Urban Art Preview – Banksy, Ben Eine, Swoon, Nick Walker & friends
The immediate impression of Urban Art is that it is irreverent, garish, and, often enough wonderfully, subversive. The street becomes the artist’s studio and the public space the gallery for an art form that in every respect breaks with all conventions – and is continually gaining fans. In only five weeks, 150,000 visitors have seen Banksy’s darkly eerie Disneyland parody, “Dismaland.” So there is no question the British artist is also the center of attraction in Kronsbein Gallery, which began focusing on Urban Art in 2016.
From February 18 to April 7, the Urban Art Preview will be presenting, along with the much-sought after works of the Great Unknown Artist, a unique cross-section of the art scene that include Ben Eine, an old veteran of London Street Art, who is known for spraying individual alphabet letters on shop shutters, and fellow artist, Nick Walker from Bristol, who went viral on the media with a “Moona Lisa” presenting her bare backside to us – that, as well, can be seen in the gallery. The multitalented American, Shepard Fairey, easily shifts between genres and first thrilled the people of Munich this summer with a 15 by 13 meter (590.6 by 511.8 in) mural, “Paint it Black,” in Landshuter Allee. By the way, it is owned by the state capital, Munich, which is, in any case, a great place for Street Art.
The American Swoon – one of the genre’s few women – has made a name with her distinctive cut-outs. The duo, Jasmin Saddiqui and Falk Lehmann, Herakut for short, not only beautify the sides of buildings but also refugee camps. And Os Gemeos (twins) make huge flashy appearances in Brazil with an entourage that sometimes look like something born of Hieronymus Bosch’s imagination.
With such Street Art celebrities, there is a need for an antithesis. Or at least one like Jean-Michel Basquiat, who has never considered himself to be a graffiti artist. Nevertheless, the prematurely-deceased Afro-American is one of the key trendsetters of Urban Art. Exhibited works like “Ernok” or “Jawbone of an ass” make it abundantly clear why.
The exhibition brings together to Munich a variety of trends in Street Art that are in demand internationally. In this respect, this “get together” also offers an inspiring addition to an active local community.