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Snapshots: Street Art in Brooklyn

Get off any stop along the L train and you will be consumed by graffiti art. From tags to large scale murals, graffiti is a movement that will continue to serve as a voice to and for individuals. In essence, communities as a whole are visualized on the wall. Messages may vary:

Anonymous Halsey Street

Anonymous
Halsey Street between Wyckoff Avenue and Irving Avenue

Vans Advertisement Metropolitan Ave

Vans Advertisement
Metropolitan Ave and Roebling

 

A few weeks ago now, I decided to take a walk from my home, near the border of Ridgewood and Bushwick to Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  Walking along where the L runs, I  began to observe words and images sprawled across the surface of the wall and documented them with my camera.  Looking through these visual narratives now and some research aside, networks of creatives and subcultures became apparent, through the variety of street art along each subway stop.

I was, after the fashion of humanity, in love with my name, and, as you educated people commonly do, I wrote it everywhere.
-Goethe

For the sake of discussion I have selected three areas along the train line to delve further into.  First is Bedford Avenue and Lorimer Street.  These two stops are the first into Brooklyn, where a strip of shops, bars, cafés, restaurants and venues of the variety pulse day and night.  In addition to the regular tag name and wheat pasting, what stood out to me was the use of graffiti art as a form of advertising.  Just above is a Vans Advertisement for their Off the Wall campaign.  Below are two advertisements in close proximity to another, both painted on the corners of cross streets along Bedford Avenue.

Adult Swim advertisement Bedford Avenue

Adult Swim advertisement
Bedford Avenue and North 6th Street

 

Mural Outside of Dunkin Donuts Bedford Avenue

Mural Outside of Dunkin Donuts
Bedford Avenue and North 7th Street

Between Morgan Avenue and Jefferson Street, a lot of the graffiti art that took up the walls of industrial buildings and warehouses this past summer seem to have changed.  Local and international street artists are invited by Joe Ficalora, founder of Bushwick Collective, to fill up wall space.  Ficalora was interviewed by the New York Times in late August of this year, discussing how he watched this part of Brooklyn change considerably from what it had been in his childhood.

I figured, lets just hang some art on these walls
-Joe Ficalora, founder of Bushwick Collective

348 Troutman Street, Brooklyn NY Bushwick Collective

348 Troutman Street, Brooklyn NY
Bushwick Collective

 

The Yok & Sheryo Troutman Street between Wyckoff and Irving Avenue

The Yok & Sheryo
Troutman Street between Wyckoff and Irving Avenue

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Cost & Enx
Troutman Street between Wyckoff and Irving Avenue

Closer to home, Halsey Street marks the site of a new community project, Halsey St. Dreamway.  Bushwick artist Moira Williams was awarded $3,000 for a start up grant from the Citizens Community for New York City.  Their mission is, “create presence in an unsafe subway exit and walkway on Halsey Street.” [1]  In early November, murals seemed to pop up over night, each artist featured is from the Bushwick community.

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Couch alongside the sidewalk on Halsey Street.

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Layering of old and new graffiti work.

 

Bulletin for upcoming events within the community.

Bulletin for upcoming events within the community.

An archive of street art is layered on the walls with paint from Bushwick to Williamsburg.  As these communities continue to evolve, through time, new faces will walk the streets and contribute to this history.

 




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