Back Against the Wall
Artist, curator and carpet curator Joseph Carini present a show of 20 gifted street artists whose work has been transformed into hand-woven tapestries.
Opens April 23 at the Carini Lang Showroom 335 Greenwich Street
February 2014: The creative director and artist of record at Joseph Carini Carpets [then known as Carini Lang], Joseph Carini collaborated with over 20 street artists to launch a unique show that transforms street art into woven tapestries/ wall hangings.
Carini is an artist who grew up in Brooklyn, attended Pratt Art School and then traveled around the world painting, sketching and falling in love with the beauty of hand woven carpets. But at heart he is a New York City boy, thus the impetus for the show 'Back Against the Wall' grew out of Carini's ongoing love affair with NYC. In 2011 when the foment of Occupy Wall Street was at its height, Carini began to photograph the street artist's responses. "This passionate art, this graffiti was about how art represents the voice of the individual against the system. The art stands in stark contrast to the Disneyfication of New York City." Carini fell in love with many of the images and artists' work on the streets and was compelled to collaborate. Carini utilized some unsanctioned images and had them woven into carpets as tests. "I wanted to win the artists over and I knew they had to see their work woven, not just hear the idea."
The result is an extraordinary collaboration with over 20 artists that created fifty unique carpets. These were handwoven in Nepal, by master artisans. The collection, called 'Back Against the Wall", will be on public display beginning April 23, 2014, in the Carini Land showroom, housed in a former bank, in TriBeCa. The artists range from some whose work is immediately recognizable like DAIN, BEAU, REA, ELLE, BEN EINE, ENX, JIM JOE and READER, to up and coming international artists like Third Wold Pirate and Stink Fish.
As an artist, Carini initially paints many of the designs he wants to see come to fruition in a woven tapestry. He then utilizes a unique method, of translating the images, which he perfected, to translate art into a woven template. Carini used this process and attention to detail to transform graffiti images into sumptuous carpets. "The artists told me to just do what I thought best after they saw the initial trials they were all in. It is difficult to take such layered images and create carpets, but the results are amazing. It's great when artists and artisans come together to make such remarkable work."