Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday is Graffiti Day, vol. XVIII

Today I took advantage of a painting opportunity I could not pass up.

Carlos Gomez is a main thoroughfare through the center of the city, it is also very close to my house. Painting spots on this street are highly sought after, and there is graffiti in every available spot. But occasionally, new spots appear- and if you're quick, you can grab them. That's what I did today.

In this case, it wasn't that an old painting got painted over by the city, or the owner of a building, but rather that a new wall was created where before there hadn't been one. This was at a spot that used to be a deposito, where one could buy sand and cement and ceramic blocks for construction. They had a big gate that a truck could be backed up into. I used to buy lots of sand and cement from them when I was working on my house. A couple years ago they closed up. And a couple weeks ago, they took out the big gate and built a wall in its place. That's what I painted.

And this is what I painted:

Four dancing monsters, just in time for Carnaval. This is on one of the main Carnaval routes, and they are headed in the same direction as the parade will be going. This was not by accident. If this looks like it was done from a 30-second sketch, that's because it was. That's how I roll.

The surface I had to work on was very rough, the kind of rough-finished cement that is done by flinging the cement through a screen if I'm not mistaken. Not the easiest surface to work on, but in some ways ideal for spray paint. Why? First off, because this is what spray paint was made for. Spray paint doesn't care about nooks and crannies, it just sprays on. What ended taking me forever was not the sprayed part, but the background, which I first tried to roll on and then finished with a brush. Brushes don't like nooks and crannies. Another advantage is that spray paint almost never drips on a surface like this. And the final advantage? It's way too rough to glue a poster over- something us graffiteiros have been suffering from lately. Other artists won't paint over us, even the pichadores (taggers) generally leave us alone. But these bastards who glue up big posters for events don't give a shit, here's an example:

This painting was practically brand new when it got pasted over the first time. Kinda sucks to spend a whole afternoon and R$100 or more in paint to have some dildo come along and advertise right over the top of it. I'm wanting to do more wheat paste stuff to go over these guys.

When I was done the people who own the restaurant across the street wanted to know why I didn't paint the whole wall, going over the old and beat up paintings next to mine. I explained that we don't go over each other, and I didn't explain that the paintings next to mine are by the bad-boy of Salvador Graffiti and his wife- despite his seemingly innocent cartoon-like paintings of silly robots he's known to be happy to resolve disputes with his fists, or other weapons - he's also about the only guy who will go over other people's graffiti. He's done it to me. You can't really see his piece, it's hidden behind the wood in this picture:

Finally, boys and girls, use your mask when you paint! You can't see it all that well in this picture, but this is a plastic cup I was testing my paint on:

The paint melted it on contact. Imagine what that it do to your alveoli. Which is why I must protest the spray paint manufacturers who put the nice vanilla smell in their paint- that paint should smell bad, because it's not good for you.


Seth said...

That looks like quite the project Mark -- very cool, Hope the Brazilian summer is treating you well.


markuza said...

Thanks Seth- yesterday I had the pleasure of seeing the piece in the middle of Carnaval- I should get out there with a camera to take another picture. The summer is HOT