Poster Art Paradise

The life of a street artist, at least when he/she is posting up some badass art, is a bit of a paradox sometimes. On the one hand, they are scouting out the darkest alleys and most abandoned streets and one the other they seek the most visible buildings and street signs.

Lucky for some of the inhabitants of Los Angeles, some street artists seek out both. So you can spot awesome street art when you’re driving or you can come across it where you least expect it.

The best is when you get lost. I’ve a penchant for getting lost as is obvious by some of these posts but it pays off when I stumble across walls like this one…

Somehow a group of street artists decided this was their wall. It probably started out with one poster and bloomed into the beautifully crowded wall you see here. There were funny phrases (the above wall has a poster near the bottom that says “You know I’m allergic to ugliness”), political statements and plenty of faces, both fictional and real.

If Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t legit enough, how about fictional detective Robert T. Ironside? “Ironside” was this show from the ’60s. I used to watch it all the time on KDOC; it’s basically about a guy in a wheelchair who nabs the bad guys. Legit.

The political messages were pre-tty clear.

It was a fairly large wall and almost every inch of it was covered…

There were a few pieces that especially caught my eye. This one looks very much like a Banksy piece…

Shepard Fairey‘s face was also looking out from all the posters…

I took some closer shots to peek at some posters a little closer.

I saw this guy at the Mr. Brainwash show not too long ago! Though I didn’t post the photo because it wasn’t great. But apparently this guy likes to travel.

Not even the dumpsters were safe.

See that bright pink spot on the left?? That’s another guy that kept popping  up everywhere…

There was a really huge awesome piece that I later found was done by Cryptik, an artist who creates pieces with his own type of calligraphy.

As I kept walking I noticed some pieces on the floor too…

It looked like that giant hand said ‘count the wavs.’ Clever, no?

The funniest piece was this Banksy one…

Thankfully there weren’t any barking dogs around.

So there you have it, a good 30 minutes spent snapping pics of art that randomly jumped out at me while I was walking. I got lost on purpose because I wanted to find some good art and thankfully I found quite the street art hot spot before I found my way back.

Exit Through the Parking Lot

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Disclaimer

I’ve got to give a shout-out to a friend of mine for this post! We were on a photo shoot for a project of hers and she actually found this in the parking lot where her car was. 

I snapped some pics with my camera but that camera has been quite loopy as of late and I seem to have lost the photos I took. So she took some for me. The one below is all hers! Check out her stuff – she’s an awesome artist. 

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The best street art surprises you even in the spots where you least expect it. In this case, an art piece was cleverly placed in a Downtown Los Angeles parking lot – the type where you can pay four or so dollars for a spot that will last you a few hours while you go about your mischievous business.

Speaking of being mischievous, one of the names that almost always pops up when talking about street art is that of Banksy, an English artist with quite a reputation.

He basically creates stencils and spray paints them on any surface possible. His pieces are almost always politically charged in some way shape or form. He even got away with sneaking a blow-up doll of a Guantanamo Bay prisoner into Disneyland. Skills.

Initially, my friend and I thought this piece was his and I found some evidence that it is!

This is what we encountered in the parking lot…

His shading is pretty distinctive and he often incorporates movement – like the movement of the little girl’s hair. He’s also created other pieces in which he changes words; in this case, PARKING becomes PARK. Clever, no? Apparently he left it behind when he attended a screening of his film “Exit Through the Gift Shop.” (Highly recommend it).

Check out some of his work. It’s really quite intriguing.

One of my favorite quotes from him is about the nature of graffiti art from his book “Wall and Piece.”

“The people who truly deface our neighbourhoods are the companies that scrawl their giant slogans across buildings and buses trying to make us feel inadequate unless we buy their stuff…. Well, they started this fight and the wall is the weapon of choice to hit them back.” 

What do you think about this whole issue?

P.S. Banksy’s people: If you come across this post, tell the man I’m a huge fan, yeah?