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    Multi-Story Murals Showcase Domesticity through Elegant Ceramic Tableware

    
    Art

    #ceramics
    #murals
    #pottery
    #public art
    #street art
    #tableware

    October 23, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    Oviedo, Spain. All images © Manolo Mesa, shared with permission
    Spanish street artist Manolo Mesa merges public and private spheres through large-scale murals that highlight simple domestic objects. The multiple-story artworks depict traditional dining scenes, from an elegant porcelain tea set to a lone jug with swirling flourishes to another vessel resting on a saucer.
    To complete a recent tableau in Oviedo, Spain, for Parees Fest, Mesa explored the history of an abandoned pottery factory in San Claudio. Event organizers gathered tableware from local residents, a collection that informed the shapes and exterior motifs of his work. “I was able to see all the evolution of this earthenware in the houses of Oviedo. I found postwar pieces, which were inherited and preserved with great affection by collectors. We saw (the) tableware of a lifetime from the middle of the century,” he writes on Instagram. Showcasing a delicate collection of vessels, the resulting mural explores an otherwise hidden facet of local history.
    Find Mesa on Instagram to view some works-in-progress and follow his ceramic-centric projects.

    #ceramics
    #murals
    #pottery
    #public art
    #street art
    #tableware

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    Strength: Pejac Honors Spain’s Health Workers with a Moving Trio of Interventions

    
    Art

    #COVID-19
    #painting
    #public art
    #trompe l’oeil

    October 16, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    “Overcoming.” All images © Pejac, shared with permission
    On the campus of University Hospital Marqués de Valdecilla in Santander, Spain, a trio of interventions by street artist Pejac (previously) simultaneously responds to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and offers potential paths for healing. The new series, titled Strength, is Pejac’s direct response to the 50,000 people who have died from the virus in his home country. “The idea of the Strength project arises as a gesture of gratitude to the health workers of Valdecilla, for their work in general and during this Covid crisis in particular. Offering them what I do best, which is painting,” the artist says.
    In “Social Distancing” (shown below), a horde of people escape from a crevice in the building’s facade. The trompe l’oei artwork is a multi-layered metaphor for the ways the virus has ruptured society and the necessity of community care and compassion. “Caress” features two silhouettes standing six-feet apart, with Monet-style reflections on the ground nearby. The figures, which represent a patient and doctor, stretch their hands toward each other.
    Pejac worked in collaboration with young oncology patients to complete the third piece, titled “Overcoming” (shown below), in which a child perched on a wheelchair recreates Van Gogh’s “Wheat Field with Cypresses.” “This is something that we, as a society could do—take this crisis and use it to propel us forward,” he says.
    Watch the heartwarming video below that captures the works-in-progress, and find more about the tribute on Pejac’s Instagram.

    “Social Distancing”
    “Social Distancing”
    “Caress”
    “Caress”
    “Social Distancing”
    “Social Distancing”
    “Overcoming”
    “Overcoming”

    “Overcoming”
    “Social Distancing”
    

    #COVID-19
    #painting
    #public art
    #trompe l’oeil

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    Mantra’s Trompe L’oeil Murals Encase Enormous Butterflies in Vintage-Style Boxes

    
    Art

    #butterflies
    #murals
    #public art
    #street art
    #trompe l’oeil

    October 15, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    Torino, Italy. All images © Mantra, shared with permission
    Working with entomologists around the globe, the French street artist known as Mantra (previously) transforms brick facades and concrete walls into massive studies of local butterfly specimens. With framed outer edges that mimic a wooden box, the trompe l’oeil murals render the winged insects in detail, depicting their richly hued scales and delicate antennae. Each artwork features species native to the area, making it possible that a live specimen might flutter by its enormous counterpart.
    In a conversation with Colossal, Mantra said he’s harbored a lifelong fascination with entomology that stems from spending hours in French gardens and bucolic areas as a kid. “As a child, I was interested, curious, and focused on the small life forms in those places,” he says. His current practice hearkens back to those carefree hours and connects with an adolescent desire to become a naturalist. “My approach is as a scientist,” the artist says, noting that education about environmental care and issues is part of the goal.
    Although Mantra considers all insects and natural life beautiful and crucial to maintaining biodiversity, the focus on butterflies revolves around his artistic ambitions because the vivid creatures allow him to experiment with color, shape, and texture. Each specimen is rendered freehand before the artist adds detail and the illusory shadows that make them appear three-dimensional. By painting various Lepidoptera species again and again, the artist is “repeating a mantra,” a detail of his practice that informs the moniker he works under.
    In recent months, Mantra has traveled to Belgium, Denmark, and Sweden, in addition to various locations throughout France, to complete public artworks, and he’ll be in Arkansas this month for two projects curated by Just Kids. Follow all of the artist’s entomological murals on Instagram.

    Rombas, France
    Cancún, Mexico. Image by Gino Caballero
    Silkeborg, Denmark
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Dijon, France
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Brooklyn, New York
    Dallas, Texas. Image by Chop’ em Down
    Overum, Sweden
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Cancún, Mexico. Image by Gino Caballero
    Torino, Italy. Image by Martha Cooper

    #butterflies
    #murals
    #public art
    #street art
    #trompe l’oeil

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    Little Amal: An Enormous Puppet Is Traveling 8,000km to Shine Light on the Refugee Crisis

    
    Art

    #public art
    #puppets
    #refugees
    #social justice

    October 12, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    Photograph by Bevan Roos. All images shared with permission
    To draw attention to the ongoing refugee crisis, an oversized puppet will traverse 8,000 kilometers on a route starting at the Turkey-Syria border. From April to July 2021, “Little Amal” will travel across Greece, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, and France on a search “to find her mother. To get back to school. To start a new life.” The international journey will end in the United Kingdom, with a celebration at Manchester International Festival. Good Chance Theatre, a London-based organization dedicated to humanitarian and social justice efforts, is helming the public project “embodying the urgent message, ‘Don’t forget about us.’”
    The 3.5-meter tall character, which was created by Handspring Puppet Company, will stop in 70 cities across Europe to meet with locals and participate in celebrations and education programs. “At this time of unprecedented global change, The Walk is an artistic response: a cultural odyssey transcending borders, politics, and language to tell a new story of shared humanity – and to ensure the world doesn’t forget the millions of displaced children, each with their own story,” Good Chance writes in a statement.
    Check out the official map of Amal’s international journey and planned events on the project’s site, and follow along with updates on her progress on Instagram and YouTube. (via It’s Nice That)

    Photograph by Bevan Roos
    Photograph by Bevan Roos
    Photograph by Bevan Roos
    Photograph by Bevan Roos
    Photograph by Bevan Roos
    Photograph by Bevan Roos
    Photograph by Nick Wall

    #public art
    #puppets
    #refugees
    #social justice

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    An Intricate Lace Mural Envelops the Facade of a French Fashion Museum

    
    Art

    #lace
    #murals
    #public art

    September 29, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    All images © Nespoon
    On France’s northern shores lies the port city of Calais, a municipality that once was a destination for lace manufacturers. To escape economic and social difficulties, English textile artists and engineers immigrated in the late 19th Century, often establishing clandestine operations that defied patent laws by bringing specialty machines and practices to the region. Soon after, Calais became an industrial hub for lace manufacturing, employing around 40,000 residents.
    A new mural by Warsaw-based artist Nespoon (previously) celebrates that rich history through an oversized textile that envelops the facade of a factory. The public artwork features delicate mesh and floral elements that cover the side of the Cité de la Dentelle et de la Mode, the city’s fashion and lace museum. Nespoon chose this particular motif, which dates back to 1894, from the institution’s archive before spray painting its intricate details onto the building.
    Check out the video below to see the lace motif in-progress, and find more of the artist’s textile-based pieces on Behance and Instagram.

    #lace
    #murals
    #public art

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    MIMOSA: An Optimistic Collection of Temporary Installations Take Over Philadelphia’s Navy Yard

    
    Art

    #cross-stitch
    #installation
    #language
    #piñatas
    #public art
    #wire

    September 23, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    Justin Favela’s “Libertad (Freedom).” All images courtesy of Group X, shared with permission
    An eclectic array of installations recently popped up at the Navy Yard in Philadelphia, transforming the historic neighborhood into a temporary wonderland teeming with quirky characters, large-scale interventions, and optimism. A life-size piñata shaped like a 1984 Thunderbird is parked on 12th Street, cross-stitched roses trail across the brick facade of Building 99, and a typographic message casts shadows on a pavilion in a call for hope.
    Officially titled Mystery Island and the Marvelous Occurrence of Spontaneous Art, or MIMOSA, the entirely outdoor exhibition includes work from seven artists DAKU (previously), Justin Favela (previously), Kid Hazo with South Fellini, Reed Bmore, Liesbet Bussche, and Raquel Rodrigo (previously). It’s a collaboration between the anonymous collective Group X and the Navy Yard, which was overrun in 2018 by a gargantuan sea monster. MIMOSA‘s six site-specific installations are spread across 1,200 acres.

    DAKU’s “Ray of Hope”
    Activated by sunlight, DAKU’s installation “Rays of Hope” casts shadows in 25 different languages on a brick terrace in Crescent Park. Throughout the day as the light shifts, so do the silhouettes on the ground. “The sun has always been associated as a symbol of energy and so is hope,” DAKU says. Rays of light metaphorically serve as “a symbol of positivity and optimism.”
    By translating the word “hope” into dozens of languages, the anonymous Indian street artist puts forth a welcoming vision. “When we see a native language, we have a sense of belonging and familiarity with the space. Especially in a foreign land or a place, it makes it more relatable,” DAKU writes. “Languages have been a part of every culture and (have their) own visual aesthetic… Culture is common ground for any language or a form of visual art, and if one comes to think of it, language plays an essential role. It binds the culture in forming into a community.”

    Justin Favela’s “Libertad (Freedom)”
    A nod to his mother’s first purchase after immigrating from Guatemala to the United States in the 1980s, Favela’s paper-fringed car expands on the myth of “The American Dream.” “The promise that if you keep your head down, work really hard and save your money… you, too, can own a home with a two-car garage, get married, have kids, build an empire, and live an abundant and dignified life,” he says. Through his large-scale piñatas, Favela conveys stories like his mother’s, particularly in relation to her longing to return to Central America. “What about the immigrants that come here and realize that they moved to a country that does not want them here? Their stories are also important,” he says.
    Questions about identity, including his own as a first-generation, queer, Latinx American, and the experiences of people who have immigrated to the U.S. face inform Favela’s artworks. He subverts common narratives by offering a revised way of thinking centered on joy:
    What are we when we are not viewed as just a labor force? What if we stopped taking pride in suffering and the sacrifices that we had to make? What if we valued joy? Mental health? What if we could take a couple of days of…just because!? What would happen if could just be ourselves? When will we all be free?
    See the latest from GroupX and follow the installations popping up next in The Navy Yard on Instagram. If you’re in Philadelphia, check out MIMOSA before it closes November 2.

    DAKU’s “Ray of Hope”
    Raquel Rodrigo’s “Florecer (Flourish)”
    Reed Bmore’s “Bittersweetvine”
    Liesbet Bussche’s “Rusty Love / Urban Jewelry”
    Kid Hazo + South Fellini’s “Where the Wild Jawns Are”

    #cross-stitch
    #installation
    #language
    #piñatas
    #public art
    #wire

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    An Artistic Endeavor in Brussels Installs Custom Mosaics Outside Your Home—People Are Choosing Portraits of Their Cats

    
    Art

    #Brussels
    #cats
    #mosaics
    #pets
    #public art
    #street art

    September 16, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    Image courtesy of John Hyphen
    Cats, dogs, and other mammals are known to mark their territories in myriad ways, but pet owners in Brussels have discovered a more enduring and inviting method. What began as a single project by artist Ingrid Schreyers spurred a municipality-wide initiative: the government of Schaerbeek, a suburb bordering the city of Brussels, now installs any mosaic, either created by residents or a local artist, free of charge. Many people are choosing portraits of their furry companions, although the idiosyncratic designs range from playful depictions of wildlife to urban scenes.
    We’ve gathered some of the street-side assemblages here, but check out this Instagram account documenting the public art initiative for hundreds more. You also might enjoy these Japanese manhole covers and a similar mosaic-centered initiative to fill potholes.

    Image courtesy of John Hyphen
    Via pavement_project
    Image courtesy of John Hyphen
    Via pavement_project
    Image courtesy of John Hyphen

    #Brussels
    #cats
    #mosaics
    #pets
    #public art
    #street art

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    Okuda San Miguel Transforms a Stark Lighthouse in Spain into a Technicolor Beacon

    
    Art

    #lighthouse
    #murals
    #public art

    September 11, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    “Infinite Cantabria” (2020, Spain. All images © Okuda San Miguel, by Beatriz Carretero and Omar H. Garcia, shared with permission
    Situated along the coast in Cantabria, the Faro de Ajo has been transformed from a barren facade into a vivid display of more than 70 hues. The undertaking of artist Okuda San Miguel (previously), the 16-meter tower features a striped bird, wild animals rendered in bold blocks of color, and various dots and squiggles. Now bearing the name “Infinite Cantabria,” it is the first intervention on a Spanish lighthouse. “It has been a unique experience, both because of the artistic challenge that it has brought about for me, as well having carried this project out in my homeland,” says the artist, who is from the region in northern Spain.
    Follow Okuda San Miguel on Instagram to check out more of his global projects, and pick up a face mask, puzzle, or print for a smaller dose of his technicolor interventions. (via TimeOut)

    

    #lighthouse
    #murals
    #public art

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