Posts Tagged ‘BAM’

STYLE WARS Screening at Pacific Film Archive – Nov 3rd, 2012

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

Starts at 8:15 p.m (Buy Tickets)

2575 Bancroft Way
Between College and Telegraph

One of the first films to document the emerging hip-hop culture, Style Wars journeys into the New York subway system’s vast gallery of graffiti art to present a unique portrait of the artist as an angry young man, rebellious, street-smart and strangely eloquent. We meet the writers, as they are called—Skeme, Seen, Iz, Kase, Cap, Crazy Legs, Frosty Freeze, et al—who risk jail to “get their names up,” as well as peripheral figures from cops to former Mayor Koch who try to analyze the work they can’t comprehend. A lively parallel is drawn between break-dancers, rappers, and train-yard artists.

Produced by Henry Chalfant. Photographed by Burleigh Wartes. Edited by Victor Kanefsky and Sam Pollard. (69 mins, Color, DigiBeta from 16mm, From Public Art Films)

JIM PRIGOFF Lecture on Graffiti – Next Friday

Monday, October 8th, 2012

Barry McGee installation in progress at BAM/PFA

Saturday, August 18th, 2012
On August 24, BAM will be opening their massive Barry McGee mid-career survey.

WHEN: August 24, 2012 – December 9, 2012

WHERE: Berkeley Art Museum – 2626 Bancroft Way


“Throughout his career,” writes Alex Baker in the exhibition catalog, “Barry McGee has continued to surprise and contradict expectations.” Including rarely seen early etchings, letterpress printing trays and liquor bottles painted with his trademark cast of down-and-out urban characters, constellations of vibrant op-art painted panels, animatronic taggers, and an elaborate re-creation of a cacophonous street-corner bodega, along with many new projects, this first midcareer survey of the globally influential San Francisco–based artist showcases the astonishing range of McGee’s compassionate and vivacious work.

McGee, who trained professionally in painting and printmaking at the San Francisco Art Institute, began sharing his work in the 1980s, not in a museum or gallery setting but on the streets of San Francisco, where he developed his skills as a graffiti artist, often using the tag name “Twist.” McGee’s use of this and other monikers—such as Ray and Lydia Fong—as well as his frequent collaborations can make it difficult to precisely situate the artist’s unique authorship. Using a visual vocabulary drawn from graffiti, comics, hobo art, and sign painting, McGee celebrates his Mission District neighborhood while at the same time calling attention to the harmful effects of capitalism, gentrification, and corporate control of public space. His often-humorous paintings, drawings, and prints—all wrought with extraordinary skill—push the boundaries of art: his work can seem refreshingly informal in the gallery but surprisingly elegant on the street.

McGee has long viewed the city itself as a living space for art and activism, but his more recent work has brought the urban condition into the space of the gallery. Increasingly, his installation environments express the anarchic vitality of the inner-city street, incorporating overturned cars and trucks, and often spill beyond the frame of the gallery or museum.

Photos by Peter Cavagnaro