Tag Archives: graffiti

May Peace Prevail on Earth

The traditional Aztec dancers from the Día de los Muertos festival reminded me of this mural I saw a few weeks ago with its blend of cultural imagery, including what appear to be various gods or goddesses.

It’s on an old boarded-up apartment building at the corner of 28th Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. I wasn’t able to locate any artists’ signatures, but I did discover that the writing running along the top of the mural, which spans two sides of the building, says “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in several different languages. How beautiful is that? And how beautiful is this mural?!! The artistry is amazing.

Oakland Mural Art

The circle of black, red, and white above reminds me of some of the art I saw at the Museum of Anthropology at UBC in Vancouver, much of its collection focused on the art of the native peoples of the northwest coast. The figure of the raven is featured predominantly… legend has it that the first men were born out of a clamshell overseen by the raven (A Haida legend of the Raven and the First Men).

I wish I knew who the figure below surrounded by flames represents. Please send me some info if you happen to know.

Oakland Mural Art

Oakland Mural Art

I also love the incorporation of modern comic book characters (explorers above & warriors below) in between the dieties.

Oakland Mural Art

Oakland Mural Art

This last one looks Tibetan to me… but I really do not know. Anyone?

Oakland Mural Art

Note: later learned this to be another work by the folks at Community Rejuvenation Project.

Adam5100 & Rowan Morrison

Remember the hand stencil from SF Shout Out! the other day? Here’s the Oaktown version…

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It’s actually two hands… can you see that?

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I did a little research and found out (thanks to the gracious folks at Rowan Morrison, exterior pictured below) that the artist responsible is Adam5100. He’s a CCAC (now CCA) graduate who channeled his graffiti skills into more formal printmaking techniques there. He’s known for his use of complex multi-layered stencils, typically applied on canvas rather than concrete. If you check out his website, you’ll get the idea… it’s amazing these images are created with stencils! Here are a couple of my favs:
http://www.adam5100.com/display_image.php?image=36
http://www.adam5100.com/display_image.php?image=35

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He installed “the hand” on the side of Rowan Morrison’s building in June of 2008 in conjunction with a solo show there, entitled “The Heart Vs. The Mind in a Fight to the Finish”. I love that! Here are a couple snaps of the process, provided by Rowan Morrison (more on them further down this post… )

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He currently is exhibiting at White Walls in San Francisco for their exhibit, The Stencil Show which is up until 11/7, and also has a piece in London’s Stolen Space Gallery as part of local boys Green Day‘s commissioned pieces designated to accompany their new album 21st Century Breakdown. This guy is prolific!

And I found this great video of him doing a tiny stencil… basically a trailer for the solo show at RM. It’s only a minute long… you have to check this out!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WAsqQWNkTTo

Now to Rowan Morrison… I hope you’re still with me, because this is a cool space. They’re located on 40th street near Broadway and have limited hours, but you can check them out on Fridays & Saturdays between 11am-6pm, or by special appointment. Run by husband and wife artists Pete Glover & Narangkar Glover (also CCA graduates), RM is a gallery/bookstore specializing in artist books, home grown ‘zines and special edition prints. They’ve got a great space for perusing these items in person, but if you’re more virtually inclined, they have an online store and a great blog about art books.  Please check them out.

And if you happen to make your way there… you can grab a bite to eat at Mama’s Royal Cafe just around the corner on Broadway.  I’ll probably do a whole post about Mama’s sometime in the future because it’s certainly worthy (full of funky art and fantastic food) and is simply one of my all-time oakland favs…  In the meantime, I’ll simply say, “It’s the best!

Oh… one last thing.  We’re headed to the cemetery tomorrow… mwa ha ha haaaa!

Time’ll Tell

I was at a party last weekend and a friend was talking philosophically about how the rate of change is continually accelerating. What once might have taken a century in terms of transformation, now takes a decade. In the future, maybe just a year.

This not-so-little piece of graffiti art seems to touch on that…

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It’s actually a giant wheat paste! The bicycle rack gives a sense of scale… needless to say, it’s large. The buffalo probably measures a good 10 ft in length and nearly 7 ft in height, and seems to be a reproduction of a smaller drawing. It was printed out onto 5 large sheets of poster paper, then cut out into pieces and pasted up onto this shuttered Wolf’s camera drive-thru. There is no artist’s signature.

I’m not sure what it means… a clash between eras, and the conflicts that result? Man’s domination of nature? The title lends a clue, I suppose. What do you think it’s about?

It’s technically in Berkeley, at the intersection of Ashby & Telegraph, but it’s only about 6 blocks from the Oakland border, and cool enough to warrant the border crossing.

SF Shout Out!

I zipped into San Francisco early Saturday morning to pick up my new Canon G11 from Calumet.  Have you guys been there?  It’s a great professional photography store with really just about everything… cameras (of course), studio & lighting equipment, seamless supplies, printers with a wide assortment of papers, a fantastic equipment rental department, and an art gallery upstairs.

The G11 is the first camera I’ve bought in over three years since buying my 5D (except for my Holga), and I am very excited! Nearly all of the photos I’ve posted on this blog were taken either with a 8 year old camera (which isn’t particularly pocket-sized) or with my iPhone, because I am too lazy to carry my big camera everywhere. With this new smaller camera, I plan to take my photo-documentarianism to the next level! (And yes, I do believe I made up that word.)

While waiting for the camera store to open, I spotted CELLspace across the street. I haven’t been there in a few years (sadly), and I definitely don’t remember it being quite this amazingly cool outside…

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Recognize the hand above? The same stencil exists in Oakland… have you seen it? Check back for the Oaktown version, and hopefully a bit more info about the artist who created it.

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The one above reminds me of a cool poster slapped up in multiple parts by Ashby and Telegraph. It’s Berkeley, not Oakland, but peeps keep mentioning it to me so I think I’ll throw that up later this week too. Please visit again. We’ll be headed to the cemetery at the end of the week for a properly spooky Halloween!

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