If you haven’t gotten your fill yet after Singapore Art Week 2018, you can take a trip down to the ArtScience Museum Singapore for Art From The Streets, featuring some of the boldest works from a handful of the world’s most renowned and talented street artists including Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Futura, Invader, JR, Blek le Rat and Vhils!
Art From The Streets is a culmination of 40 years of Street Art, where exhibits speak of a countercultural attitude in today’s zeitgeist of conformism. Curated by Street Art expert and gallerist Magda Danysz, Art from the Streets is home to over 200 large-scale mural paintings, installations, videos, prints, archival material, drawings, and sketches, which showcase the soul and diversity of the urban art scene.
Visitors will get to see a very different side of the ArtScience Museum with Art from the Streets, in a show that charts the extraordinary evolution of Street Art from a daring and rebellious urban scene to a major international art movement. The show unfolds the evolution of street art from various artists through distinct techniques and styles weaved into technology.
Here’s a sneak peek of what art lovers can feast their eyes on at the exhibit!
Organised into six themed sections, the show begins by paying homage to “The Pioneers and the Masters”. Street Art started to gain prominence in early 1970s when stylised initials and signatures, known as ‘tags’, began appearing on the trains in New York. Artists such as Blade and Seen were considered to be the early masters of the urban art form. These artists developed unique styles and techniques which set the foundations of a new art form.
The second gallery, “The Advent of Message”, showcases the turning point of Street Art in the 1990s. Tags made of letters gradually gave way to more conceptual designs of icons, logos, and well-known faces. Street artists began to diversify their techniques and drew inspiration from other communities. Their messages in their works began to reveal greater reflection and thought on social issues.
“Stencil World”, explores the form of the urban signature and its history. With many public bodies cracking down on graffiti, stenciling became prevalent as it was a significantly quicker method to be used on the streets, marking a new chapter in the Street Art history.
The fourth section, “New Writings“, shows how emerging artists at the turn of the millennium began to create their own systems of writing and novel new kinds of typography. While the Street Art continued to evolve, new generations of artists still followed the principle of defining and refining their individual styles, whilst maintaining a collective culture.
The fifth section, “Art of the Context“, focuses on the reinvention of Street Art with the presence of urban environment in the genre. With public and institutional recognition rising, many street artists were able to make the streets their exhibition space. To stand out, artists relied on constantly renewing their practices while giving ever more attention to their surroundings. Each artist drew on timeless aesthetics and strong messages to make the walls speak. These pieces invite the passerby to reflect on the impact of the image, as well as sharing it with many others through social media.
Art from the Streets ends with “Getting Up“. In this final section, attention is drawn to the diverse and monumental works on repurposed surfaces. Drawing inspiration primarily from cities, street artists are producing imposing and unmissable art on public facades by meticulously cutting, pasting, weaving and stenciling. This renewed approach to the art form was a response to those skeptical about the future of Street Art.
Guest curator Magda Danysz, is an owner of three art galleries in her name located in Paris, Shanghai, and London, and is no stranger to Street Art! Her galleries have represented many street artists of her generation. In over 20 years, her memoir has expanded and encompassed original urban art specialism into mainstream fine art, including painting, Chinese contemporary art, and many others.
“Street Art is definitely the most important art movement that has emerged in the 21st century, and this show celebrates the vitality of this movement. It is also very important at this stage to be explicit about the history of Street Art. Now, with 40 years of history, the movement can be really be put into artistic perspective,” added Magda Danysz, guest curator of Art from the Streets.
In retrospect, it’s amazing how an act of defiance back in the 1970s US cities, has snowballed into a major international cultural movement. Art from the Streets brought to you by ArtScience Museum Singapore, seeks to chart this evolvement of Street Art, persuading you to recognise it as one of the most important artistic genres of the 21st century!
These artists have adopted different techniques and mediums to create their artworks, from stenciling, calligraffiti, painting, spraying to “upcycling” materials. The artworks are inspired by the ArtScience Museum galleries, and the various artists intend them as an address to a range of local and global issues.
Last but not least, look out for major new works by our very own local Singaporean artists, including Speak Cryptic, and Yok & Sheryo, as Art from the Streets accentuates Southeast Asia’s urban art. If not, create your own are at the “Express Yourself” station which appears at the end of the six sections of the ArtScience Museum gallery – who knows, maybe your Street Art will be the next big thing!
The Art From The Streets exhibition will until 3 June 2018. Tickets start from $12 for children and $17 for adults (with discounts for Singaporeans), with more information available here!
Gallery photos courtesy of Marina Bay Sands.