What The Heck?! Random Guy Buffs ESPO Mural

espo mural

Most people that follow the work of artist Steve Powers aka ‘ESPO’ know about the mural he painted in Philadelphia – off of Front Street, for the promotion of Philly musician, Kurt Vile’s album, “ Waking On a Pretty Daze”.

Well today this unknown guy took it upon himself to paint over the ESPO piece because he thinks “it attracted graffiti to the neighborhood” – you know the one rich in public art. The same neighborhood I toured during a TED WALK on the merits of Public Art.

From what our sources ascertained, he’s neither the property owner or employed by the city, nor might I add associated with any community initiative. After being asked to stop and being told that this was a commissioned piece by world renowned artist ‘ESPO’ – he replied that he didn’t’ give a s$#!. Oddly enough, he did leave without finishing, but he defaced enough it.

But seriously dude, why stop now? You almost wrecked it all… maybe because you stopped to think for more than two seconds to realize you don’t have the right to go around judging what art stays and what goes in our neighborhoods?

What a douche move… and by the way, now the wall looks like crap. Way to go – you accomplished what again?

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*photos thanks to Najeeb (@dasheikee) who happened to be driving by the mural when this went down.

Philly Artists CORNBREAD & Isaiah Zagar will speak at I AM HERE Artists Talk

Legendary Writer Darryl “Cornbread” McCray and Mosaic Artist Isaiah Zagar are scheduled to speak this Thursday, June 26th,  at a special Artists Talk in association with the I AM HERE exhibition currently up at James Oliver Gallery.

McCray and Zagar are expected to drive a lively discussion with stories on their many years of work and future endeavors.

Other artists in the exhibition are scheduled to join the discussion on the artists’ iconic work – and how their movements had an effect on the new generations contributions to this ever growing movement.


I AM HERE is a group exhibition presenting a phenomenal roster of six Philadelphia artists (Ishknits, Streetsdept, Kid Hazo, Joe Burochow, Cornbread, and Isaiah Zagar) whose individual passions represent a link back to the blossoming graffiti culture – to the burgeoning generational shift that is pushing us to stray away from using generic terms such as “street art” to define the diversity of artistic work.



Thursday, June 26th 7-9pm at James Oliver Gallery
James Oliver Gallery | 723 Chestnut Street | Philadelphia, PA 19106
Refreshments will be served!
View the I AM HERE exhibition pieces at shop.paradigmarts.org.



While everyone raved on about Banksys’ NYC residency, I’d taken up following French Street Artist, Levalet. My friends keep sending me snapshots of his work around Paris, since then I’ve been finding his treasures through his website and from his followers on Instagram. His black & white wheat pastes are fresh and playful – interacting with their surroundings in a way that continues to amuse me the way Banksy did in the past.














It’s like having an activist on the streets – but then again I think of most street artist with a message as such. It’s just that I’ve never seen one geared towards women in this way.

Brooklyn based artist,Tatyana Fazlalizadeh is peddling social activism into the realm of public art, addressing gender based street harassment. The Stop Telling Women to Smile street art features black & white portraits of women from multiple cultures sport strong powerful eyes that look out at the viewer as if they were speaking the messages from the posters aloud. Fazalaizadeh says “the project attempts to take women’s voices and faces and put them in the street – creating a presence for women in an environment where women are a lot of times made to feel uncomfortable and unsafe – outside in the street. ” There are real women behind these drawings who humanize Fazlalizadeh’s campaign – that so far, to my knowledge has just been seen in Philadelphia and Brooklyn.

But she’s on the move. With the successful funding of her recent KickStarter and the support of Hollaback and StopStreetHarassment.org: Baltimore, Atlanta, San Francisco, Miami, Kansas City, Los Angeles and Chicago stops are in the works.

If you can’t wait to see them in your neighborhood, you can look into participating in the campaign through the projects dedicated website.





 *pic 1,3 (philly found) courtesy Ginger Rudolph. pic 2,4,5 (brooklyn found) via Tatyana Fazlalizadeh website.


JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement

JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement with a Mural

Street artist, JR – known for his trademark B&W portraits that flank inner city communities – marked the 50th Anniversary of Civil Rights Activist, Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech by using real archived photographs from the Civil Rights Movement to create giant murals in the Sweet Auburn district of Atlanta, Georgia where King grew up.

King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech was delivered on August 28th, 1963 at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. to over 250,000 civil rights supporters.

JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement

JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement

JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement

JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement

JR Pays Tribute to the Civil Rights Movement

*Steven Blum’s photograph from the Poor People’s Campaign of 1968,courtesy Emory University’s SCLC collection, was turned into a 30-foot-by-40-foot mural at Auburn Avenue and Hilliard Street. Flip Schulke’s photograph from the 1963 March on Washington was turned into an 18-foot-by-35-foot mural at the corner of Edgewood Avenue and Hilliard Street. Elaine Tomlin’s photograph from the 1995 Million Man March, courtesy Emory University’s SCLC collection, is now a mural at Edgewood Avenue and Jessie Hill Drive.

via Creative Loafing where you can read Debbie Michaud’s Q&A with JR.

*Image credit: Dustin Chambers

Aspects of Urban Life


When street artist Cadu Confort emailed me pictures of his drawings that he said were inspired by “aspects of his urban life”, I admit I sighed before opening any of the attachments. We repeatedly hear these well-worn terms about what stirs an artist, but rarely do we get to see it. I suppose that’s the diplomatic way of my saying – ‘saying that doesn’t necessarily mean the accompanying work reflects that’. But the more we corresponded, the more I became interested in how his work correlated to the life in Brazil he so often mentioned.

“Would you be up for shooting some pictures to show our readers what inspires you?” I asked him.

 “Sure, it will be a pleasure and a challenge. Some of my favorite places are sometimes far from home … I’ll ride my bike through the city and shoot those pics.”

He warned me that he wasn’t a professional photographer and that his camera was “shitty.”  But a few weeks later I received photos that embody that oxymoronic term “pretty-ugly’” –  they are gritty, unfocused, random scenes that depict an honesty far beyond what I could have imagined from that now altered term “aspects of urban life.”  – Ginger

The message Cadu sent along with the following photographs…


“There’s a gap between what inspires me and what I do with these inspirations. It’s a little hard to relate the pics with the artwork directly, because there is a strange process in transforming what I see day by day into what I do. The imagery leads me to do the artwork. I got used to all the ugly and sketchy stuff you can find in a big city. So I try to transform all those things in something ”beautiful” or funny, but the real deal is that I can’t get rid of the ugliness, the cranky faces, the visual pollution and all those ”bad” things… especially because I live in Rio and I stay far from that colorful- beach-life-rich-nature-happy-people stuff!

There are some pretty sketchy places here in Rio, and they are usually my favorite places when it comes to aesthetics, but I had problems because it’s really not cool to shoot photos of it … at least here in Rio. It’s a shame because I’d really like to show you the “worst”(as people use to say) side of the city that I love. Stuff like having a hot dog and a good chat with old hookers in Copacaba, funny kids on the streets making fun of rich people. Drunk people. Bar life. This kind of stuff you can only find in the night of big cities.” – Cheers and Abraços, OBRIGADO !  



Abandoned Shopping Car

Abandoned Shopping Car

Afro Devil's Mattress

Afro Devil’s Mattress

Bad Grafitti

Bad Grafitti

Illegal Electric Wire

Illegal Electric Wire



Evil Saint

Evil Saint

Dirty Bar (Boteco)

Dirty Bar (Boteco)

Sheraton Hotel From The Bus

Sheraton Hotel From The Bus

King's Palace

King’s Palace

Lonely Security

Lonely Security

Rainy Ipanema

Rainy Ipanema

Way Back Home From The Bus

Way Back Home From The Bus


Wanna check out some of Cadu’s work …then click here.