Recently I had the pleasure of working with Shepard Fairey on an mural during Art Basel in Miami. Shepard and his team work in sinc like a well tuned machine. it was truly a great experience and I hope we do another one in the future. I did a color wash coherent with the Beautifully Destroyed series I am currently working on and Shepard finished it off with his unique iconic style. The mural came out very strong, definitely a great way to end 2012. Good times!
The best thing about running around all night painting graffiti is running around all night painting graffiti. A few weeks ago I was in Miami at Art Basel putting in 12-18 hour days working on the beautifully destroyed project. At the end of the day, its nice to blow off some steam and get up…Especially when your rolling around with a lift and a ton of paint! good times!
My WC brotha, Mister cartoon stopped by and got busy, good times!BIRDMAN PHOTOS
Recently Shepard Fairey and I collaborated on a large wall in Miami during Art Basel. When we finished we couldn’t help but notice the backside of the building was a banging freeway spot! The next night I did one of the color washes I have recently been doing from the beautifully destroyed series. Then Shepard came the following day and painted his Icon and border. We let it ride like that for about a week or so then we added the letters. I knew it would bring unwanted attention when we started doing the letters so I tried to keep it one color, quick and simple. The size still took a little extra time, so as expected I had to abort and come back. In the end it all worked out and its running strong. Good Times!
A few weeks ago a good friend of mine Gregory Siff flew down to Miami to help me knock out some walls. Late one night after we finished the first coat on the Shepard wall, he looked across a parking lot from the lift and said I’d like to rock that wall. The wall was the back of a local liquor store, since it was late and the streets were empty we headed over to the liquor store in the lift. After buying a few liquid snacks, we convinced the clerk to let us rock the wall. After the first coat he came running out and said the wall looked like “do do”. We just laughed and kept throwing paint. This wall was one of the funnest walls I did while I was in Miami. It was totally spontaneous and it came out really cool, even the clerk liked it when it was done. The name of the wall is Strictly Kings And Better. It is his twist on the graffiti hall of fame. However he added various rock stars, old paint masters, and people who inspire him as well as graffiti artists. He completely gets in a zone when he paints and its very cool watching his interpretations of these portraits….Good Times
Recently I had the pleasure of painting with my fellow West Coast Artist, MEAR ONE. It was real nice painting with him all these years later. When Mear was young he used to come to my studio with an old friend of mine, Skate CBS. ( wRite In Power …Skate ). Mear was always focused and intense. I can honestly say I watched him grow up through his art. He grew up questioning society for good reason and his paintings always told a story about where we as graffiti writers were, and where we wanted to go. Now his paintings question the universe and politics and just as the universe and politics you can get lost and find it hard to tell the beginning or the end, yet the journey is mind boggling…. Mear, lives and captures this journey with paint…Good times!!!
Below are photos by Birdman capturing the “Beautiful destruction” of “Time and Space”
phase one is the beautiful destruction phase. We tapped into a fire hydrant to help attack the massive walls…The fire hose is a work out….Our West Coast brotha, Mister Cartoon, touched down on the red eye from L.A. and came down to the wall to hang out for a little bit. Cartoon quickly caught the fever and rocked a wall down the street….Mear is constant energy like his paintings….Below is the last time I painted with MEAR 1991…rooftop at University Of Southern California….This wall caused some controversy,… The University later made a poster of the wall and sent it to every high school in the United States……
People keep asking what is the purpose or meaning of my latest murals. I don’t think there is a purpose or a meaning as much as they are a visual testament to the power of color. The following is an excerpt from my book. The book is on hold, because I am determined to release the book as limited edition pieces of art. Having original art from the beautifully destroyed series being a part of each book… As young writers pioneering the graffiti scene in Los Angeles, freeways were our answer to Subway Trains in New York. In New York all the commuters rode subways. The writers were making social commentaries to the public on big steel canvases. We were the same youth striving to be heard here on the West Coast. In Los Angeles all the commuters drive on the Freeways. We were making our mark via urban expressionism on these big cement canvases along the sides of the freeway. The thing we had in common was the need to get up, to be heard and or seen. To force society to recognize us and what we had to say or contribute. Now keep in mind to be heard you don’t have to write political messages. A splash of color can speak a thousand words on some mundane dilapidated building or surface. Its kind of funny when I think about years of painting these elaborate pieces with all these interlocking letters etc. I was always entranced with the final picture as a whole. The color on the surface. The total coverage, or piece placed strategically on the sprawling urban jungle. And now I have started a series called “Beautifully Destroyed by Risk”…It is a wash of color on these specific totally mundane items. Even transforming traditional paint jobs. I.E a house or a car to a wash of color.
I have traveled thousand of miles on these intertwined freeways and streets painting these interlocking pieces… its like I’ve traveled artistically thousand s of miles to get to my destination of figuring out what I want to express… I’ve finally figured out the deconstruction process that leads you to a refined final project…..
The following are some photos a good friend of mine BIRDMAN took recently in Miami….
Africa is a local guy who lives in one of the buildings I recently painted. Local people are very important to the beautifully destroyed series. The murals are for them, the purpose is to evoke emotion via color, hopefully uplifting people and their environment. Africa was very happy with the mural and that makes me feel happy, Especially because he’s a beast with that Machete!!!The only people who don’t like the series are the people who rent me lifts….Getting the instagram shot…The beautifully destroyed series this year in Miami was meant to be all part of one. The goal was to beautifully destroy as much of a specific neighbor hood as possible. I completed about 8 buildings in a 10 square block radius. I am going back to complete about 5 more in a month or so. When you look down on the Park West area from the surrounding high rise buildings, they stand out like jewels among a concrete jungle… Each of these dilapidated buildings tell a story, each one is a righteously a jewel in the urban jungle, equivalent to a majestic tree in the wild. They all need to be preserved and bring joy to the people who interact with them. Some people see an eye sore, I see an opportunity to uplift people and their environment…
Last week at Art Basel I had the chance to catch up to my friend Anthony Lister. In between all the Basel chaos we managed to squeak out a wall together. It was definitely a good time! We’re definitely going to rock another one in Los Angeles soon! This is a recent series he’s doing of ballet dancers on top of The beautiful destruction series I have been working on. I think this one really works well together….Good times!
first stage is the beautiful destruction process….
The lift was a casualty….Then Lister performed his own ballet of sorts….He killed it on this one…Finished product….BIRDMAN PHOTOS
I had the pleasure of spending a few days in Mexico City on the OSIRIS SHOES tour, a few weeks ago. I was in the middle of Art Basel in Miami and my good friends at Osiris said take a few days off and come eat tacos, drink beer, and paint some S%$#! So I hoped on a flight and met them there! Good Times!!!
The local vandal Squad stopped by, it was tense for a minute but they were cool. The elections were going on that day and the streets started getting pretty wilds, so I think they were preoccupied…Later that day there was some rioting on the streets it got pretty wild!The signing was great, I met some really cool people…Thanks to the MONTANA Store for hooking it up!The best tacos ever!!!!