Photos by G. Most art by Hanksy (see captions for details).
Hanksy – Best of the Worst
On March 28 and 29 2015, street artist Hanksy threw one of the most fun pop-up exhibits in recent memory. Located at 104 Delancey Street in Manhattan, the exhibit was called “Best of the Worst,” and it was housed in a vacant building on the Lower East Side.
Mile E. Coyote by Hanksy
Whereas a lot of street artists (and I’m not going to name names otherwise we’ll be here until next week) have tasted a tiny bit of success becoming Instagram-famous, their art started to suck (even more than it already did in some cases) while their egos exploded, I think Hanksy really kicked it up a notch and took it to the next level for “Best of the Worst.”
Fake It Till You Can Fake It On A Larger Scale (Various Artists)
For those who need a primer on Hanksy, I first happened upon his art on the streets of New York in 2011, where he superimposed actor Tom Hanks’ face over a rat, an image made famous by the street artist collective Banksy. It was extremely clever and I remember being delighted each time I ran into a new piece as he mixed street art, celebrity culture and puns in a way that I’d never seen before.
Kanye Brest (sic)
I wasn’t the only one to enjoy his art, and in less than one year, Hanksy was not only showing his art in the streets but also in galleries. Flash forward to 2015, where Hanksy obtained a vacant space in the Lower East Side and turned it into Hanksy-world. With lines around the block to get in for the duration of the 2 day event, once inside you were treated to quite a fun little scene.
TGIF / FML
The Gag-osian Gallery
There was art, not only by Hanksy, but by a host of hot street artists (such as Handed Wave, Frank Ape, Magda Love, Clint Mario, Gilf!, Hue, CB23, Don’t Fret, Lexi Belle, Nda, Elle, Roycer, Joseph Meloy, Beau, Claw Money, Tony Depew, and Col Walnuts) in a gallery within a gallery, appropriately called the ‘Gag-osian Gallery,’ but also, a DJ spun tunes, there was a photo booth, video games, a skateboarding ramp, a balloon artist who was making balloons shaped like penises for guests, free beer and dumplings!
Hanksy – Best of the Worst
Approximately 20 Hanksy originals were on display and very inexpensive prints were for sale as well.
Get Rich or Nye Tryin’
Doing It For the Likes
Because Hanksy’s identity is not disclosed to the public, he was able to wander about the gallery anonymously to enjoy seeing the fruits of his labor without being mobbed for selfies. He told me that it took about a week to set up and once the show is over, he has just a few days to take it all down. On the final day of the show, I was filming an Instagram video of the exhibit (“for 10 likes,” I joked, and as of press time, I was not wrong) and Hanksy reminded me that his suggestion to me via Twitter inspired me to sign up for an account. So for all of my great and not so great Instagram pix, blame Hanksy! Follow us both, just click on the links and hit follow!
Hamuel L. Jackson
To all the street artists out there that are just taking the most recognized images of famous icons and doing little to alter the image and then claiming the work as their own, “Best of the Worst” should serve as a nice little reminder of what bringing your A-Game looks like, or in this case – your H game. Well done, Hanksy!
Rated H for Hanksy
Photo and art by Carl “Screwtape” Paoli.
According2g by Carl Paoli
Wow! What an honor to be immortalized by the amazing artist Carl ‘Screwtape’ Paoli. Carl is a jack of all trades who has found success in Hollywood as a stuntman, is a film-maker and documentarian and he’s also an artist whose work has been shown in the streets as well as galleries all over the world. He presented me with a painting of myself this weekend and I am both thankful and humbled to be painted by such a great talent. Please visit his website (link will open in a new window) and follow him on Instagram at IM_Screwtape. He often posts time-lapse videos that document his paintings and they will blow your mind. Thanks again Screwtape!!! I am so honored!
Photos courtesy of Morley.
“If You’re Reading This, There’s Still Time.” by Morley. Out NOW!
Artist Morley has not only made the leap from the streets to galleries, but he can also add ‘Author’ to his list of career highlights. His first book “If You’re Reading This, There’s Still Time.” is out now! If you are unfamiliar with Morley’s work, you can remedy that by reading a Q&A Morley and I did in 2011 (wow, where does the time go?!) and you will instantly fall in love with his wit (and as a bonus, he sent us a photo of his cat Nelson wearing a sweater!). Morley’s art has been seen all over the world and he is equal parts Banksy and Steven Wright. Needless to say, I’ve loved his work for years and I am ecstatic about this book! Congratulations Morley!!!
IF YOU’RE READING THIS, THERE’S STILL TIME — MORLEY BOOK PROMO from Morley on Vimeo.
Morley on Tour!
Morley is embarking on a book tour (with unique free gift at each stop) and you will not want to miss your chance to meet him in the flesh.
The dates are as follows. Click on the above photo for more details.
4/19/14 Lab Art, Los Angeles, California
4/21/14 Skylight Books, Los Angeles, California
4/24/14 Book Soup, Los Angeles, California
5/1/14 Campfire Gallery, San Francisco, California
5/2/14 The Phoenix Theater/Copperfield’s Books, Petaluma, California
5/4/14 Powell’s Bookstore, Portland, Oregon
5/6/14 Elliott Bay Book Company, Seattle, Washington
5/9/14 The 11:11 Gallery, Tarzana, California
5/24/14 The Art in Public Panel, Tarzana, California
5/29/14 The Ivy Bookshop, Baltimore, Maryland
5/30/14 Atmosphere, Arlington, Virginia
5/31/14 Prarie Lights, Iowa City, Iowa
If you attend any of these events, tell him “According2G sent you.” And he’ll no doubt reply to you with “Who in the hell is that?”
“If You’re Reading This, There’s Still Time.” by Morley can be yours at this link (which will open in new window)!
Get it now and tell a friend!
Photos by G. Art by Jef Campion/Army of One.
“Adam and Eve” by Jef Campion aka Army of One
Castle Fitzjohns Gallery in New York is currently paying tribute to one of the art world’s fallen soldiers – Jef Campion aka Army of One. Campion’s most recognizable work as street artist Army of One was a message to give peace a chance, to stop violence and to end all war. On the streets of New York or Los Angeles, you could often see Diane Arbus’ iconic “Grenade Boy” image mashed up with messages of love and peace from Army of One.
Give Peace A Chance!
Jef Campion was more than an artist – he was also a firefighter, who was one of the first respondents in the 9/11 tragedy, and he worked tirelessly with the Ronald McDonald House to help sick children. Though in person Jef was one of the sweetest guys you’d ever want to meet, in private, he battled a lot of inner demons and Jef passed on in early 2014.
This exhibit showcases many pieces that his fans are familiar with, as well as many unseen works that show a completely different side of his art. During his life, he invited me to his studio many times, but our schedules could never coordinate and I am sad that I will never get to speak with him about these great works of art, most of which I was seeing for the first time at this retrospective exhibit.
Ball of Confusion
I’ve known Jef for several years and of course we bonded over having the same name (though different spellings) and we also lived in the same neighborhood, so I’d see him out and about at art functions and of course, his art is all over the streets of Los Angeles and New York, so his presence was always felt. This exhibit is a beautiful and touching tribute to a beautiful man. I hope you go see it. If you can’t make it, at least ponder Jef’s mission statement: Give Peace A Chance! Rest in peace, my friend.
Gone but not forgotten – Army Of One aka Jef Campion.
Castle Fitzjohns Gallery is located at 98 Orchard Street.
Photos by G. Art by Maya Hayuk.
Maya Hayuk Mural on Bowery and Houston
If you look closely, you can see the artist admiring her work.
Maya Hayuk Mural on Bowery and Houston