gifts, including the stenciled rat from the side of this Katrina-ravaged home. Other pieces have been reported missing and we await photographic confirmation. Meanwhile, we're renting a sawsall and booking a flight to the South with an eye towards early retirement. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
It's summer in London (yes, that cold dankness is considered "sunny weather"), and the city walls have once again bloomed with the fresh artwork of Supertouch's own French street art ambassador, WK INTERACT. In town for the opening of his joint art show with fellow painter ANTHONY LISTER at the venerable ELMS LESTERS PAINTING ROOMS, monsieur Interact has once again left his signature black & white fingerprints on some of the city's prime real estate. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
In an admitted last chance fame grab, former KEITH HARING buddy & sometime collaborator ANGEL ORTIZ, aka: "Little Angel," & "LA II" has taken a spray can to Haring's reconstructed memorial mural on Houston Street this month, filling in all the negative space with squiggly patterning and repeating LA II tags. Having met in 1980 when Haring was 22, and Ortiz was 13 after Haring expressed admiration for "Angel's" graffiti chops, the pair collaborated on many of Haring's early pieces with Ortiz' style proving to be a solid inspiration for the rising art star. Said Haring of Ortiz, “We just immediately hit it off. It’s as if we’d known each other all our lives. He’s like my little brother.” When Haring originally painted the now-reconstructed mural in 1982, he even left an existing LA II tag in place in his finished piece. When the mural was repainted at the behest of the Keith Haring Foundation and Deitch Projects to the tune of $30,000, this summer, LA II's original tag was recreated for the occasion. Still a struggling artist 18 years after Haring's death, when asked about his mural tagging, Ortiz told the NEW YORK TIMES, "What keeps me going is my art. I wanted to show the foundation: This is LA II, this is how it all started.” The fate of the altered mural is still undecided and may have to be cleaned or removed. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Inimitable art provocateur and Cremaster Cycle mastermind MATTHEW BARNEY isn't shy about his love for dirty black metal. A fact that guests at his house party and pig roast featuring live performances by such delicately named bands as Copremeis, Inquisition, Dagon, Krallice, and S.M.E.S., couldn't have been happier about. Master chef Barney kept his metal militia satiated by roasting and carving up several suckling pigs, providing a suitably decadent buffet for the occasion. Of course, Supertouch's own metal casualty/toothless wonder STUNTBOY (aka: Erik Foss) was on hand to divine some swine and pop some shots. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Following last week’s opening of STEPHEN POWERS’ (aka: ESPO) controversial new “Waterboard Thrill Ride” on CONEY ISLAND, it’s proved to be a runaway success with queues down the block to get a peek at the animatronic torture scene through the cell bars the norm. Of course, all that street buzz has drawn the mainstream media like flies. Here’s the word from CNN & the NYPost:
We love seeing untouched vintage graffiti, and this sighting of a large piece by Parisian street artist FAFI and her then-boyfriend TILT on the wall in a DEATH VALLEY ghost town is a welcome find...