I Heart Haters!

Well, no. We don’t really. But we do like this tank top, perfect for those long summer days spent skating in the sun. Especially if you’re a misanthrope, the fashionable kind.

The shirt comes in white, black, and grey with purple, red, and blue hearts respectively. But don’t get too attached to your chosen color choice, the website warns: “Color ways of shirts, hats, and decks are subject to supply. You can suggest your preference in color, but don’t be surprised if it is out of stock.”

In other words, we hope you like surprises.

“Cake” by Keepaway

Imagine a drug trip experienced wholly through the lenses of prism glasses while people play with puka shells and die all around you. Good times?

Apparently if you’re Keepaway, then yes. These three gents know how to put on the weirdest show of our lives, we’ll say that much. Nevertheless, although the video strongly resembles the results of some low-tech editing software and a high school backyard band effort, the song is surprisingly subtle.

With moments that head toward hip hop and a consistent return to reggae beats with an overlay of MGMT-esque synth pop, the tune is catchy in weird ways. Although it may not be the most impressive video we’ve seen this year, it has odd staying power.

Street Art in China Gaining Spaces

Citizens of China have been bombing the Great Wall since before the early 2000s, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that urban art really burst onto China’s mainland. Galleries opened in Hong Kong focusing on street art, and the movement appeared to be gaining popularity, but according to Art Info.com, all of the indoor spaces dedicated to Krylon in Hong Kong have since closed.

Galleries in most cities may not have the money to produce staying power but the scene is still gaining ground. Writers continue to tag and spray in an area less accepting of street art than the Western Hemisphere.

How do writers in China get around police state tactics and censorship? They keep it clean, so to speak. The work in China is related to people’s lives, and leans more towards fashion according to the Sunday Morning Herald. Less rebellious and confrontational, the work doesn’t focus on politics, and is done on legal walls (for the most part, of course).

Street art is prevalent in cities like Shanghai, Beijing, Chongqing or Hong Kong. Walls in these cities where graffiti is legal are often still painted or cemented over—or even worse, torn down for construction.  The Moganshan Road, a back-to-back wall was a well-known spot in Shanghai dedicated to legal art that has since perished for business development.

Keeping a piece burning, isn’t easy, even on legal walls. The art in most cities is made by only a handful of writers. According to the Atlantic Cities, “Out of a city [Beijing] of more than 22 million only about 30 people call themselves graffiti writers here, and only about 15 of them actively “tag” walls around the city at night.”

With so few writers in large and populous cities with buffers constantly on the prowl, it’s no wonder the paint doesn’t stick. “When we’re doing street spots at night, everything gets erased almost immediately,” Dezio, a French writer in Shanghai says, “I’ve even had times where the next day I came back to take a picture and the wall had been cemented over.”

The citizens of China appear to have an interest in street art and graffiti, even though many writers are from other countries around the world. According to Talk Magazines, most of the prolific artists in Shanghai are expatriates, and in 2007, the wall on Moganshan Road had only four pieces done by Chinese writers.

Even with support from Chinese citizens and foreign writers, the work isn’t gaining interest from large buyers, according to Art Info.com. Collectors tend to stick to more conservative pieces while forking over large sums of money, causing many of the galleries in Hong Kong to close.

Some writers have had the opportunity to produce large scale pieces by going the commercial route on restaurants and corporate buildings, but most writers in China will just have to be content with a scene still gaining ground, and the legal walls their city is willing to provide.

Sources: Art Info.com, Sunday Morning Herald, Atlantic Cities, Talk Magazines Images by: Oinonio, Mayu Shimizu

“The Cigarette Duet” by Princess Chelsea feat. Jonathan Bree

If you’ve ever been in a fight over a cigarette – a scrap because your sig. other demanded that you give up your beloved pastime – then you can probably get down with this song.

Although the subject of the song is hella relatable, the music video and its one minute intro tested our patience. When Princess Chelsea pulls the thermometer out of the hot tub, she’s not the only one looking for something else to do. At one point, Bree’s eyes moving through his sunglasses are the only action going on in the shot, and it’s at this point where we started thinking about those minutes we’d never get back.

Distaste for the music video aside, the stirring melody and simplistic lyrics are catchy enough to make us hit repeat (while skipping the intro), more than once. The duo’s voices complement one another dynamically, Bree’s deep voice next to Princess Chelsea’s pitch that nearly mimics the creepy melody.

Surprisingly addicting, the lyrics in this song are dead-on, especially when Bree sings: “It’s just a cigarette, soon it will be ten.”

Copyright

Copyright’s art draws the eye like a black hole or a murder scene might draw the eye … forcefully and with a great deal of fascination. His pieces incorporate lots of color and pattern, but not gratuitous amounts, while his subjects often embody fear and beauty simultaneously.

We were relieved to hear him say that he enjoys playing with people’s perceptions, and that we weren’t the only ones who found his work, if amazing, slightly perplexing. “It often fascinates me how different people interpret the same painting in completely different ways,” he said. “I often add deliberately ambiguous icons and symbols to encourage this effect.”

Though the London street artist has no formal training in painting, he did study photography and video in school. His mediums of choice are spray paint and acrylic, though he sometimes incorporates mixed media. Like so many of the artists we talk to, oil paints are still a challenge that he hopes someday to master. Still, “one thing always leads you to the next,” he said. “The progression of my career as an artist has been very organic and natural,” he added, just like the progression of his paintings.

When looking at his work, he said, “I hope people feel moved in the same way as listening to a song.”

“Radio Song” by Danny Brown

Though his images are rather obvious and his lyrics not quite genius, Danny Brown’s “Radio Song” still takes a subtle but excellent stab at the industry today.

Lyrics like “The game’s so trendy, that’s why this label fails/Cause they don’t care about music, just first week sales” are accompanied with simple images of multiple Dannys rapping, dancing, walking, and talking against a pitch-black background. Statements like “She wanna ride the wave/Watch me do my swag surf” are unapologetically accompanied by crashing waves.

While the beat is good and the lyrics interesting, we suspect the video’s positive reception has more to do with the screw-y’all attitude that inspired this piece in the first place.

Painting and Pottery: Dan Baldwin

The befuddling clashes of imagery and color that compose Dan Baldwin’s paintings and pottery make for heady viewing. Most of the images, on their own varying from third-grade classroom appropriate to biker gang-style, are oddly discordant when piled one on top of the other in a profusion of line and hue.

The artist, who received formal training starting in 1990 at the Eastbourne College of Art and Design and then the Kent Institute of Art and Design, Maidstone, told us he took the long road to becoming a full-time artist.

“In 2006 I took the leap, but I’d been selling and exhibiting for years,” he said. “Not many people would be prepared for 16 years but that time was crucial for development.”

The artist, who is known for his beautifully hectic renderings of childlike themes, has spent the last year working purely with ceramics, a medium he’s wanted to perfect for about 6 years now, he said. For those projects he works with photography 3D clay casting, pure gold, lustres, precious metals, and more.

When he paints, on the other hand, it’s canvas, emulsion, aerosol, and often mixed media with silkscreen. The only medium he doesn’t have time for is oil paint. “They dry so slowly,” he said. “I need paint to dry fast so I can build up layering – ceramic paint dries so fast, it’s the opposite.”

According to this self-described workaholic, one of the best parts of being an artist is setting his own schedule, though that does mean he can never leave his work behind at the end of the day. “It never reaches a satisfaction point,” he said. “You end one work and then think, ‘Right, the next one I’ll do this.’ That’s why artists don’t retire.”

At least, that’s why Baldwin isn’t retiring. That, and he enjoys the fact that his work can trigger a response no matter what the age of his viewer. His art is a study in contradictions, he said, a dialogue between different themes. He points out that the obvious one is between life and death, but there also exist motifs of harmony, nature, war, religion, love, science, and decay, blending into one another so seamlessly that it is hard to tell where one ends and another begins.

His final words? “I love the subtle edge between innocence and death.”

“Oblivion” by Grimes

“Oblivion” from Grimes’ third studio album Visions is eerie yet captivating, a mismatched mishmash of image and sound that seem utterly strange in each other’s company. The heavy synth and her angelic baby-doll voice are equally surprising when paired together, but nonetheless enchanting.

In the music video, Grimes (Claire Boucher) hangs out in a locker room with body builders and at a dirt-bike rally, certainly not the visuals we expected from dark-leaning lyrics that include the lines “Cause when you’re really by yourself/it’s hard to find someone to hold your hand” and “I see you on a dark night.”

RedBall in Abu Dhabi


RedBall, which has so far visited such hallowed cities as Taipei, Norwich, Toronto, and Chicago, made its most recent stop in Abu Dhabi, where it had the distinction of forming “the first street art installations in the country,” according to project leaders. The video, being released today, chronicles the thirty-day journey that took place this winter in such exotic locations as The Sheikh Zayed Bridge by Zaha Hadid to the Empty Quarter of the Western Region.

Man in the City

John Sauvé, well-known American sculptor, is once more beautifying landscapes with his Man in the City project. Marked by the iconic red silhouette worked in steel, this project first found a home across rooftops in Detroit’s Harmonie Park.

Now Sauvé is busy making additions to the public art of New York City’s Governor’s Island, until 1995 an active Coast Guard post and now a public attraction. Since late last summer the sculptor has been on site, supervising the installation of another giant series, which have also made appearances in New York City’s High Line and in front of Chicago’s Merchandise Mart.

Governor’s Island can expect several dozen of the imagination-capturing sculptures in all, which will go a long way to beautifying a landscape recently returned to the people of New York.

Keith Haring at the Brooklyn Museum

If you thought you scored big back in the day when you discovered your older sister’s diary and mined it for blackmail, then get yourself to the Brooklyn Museum, fifth floor. There you can peep on pages straight from the rarely seen journals and sketchbooks of a young Keith Haring, and catch a glimpse of the early brilliance that inspired the evolution of street art as we know it.

The show is the first large-scale exhibition that explores Haring’s early career. In addition to archival objects such as sketchbooks and experimental videos, there are about 155 works on paper, including 30 of Haring’s iconic black-and-white subway drawings. Haring was no stranger to damp cell floors, and spent plenty of nights locked up for his below-ground work, done in chalk on black pieces of paper and used to cover old advertisements.

Editio Media had the opportunity to review the exhibit earlier this month, and was struck by the unique life in every piece. Though Haring lost his battle to AIDS in 1990, his legacy lives on through his work, which birth to a fantastic world that celebrates life and glorifies unity, but challenges it’s viewers to consider the dangers of becoming just another (empty) body in the crowd.

I am interested in making art to be experienced and explored by as many individuals as possible with as many different individual ideas about the given piece with no final meaning attached. The viewer creates the reality, the meaning, the conception of the piece. I am merely a middleman trying to bring together ideas.

—Keith Haring, journal entry, October 14, 1978

“Kick Out The Epic Motherfucker” by Dada Life

Dada Life, the Swedish electro house duo, held nothing back when it came time to lay down the electro beats in their song, “Kick Out The Epic Motherfucker.” The vocals and the beats ride alongside each other, neither overpowering the other, while scattered in time throughout the song.

During the most upbeat sections, Office Space-style smashing of a printer and everything else you can imagine (even ballsy destruction of a guitar and drum kit) provide a matching visual during the music’s most “epic” moments.

INSA Completes Largest Painting in Los Angeles

Back in April, INSA, the street artist known for splashing his designs not only on walls, but on women’s shoes, called out for help from his followers. He needed 12 supporters to buy this artwork in order to ship him off to Los Angeles where he would give a building in the downtown district a much needed facelift.

INSA’s artwork sold out in five minutes, and he was on his way that week. Those contributors, who bought INSA’s unique series of paintings on paper, can find their names mixed within the design.

This massive project covers the building back-to-back, making it currently the largest mural in L.A. at 9,300 square feet. The building houses the Art Share L.A. organization, a non-profit dedicated to making art more accessible. The abundance of mismatched windows that cover the building end-to-end are thankfully swallowed by INSA’s detailed work.

The photographer behind these shots is Birdman, known for his photography of street art and galleries.

Bleeps in Athens

The work Bleeps stamps out is heavily concentrated in life and death and fundamental subjects involving everyday living. The use of poetry, words, and thoughts in written form are used to engage dialogue between fans of street art, artists, and possibly clueless passersby.

Bleeps faces many of the same adversities that other street artists face: finding a space, the fuzz, and being involved in activism, even though he jokingly says “washing brushes afterwards,” can be one the most difficult aspects.

Back in 2003, Bleeps moved to the U.K. for school, and was inspired by the work of 3D and Inkie. Although having received some art training in Greece and Bristol, Bleeps doesn’t consider those experiences formal training. Since then Bleeps has been making a living by way of “irrelevant” jobs and uses art to express philosophical quests, rather than as a form of income.

Using a technique of whatever materials work best – markers, sprays or acrylics, and a mixed technique based on free painting and stencils – Bleeps creates these thought provoking pieces.  He said he sees his work as “an opportunity to document the present and pass it to future generations, interpreted through my perception,” Bleeps says.

ASHES 57 Solo Exhibition

The elaborate fantasy worlds of ASHES 57 created from black poster marker and white paper will be on display for a solo exhibition and after party presented by Lucid London (collective of DJs, producers and artists) and the London-based Rhythm Factory. The opening is a part of the Rhythm Factory’s Monthly Exhibition Series and will continue throughout June.

ASHES 57’s black and white line drawing series have been influential in the underground electronic music scene, and are also influenced by it, often integrating records, mixing boards and flying cassette tapes, within the busy nightscape of each piece.

For the opening ASHES 57 has created a 24-foot mural and a new screenprint called Brick Lane Zoo. The party starts June 7 and will run from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. at the Rhythm Factory.

Vans Phone Case for iPhone 4G or 4GS

When you spend a grip load of money on an iPhone, you obviously want to protect it. Vans had Apple junkies in mind when they created the Vans Phone Case for iPhone 4G or 4GS. This flexible case has a replica waffle sole on the back and the well-known red heel tag on the side. Vans even worked in the toe cap replica on the top of the case. The only foreseeable issue might be that it’s made from flexible rubber, which doesn’t exactly slide in and out of a pocket with ease, but you know what they say: Pain is beauty.