Sunday, March 09, 2014

MENO, ewok, Bisco, and Will - Graffiti Artists At Innovation Lab

I've been posting now and then about graffiti and graffiti artists.  The film Exit Through The Gift Shop gave me some sense of graffiti artists and I've paid more attention to what I see on the streets.  I get curious about who the people are, why they are using public
spaces to put up their messages. 

When I went to the Innovation Lab to meet its director Darla Hane, she told me that graffiti artists were coming.  While I was there they began showing up carrying work.

Arielo Taylor (Bisco)  and ewok were the first two to bring stuff in - their own and others.

Arielo (Bisco) Taylor's spider and wolf

ewok's work

There was some talk about what graffiti actually is.  Is it still graffiti if it's done on wood or canvas and hung on a wall  instead of spray painted on?  What about stencils?  Stickers?  Tags? 

This isn't the first time these artists have had their work displayed indoors like this, but they thought this was probably the biggest collection of graffiti art in Anchorage.

MENO's work

I recognized the name MENO immediately.  I'd seen it around town.  And there was a MENO piece at an Out North event, and I asked if he were around.  But he wasn't.

MENO showed up later at the Innovation Lab. 

And he was ok with me taking a picture.  He doesn't work on public walls since he was arrested and paid a fine of over five thousand dollars.  His signature is very distinct and easy to read.

One of the other artists there was Will.  The eye was inked on paper and then Will cut out all the white areas.  I've seen very good Chinese paper cut art, but this was something else altogether. [Note, font for "Will's Eyes" from fontmeme.]

Here are some of his works there (in addition to the eye).  I immediately assumed the picture in the lower left was a self-portrait and Will confirmed that.

It's clear to me that these guys aren't just guys with spray cans.  They have a real sense of art.  I'd encourage Anchorage folks to drop by the innovation lab at Loussac - 4th floor where audio/visual used to be - while this stuff is up.  And it's for sale.

And try to find Darla and see how you can use or be of use to the lab. 

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