Tuesday, December 30, 2014

DECEMBER ART IN ALPHABET CITY

New York has been having the oddest winter weather (aka, it's been the same temperature in Southern California...) but I am totally game for enjoying it. Wandering around the city in December with no snow on the streets is something I definitely wasn't expecting when we decided to spend the holidays in NYC this year, and it's been a wonderful Christmas miracle! (For me. Sorry to all you snow lovers.) 

I rarely walk far enough southeast to cross into Alphabet City, but I knew that this massive block mural had gone up and I couldn't wait to see it. I enticed my boyfriend with promises of Crif Dogs (bacon wrapped hot dogs!) and Otto's Tacos (the best tacos on the East Coast!), both just a short walk away from Alphabet City in the East Village. 

Although it was warm, the skies were cloudy and we weren't sure we'd make it through the day without umbrellas. Walking down Losaida Ave., some storefronts are bright and colorful, but the day was overall a little drab. That is, until we got to East 7th St. and could see this mural peeking out of it's corner spot on the ave. We had finally arrived, after a 2 mile walk, and it was time to enjoy the scenery. Easy as ABC! 












This wall adds an awesome, colorful energy to the neighborhood. While taking pictures, there were dozens of others admiring the wall with us, waiting for the bus or stopping to take snap shots. It was impossible for me to pick a favorite letter, but I have to say the L M N O P is my favorite section. Art on this wall was organized by Green Villian, and painted by Buff Monster, Sheryo and the Yok, Roachi, Steiner, Kevin Lyons, Victor Ving, and El Moat. I don't think I am forgetting anyone :) 

On our walk back west through Alphabet City and into the East Village, I came across this happy little spread of murals on the side of a school. I couldn't help but think it was the best way for me to end my street art photography adventure of 2014. Peace, love and art. Until next time, Happy New Year!!! 





Outfit pictured: Dress by Finn & Clover. Combat boots by Zigi Soho. Leather jacket from H&M. Gold chain bun piece from ASOS. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

COLOR CULTURE: ART IN THE LOWER EAST SIDE

Waking up on a cold, but super sunny, December day with no plans for the day- yes, I love the taste of freedom! Two iced coffees later, I decided to head down to my favorite NYC neighborhood to catch up on some new murals. What I forgot was that this particular Saturday was a colorful, cultural weekend for the city, and that even my calm, cool, collected day would have some adventure and wild sights built in. 

 A few blocks away, in Washington Square Park, thousands gathered to protest the police brutality cases that have been plaguing our city, nation and media. But the scene in the Lower East Side was quite the opposite--happy, drunk Santa's (and elves, reindeers, gingerbread cookies, etc) running around the streets. With both crowds together on the same subway cars, and me in between, we all headed in our own directions. Whatever your flavor, or Saturday activity of choice, the Lower East Side welcomes it all. The art is the same--from fun loving colors to political messages, and everything on either side of the extreme. A balance and mix of it all, because honestly, art is a reflection of our lives. 
Art by the Drif! for The Lisa Project NYC
Paste-ups above by Hektad
From funky fresh roller gates on Suffolk and Rivington, to the more classic pieces on Stanton and Essex, and glittery sex symbols on Chrystie and Stanton, the Lower East Side really does exemplify every style and character. I love the LES' every color! 



By Gumshoe Art 
How beautiful is this piece? The color seems to radiate off the brick. Maybe just because it was sunny, but these murals seem to be getting brighter and brighter. 
By Hueman
By Dasic Fernandez


A mile and a half later, I had worked up an appetite and grown tired of 4pm drunken stumblings and screens. (OK, I'm just bitter because two years ago I broke my arm the day of Santacon. The holiday has been ruined forever for me.) As we headed towards the subway, I stumbled upon the last gem of the day, and it's colors are so fall and so fabulous. By Sheryo and the Yok, "Squirt Run Squirt." 




All in all, it was the perfect weekend for wandering and street art finds. Now that everyone is back from Art Basel in Miami (yes, I'm still jealous), I'll be looking forward to new murals and graffiti popping up!! 

Until next time...

xx
Naomi

Sunday, December 7, 2014

FROM THE STREETS TO THE GALLERY: ART BY INCARCERATED JERKFACE

New York: city of dreams, city of lights, city of opportunity. Countless rags-to-riches stories come from this city, promising that dreams and goals of any shape or size can be fulfilled here. 

Take the Million Dollar Listing stars for example. Struggling real estate brokers becoming millionaires in a single television season is the essence of the New York minute.

Street art is no different. Of course, many graffiti artists are have been putting in work on the streets for decades--and they certainly deserve the respect for their long hours and years in the industry. But there are also the amazing come-up stories like that of Incarcerated Jerkface's--an artist his whole life, who only just painted his first mural a year ago. Since then, his art has become instafamous--with more than 64,000 followers on Instagram, and over a dozen murals in NY and NJ. He quickly became one of my favorite artists, and I genuinely look forward to every single one of his new murals (and really, chasing them around the city never gets old). To say the least, I was so excited to see the translation of his street art into canvas work at his latest gallery show at Bottleneck Gallery in Williamsburg. Check it out! 

I usually end with my favorite piece of the gallery, but the title of this Cheshire Cat is just a perfect starting point for Jerkface's show, and artistic career. "Every adventure requires a first step." 



A canvas version of his first mural, originally at 5Pointz. 
"Greetings Jerklings"
"Like Jerry Does Tom" 
"Most Shady"
(Blurry picture thanks to my camera battery dying, too bad because this was an absolutely amazing piece!)
"Jerk Way of Life"
Live painted at his gallery opening party!
Depending on how often you read my posts, or how often you walk around the streets of Manhattan and Brooklyn, or how often you go on the "popular" page on Instagram, you've probably seen most of Jerkface's work before. In case you've missed anything over the past year, the rest of this post is dedicated to the past successes of Jerkface in 2014. I can't wait to see what next year has to bring for his art, both in the studio and on the streets. 

P.S. I can't believe it's already December, and I'm really doing 2014 recaps. Where did the time go?! 
Snoopy at Rag&Bone on Elizabeth Street and Houston
Pink Panther in Bushwick


\
Mario in Bushwick. An oldie! You can really see here how his style has evolved over the last year. 
"Homer's Inferno" in the Lower East Side. 
Richie Rich at Rag & Bone
Charlie Brown, 6 stories high in the East Village. 
"JerkAngelo" in Bushwick
(He's currently painting over this one! Excited to see the new mural, but will totally miss this turtle.)
Cookie Monster in Bushwick
Superman in Little Italy

Which one is your all-time favorite? I just can't decide....

You can visit Jerkface's website for more (including his blog with more pictures & shop) at http://www.jerkfacenyc.com


Until next time..stay warm my New Yorkers! 



Xx
Naomi 

Friday, November 28, 2014

NEW YORK CHARM: DOWNTOWN STREET STYLE

There are a million reasons why New York is a charming city--like the way that if you're having a crappy day, the right train comes without delay and lifts your spirits. Or your bartender forgets to charge half your drinks, or you find a metro card with $40 on it, or the pouring rain starts as soon as you are safely inside. I could go on and on about reasons why I love this city, from the beauty in changing seasons to the interesting people you'll undoubtedly meet along the way. But what I'd rather show you, is the charm of the streets. 

Among all the promotion we see in the streets, from brand advertisements to inspiring "dream big" messages, politically charged statements or New York survival tips, my favorite of them all has to be the iconic, I <3 NY. It really never gets old (except for the tourist t-shirts. Those are annoying). So naturally, I love this new piece by Buff Monster on Houston and E 1st St. This traffic jam of a corner connecting the Lower East Side and East Village is a little street art haven, most popularly showcasing the Centre-Fuge Public Art project. 

Also made for Centre-Fuge is this funky concrete wall by Elle and the London Police. Even though it's black & white, it's not missing any of the energy of a colorful mural. Love it! 

As we make our way into the East Village from E 1st St, another type of New York charm emerges. As on many basketball court walls and high school buildings, a giant space for graffiti and street art alike. 

The newest in the neighborhood, and most glorified for its' size and nostalgic fun, is this Charlie Brown piece by JerkFace. Rising 6 stories (60 feet!) up on the backside of East Community High School, this mural is a perfect example of the positivity  and charm that street art can bring to a city. The wall was sponsored  by Wat-aah!, with their project "Taking Back the Streets" that promotes drinking water and maintaining a healthy lifestyle to kids. They're able to reach people, well, because it's kind of hard to miss. And it's cool, and kids like it, and hopefully therefore they will be more likely to drink water than soda! 
JerkFace on Tumblr 
Also in the back of the high school, is the community basketball court, which dons its own, more weathered art.  Though no one was actually playing basketball this particular morning, there were a few skateboarders coming in and out. The detail and bright colors make this court truly beautiful, and now with JerkFace across the street, this backyard of the East Village now looks complete. Take a look around! 




Fun, right?!

With the Lower East Side just back down 1st Ave, and hundreds of options for lunch spots in that direction, we turned around and headed south again. Along the way, we find a graffiti and wheat paste hotspot. From reminders that "reality is just a state of mind", to a Snow White paste-up, and words of wisdom from an owl's eyes, there's so much to take in. 

Less than five feet from me taking these pictures, by the way, was a homeless guy peeing into the gutter. Take a breath---it's all part of the charm. 


Aha. And now, for the grand finale. Where the streets of New York truly showcase a mix of art and fashion, and in an all-black-everything, edgy sort of way. Downtown street style, as it is in its most creative charm. 
Karl Lagerfeld + Tom Ford, in stark comparison to the jet black walls and the heart on the rolling gate. This iconic New York street style piece is by the only & only Bradley Theodore. He's now on a Eurotrip getting inspiration for his next pieces, so this is what we have to savor until something new comes along. It may be my favorite Bradley Theodore yet, and I can only hope that it stays on the unassuming corner of Ludlow and Rivington forever. If not, it's at least immortalized on my Instagram! 
Tom Ford by Bradley Theodore

Only in New York City are you constantly surrounded by greatness...


With that, this week's street art adventure has come to an end. Any day with this many of my favorite artists and their pieces is a great one. Stay tuned, because next up will feature on these artists in my "From the Streets to the Gallery" specials! Anyone know who? :) 

xx
Naomi 



PS. Thank you so much for reading week after week! I've reached 10k views and couldn't be happier. I'm glad to see you're all along for the ride....