Street art discoveries from Mexico, Canada and the US
Diego Fournier and the Collective Tres Zapotes "Ciudad Monstruo“
"Concrete Jungle" by Futura
In this photo collection, colleagues from the Goethe Institutes in Montreal, Los Angeles, Mexico City, New York City, Toronto and Washington, D.C. took photos of street art in their respective cities. We publish our finds in series that are assigned a general theme. We started with a series about our favorite pieces and the works of German artists in our cities.
The best art is on the street.
Street art is everywhere and speaks to everyone. It is full or void of color, loud or calm, gaudy or subtle and sometimes more queer than straight. Our new series Queer as Artsy Folk is about queer street art - by queer artists with attitude, mission and goal. Whether Homo Riot confronts the public with their homophobia or Hugo Gyrl sends the militantly encouraging You Go Girl through the continents - queer street art has many exciting facets. A few of them we show here.
The ubiquity of street art and the inexhaustible number of public walls, columns, telephone booths, subway trains, the fact that public space is exactly that – public – encourages (forces!) its use as a political medium. Street art as a means of protest, as an expression of dissatisfaction and demands for or against prevailing circumstances is as old as it is itself.
Not only since Banksy and other superstars in the political art scene has street art served a higher purpose. Our bloggers have devoted themselves to this phenomenon in this series - as always without the claim of completeness or representativeness. That would be impossible simply because of the large amount of great, relevant, exciting street art – and it wouldn't be fair either. That's why we've made a very personal selection to take a look at this world of political art – artivism in Los Angeles, Mexico, Montreal, New York, and Washington, D.C. – and to take a closer look at the world of political art.
Montreal from spring to autumn, that means festival season: for the past 5 years, solidly embedded between the Experimental Dance and Theater Festival Transamériques and the Montreal International Jazz Festival there is the international street art festival MURAL. Its visibility makes the festival one of the major events of the year - it takes place on the boulevard St-Laurent, the so-called "Main", one of the principle arteries of the city, the demarcation line between its eastern and western part and even without a festival one of the most dynamic streets of the metropolis. The organism MU ("Transformer Montréal en Musée à ciel ouvert" - Montreal becomes an open-air museum) also contributes to the city's diversity of exciting street art. In our Montreal city special, we present some of the works that have been produced over the last few years at the MURAL festival or with the support of MU.
Originally from Germany, Lord Jim lives with his wife and sons in Los Angeles where he also does the most damage.
His photos and musings on street art have been published in numerous books and articles. ( Most notably Stay Up - Los Angeles Street Art with author Jim Deichendt / Shepard Fairey Inc. by Jim Deichendt / Banksy - You are an acceptable level of threat by Carpet Bombing Culture, etc.) His sizable Street Art photo collections can be found on his Flickr pages. Lord Jim thinks that Banksy smells like soup.
Through the years, he has worked as a portrait photographer, documentary filmmaker, and graphic designer. He watches hundreds of films each year and has attended major festivals such as the Berlinale, Cannes, and Sundance. He is also Director of the San Joaquin International Film Festival, which he founded in 2008. An avid traveler, he has been to 60 countries around the world.