Having recently shown work side by side with some of the world’s most renowned street artists such as fellow Friscan, Twist, Kaws, Neckface, Space Invader, and Futura, San Francisco’s AKO is our top pick for the yet unpublished second generation heavies list. If there were a guaranteed recipe for success we think it would look something like this: outstanding talent, simmered with unique vision, stirred by pure passion, and all vigorously poured into a serious work ethic. We think that’s AKO’s recipe to the letter, and what’s more he serves it up fresh with an authenticity that’s particularly rare.
AKO empty objects
LA street artist, DJ, toy designer, musician, writer, philosopher, Shiro Fujioka does it all. And he does it well. He’s a contributing writer and photographer for Heads Magazine, he’s worked with Kid Robot, he DJs both solo and with the band Urban Assault, and he shows no signs of stopping there. To examine Shiro’s body of work requires a pretty big lens. The best we can hope to do is to give you a glimpse into the mind of the man and let you dig in from there.
Shepard Fairey on $elling out
It’s difficult to discuss street art at any length without covering the work of Shepard Fairey who is viewed by many as the Godfather of modern street art. Though he takes no credit for inventing the methods he’s employed over the past 17 years to spread his worldwide OBEY propaganda campaign, no one could reasonably argue the position that anyone has taken those methods to the level Fairey has. The argument begins as soon as the topic of selling out comes up. Has Shepard Fairey sold out? It’s a divisive issue and even the most objective observers when truly honest find themselves in one camp or the other. The American Heritage Dictionary defines a sellout as, “one who has betrayed one’s principles or an espoused cause,” and levelling that accusation at an artist is perhaps the most aggressive form of attack on an individual’s artistic integrity. Now that the OBEY coup has invaded mainstream department stores the sellout cries are louder than ever. To answer his critics, PEEL magazine asked Shepard to tell his side of the story...
How music saved my life
It all started as a little kid sitting around with the family listening to old records and experiencing music for the time. I knew early on that music is everywhere and truly was a part of my everyday life. As early as grade school I tried to study and learn about music. Then I found a very close connection between music and art. Something about combining audio with visual changed my everyday thinking. My everyday surroundings inspired my music and my music would inspire my art. I was making music and art and taking it back to the streets. Music has given me the chance to travel all around the world, it helps me when I’m down and makes a good day better.
Interview with Yoni Wolf
Highground bringing the power to burn
Graffiti fonts are nothing new. Historically they’ve been pretty wack in general due to the fact that a major element of real graffiti is how the letters flow together, something difficult to capture in a font. However, Highground Industries has been turning that around with their growing collection of authentic looking graffiti fonts. PEEL magazine digs the work they’ve been doing and asked them to share some thoughts on what they do.
Bisc1 aka BusyBisc1 - Below The Surface
From below the surface of New York City Busy Bisc 1 emerges with skill, style, and a serious need for movements. Alive off the pace of city blocks, his creative forces are used in all realms. From record art work for labels such as Definitive Jux, Nature Sounds, and Ninja Tune. To the release of his words over beats on New York’s block building label, Embedded Music (www.embeddedmusic.com), Bisc1 can be found in your town, on your walls and in your ears. His work had been played, performed, exhibited and distributed all over the globe, from The Queens Museum to the walls of Fat Beats in Amsterdam and back to the speakers banging in Hong Kong.
Flux da Wondabat
Live from BINKIS ISLAND here in Atlanta... I’m here today to interview FLUX da WONDABAT of the Binkis Recs! crew. Not only representing one of Atlanta’s fi nest hip hop groups, but Flux also creates fresh visuals for album covers, mad event fl yers, and dope tees. FLUX da WONDABAT participates in various themed art shows here in Atlanta such as “Art, Beats, & Lyrics”, “My Uzi Weighs a Ton”, “Men are Human Too”, and has been giving us “24 Reasons to Live”, a group show with other talented ATL artists each submitting a certain number of pieces totaling “24” works. He brings a style that is detailed and textured, both musically and visually. Here’s what he had to say about his music and art...
Venusian rockers Valient Thorr touched down to rock our planet for Warped Tour this summer. It may not be clear whether they’ve come from the past or the future, but one thing is absolutely certain, they’ve come to Rock. Right off the stage and dripping with sweat, Valient Himself, took some time to talk with us about the serious business of Rock and Roll as a catalyst, overcoming fear, and the absence of beards in Washington.
The plug unplugging the system
Belgian artist and Jungle Tactics - XL crewmember The Plug aka PNK One unplugs the status quo with a clever approach to creating street art that truly interacts with the environment. In addition to traditional graffiti he also creates works that transform uninteresting common objects and urban settings into challenging and thought provoking installations. Unique vision and execution distinguishes The Plugg’s street work from the increasing visual cacophony.
The robot assemblage creativity contest
The Robot Assemblage Creativity Contest from Sticker Robot and Zoltron invited artists worldwide to throw down for some epic prize packages including full color vinyl stickers of the winning designs, a full set of Mars-1 mini figures and other tasty treats from Strangeco, a subscription to PEEL, an autographed SEEN skate deck, an SFaustina signed copy of Blood Wars’ book, custom Pinpops of the winning entries, Fudge Factory odds and ends, t-shirts from Swobo and Zoltron, and killer sticker packs from Robots Will Kill.
Waleska spreading the love
London based Brazilian born artist Waleska Nomura has been improving public spaces with her work since 1998, in her own words, “Spreading the love and positive energy to the world.” Her whimsical characters beckon viewers into a parallel universe in which love, happiness, and colorful imagination rule, often in stark contrast to the dull, colorless, utilitarian spaces in which they are found.