Monday, 15 August 2011

Bomb it All! War and Geurilia for free Art.

"it's all about the freedom to express yourself"
Picture illegally  taken from from London Street Art Anthology, Alex Macnaughton

Over the last few years street art has established itself as an internationally recognized art from. But where can this street-inspired movement go from here? Sebastian Peiter is asking in his book Guerilla Art(2009) a fundamental question about what are the limits of what can be considered as art or not.
Street Art is born  in the early 1960s in downtown New York and The New York Times titled once "New York capital of Graffiti". The movement was a free and anarchist expression form for young artists coming mainly from the suburbs and who didn't have access to the mainstream gallery system. The "conventional" art world was not ready to accept  "the outlaws" artists escaping the rules of  the "Art" business. Taggers and bombers were too free to be captured by the commercial evil.
Since  times have changed and street artists, bombers and taggers are finding their way to the mainstream art business. Keith Harring and  Jean-Michel Basquiat, just to mention  two of  a longer list of contributing artists, were the pioneers  introducing  this wild style art in hype galleries. The in London based artist Bansky, is often chiselled off walls, boarded up and sold on auctions far exceeding the gallery prices. Less lucky artist see their works stripped from the walls and sold on the internet for a lot of of money, but the artist himself don't see one penny. The street artist is considered as a vandal,  often tracked by police and sometimes even put into jail, but the illegal sales of their art is "accepted" by the art business. The phenomena is not new, it is still  interesting to notice  how a sub culture or cult can become a hype culture often disconnected from its original values.
Hip Hop has contributed to the international diffusion of the movement. From New York, to Sao Polo, Madrid, Barcelona, London, Amsterdam, Tel Aviv, Tokio, Moscow  etc... the walls are becoming urban open air spaces for free expression. The walls are contemporary witnesses of social and artistic changes in society. The wall is an ephemeral collective memory of instant expressions. 
Today museums, influenced by the international art business, are offering space to street artists,  contemporary art galleries are organizing worldwide art networks and selling works for terrific amounts of money. Advertisers are using the same "Guerilla" techniques for promoting  their products. In New York  Adidas send every night a "Guerilla-team" for projecting their ads on empty walls or buildings somewhere in the city. Every night another place, another wall, another building and another neighborhood... hypocritically clean and cheap, but  very effective indeed. 
The questions are still remaining and. what about the  free underground spirit of the movement, what about the messages  left on the walls expressing love peace, anger or revolt , What about the free expression itself, Is graffiti still the voice or identities from urban subcultures? Is the commercialization of street art the end of  a true and free expression? 
The real  bombers and taggers are still free minded artists,  they don't care about art and its business  We cannot control or stop them and they will never give up their freedom to express their visions into tags and  into bombing walls...and this is a real freedom  and  the guarantee of having the right on self expression.

 "Smile again" 
photo Marc T

"Free as a cockroach " 
photo Marc T

Street art is reflecting the tensions, conflicts, struggles and the decay of urbanization.
photo Marc T.

 "We don't ask for walls.. we take them"
photo Marc T

 "Arrows on the road are forcing you to take a direction, but arrows on a wall makes you thinking."
photo Marc T

" bombing is pure free art, put it in a museum it will die like a free bird in a cage"
photo Marc T

 "Graffiti is a civil duty, bringing art on city walls without paying for it and without asking money for it"
photo Marc T

"one of my favorites  Marc T"

 'Bombing is a constant act of  peace"
photo Marc T

 "Poetry all over"
photo Marc T

" bombers are gazing the system"
photo Marc T.

"better to bomb a wall than to pee on it"
photo Marc T.

The captions under the photographs are taken from street and graffiti artists all over the world to illustrate the photographs taken in Tel Aviv.

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