REVIEW: Pasta Oner – Man on Fire
11/29/2013 - 1/5/2014
Chemistry Gallery, Prague
Could one possibly add anything innovative, what has not been repeated yet, about Pasta – the icon of Czech graffiti and street art – and his latest exhibition in his home territory the Chemistry Gallery? Tough challenge, but let me have a try.
What I’m going to write about is his truly ravishing second solo show in the Chemistry Gallery, introducing us to Pasta’s pieces shot in the last two years. One might feel a little puzzled by the considerable hotchpotch of images, themes and techniques, lacking a common storyline if compared to his previous Peep Show exhibition. There, the underlying idea was easy to spot. Nevertheless, all the current exhibits abound in wit and jauntiness.
The exhibited pieces of Pasta Oner – all BTW sold within a few days after the opening - are balancing on a thin edge between kitsch and pop-art. He keeps to his original graphic art background. His use of script and graphic art techniques is flawless. We shouldn‘t grumble about the simplification of his work by pre-printing the canvass underlay. Nowadays it is a common technique used by many artists.
Looking for the underlying theme of the exhibition we might turn to the world of cartoons. We might be guided by notorious Mickey Mouse – coming to life, or at least his well-known glove, on many canvasses. Mickey entertains the visitors especially in the last room, dedicated to recycled pawnshop paintings. Pasta adds Mickey to second hand paintings you may buy in any street market. We meet Mickey adoring a holy scene or adding flowers to the bouquet in a still. We even run across amusing items recalling Pasta’s previous ‘Peep Show’ exposition such as a Lego figure wearing a latex suit or a teddy bear with a gag in his mouth.
The thing to be especially praised is Pasta’s mastery in the use of script. One could take it for granted, especially with a legend of the Czech street art. Nevertheless, the technique of using the script he presents at this exhibition is worth discussing. Not forgetting to mention the series of screen printed small canvasses I would like to highlight his famous technique of engraving in the aluminium foil. Moreover, Pasta introduces us to a brand new technique of ‘glittery script‘, in which the shapes of individual letters and objects are sprinkled over with glitters that are usually used as a cheap decoration of the nail extensions. Let’s hope for the early arrival of more, possibly even bigger format variations of the three series of these graphic art pieces executed in this innovative technique, which were instantly sold at the exhibition.
Another memorable part of the show is dedicated to Pasta’s 3D objects. Unmistakably noticeable is the burning VW with flames radiating from its windows or the just triggered fire extinguisher. His technique of cutting and shaping of the polystyrene, which is then sprayed on in colour is brought to perfection there. The most amusing exhibit is probably an object called ‘Inside the Gamble’- an aquarium full of real fish made of the gambling machine glass shields.
The plethora of Pasta Oner’s stunts is definitely worth the visit. It is a great source of inspiration not only for the community of graffiti/street artists. Leaving the exhibition hall you are confronted with a mural art asking you Impressed and a picture of clapping hands. I readily join the applause. Mainly to the sense of humor with which Pasta’s pictures and objects are created. What to add, just my envy for the new owners of his pieces.
Graffiti Walls for iPhone now available on App Store
It took us almost 2 incredible years of development, we’ve been through lots of changes and mistakes, we got accelerated in Boston and there we are - Graffiti Walls finally made its way to the iOS App Store.
If you can’t wait, go on and grab your copy of Graffiti Walls for iPhone on App Store now. And if you’re curious why it took so long, keep reading.
Ship fast, iterate later - not
You wouldn’t believe that, but Graffiti Walls started off as an iPhone app in the beginning. Soon we realized we need a network backend, so we built a simple web app to upload pictures. Then we added the map. Then we added a social features. Then we switched technologies from PHP to Ruby on Rails. Then we launched. You guess right, we had absolutely no idea what we’re doing.
Meanwhile, we learned that reliability is a rare commodity - as the various iOS developers started and failed to build the app we wanted to build and use, it looked like almost never-ending story. Not to mention that our main goal was to deliver solid app that is a pleasure to use. So the months passed. ‘Ship fast, iterate later’ was truly something we should have known earlier.
On the positive side, our iPhone app is capable of everything you’re used to. Discover art around you, browse pictures as they are added by the community, watch your favorite places and upload flicks as you go.
We’re not a company, we’re people like you and this is what we love to do whenever we can. We put a lot of effort and time to our beloved app, so we hope that you will enjoy it as much as we enjoyed building it.
Graffiti Walls Team
Current state of Graffiti Walls for iPhone
The good news is - the app exists and we’re ready for beta testing. It took us almost a year, three completely different iterations, but since we’re doing it all in our spare time, we think that the hard work and lot of time put into development was worth it.
This is the part where you come in! We are looking for individuals willing to roam their neighborhoods, test the app in the wild and report back with all possible issues. What we need right now is a feedback from daily usage.
Interested? Login to Graffiti Walls and enroll for beta program!
Vacation at home - Stuck on the City, Prague
Last 30 days was sort of a holiday for us. We went from Boston back to Czech Republic to see our families and friends, attend a few funky events and clear out our heads for another 2 months in CzechAccelerator which starts now in Cambridge Innovation Center.
One of very interesting events we attended was The International Exhibition of Street Art and Graffiti - Stuck on the City in Municipal Library of Prague, Czech Republic presented by Taktum and GHMP. Awesome and fairly large vernisage, tons of great artists (How & Nosm, Swoon, Honet, Delta, Horfe, Pasta Oner and MANY others) and the kind of art we love. Since words can’t describe what we have seen, check out spot on Graffiti Walls, we got plenty of flicks over there! (thanks yrka!)
Another part of this exhibition was painting of many new murals in Prague. Check out all of them on Graffiti Walls, leave comments and share!
Next article? iPhone app! Stay tuned.
Graffiti Walls Team
Os Gemeos Mural in Boston
So, some of you may already heard that famous Os Gemeos were painting a huge mural in center of Boston, where we actually live now. This event was scheduled right before the beginning of Os Gemeos exhibition which takes place in Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston from August 1 to November 25, so if you have any plans to visit the city, don’t miss it.
Nevertheless, we have been there on Dewey Sq., met a lot of nice people from the Boston art scene (shoutouts to Caleb Neelon and Pedro Alonzo of ICA) and took a couple of flicks and uploaded them to Graffiti Walls for all you to see. Check it out and leave comments.
Yo, european folks, fyi: Os Gemeos should be in Poland by this time, so check them out here!
Graffiti Walls Team
Director’s cut of the 6th annual Live Graffiti Show presented by Molotow & Graffiti Walls in Olomouc, Czech Republic. Contains 6m tall Graffiti Walls character performed by Ding. Thanks to all participants.
Also, check out the whole spot gallery from this jam!
Graffiti Walls on CzechAccelerator (Boston, New York)
As some of you may have already noticed, our core team’s current location is now at Cambridge Innovation Center, Boston, MA and to be honest - it’s exciting as hell.
Thanks to CzechAccelerator program we left Europe to push Graffiti Walls on the next level, to get some necessary resources and most importantly - bring you new features and polish the old ones, to make the service even more enjoyable then ever. iPhone app is still taking us some time, but stick with us, it’s something we want to make right from day 1.
It’s not just graffiti
When we created the first version of Graffiti Walls, it was all about legal walls, which was very specific. One of the reasons why we push the service forward is that we want to cover all types of urban art, including graffiti, street art and even galleries, once and for all. We’ll get to this topic later as it’s something very special for us.
The reason I write this is that we already roamed through Boston, took some pics and uploaded it to Graffiti Walls. Check out some Obey Giant’s and other flicks below! Boston is a beautiful city btw.
New York, here we come
In a month we’re heading to New York, the Mecca of graffiti (yeah, that infamous place where we shot pictures for the Graffiti Walls Teaser).
So, if you’re somewhere around here right now, or in NYC in September, let us know and we can hang out for a beer or coffee!
Graffiti Walls Team
Graffiti Walls has launched!
We are proud to announce that after almost 2 years we finally started our long-awaited project Graffiti Walls - so get an account, start exploring and upload your own flicks, we can’t wait to see them!
We officially started on May 1 2012, however you guys went totally crazy and our servers didn’t handle the overload. So as of today Graffiti Walls is running on Heroku and Amazon S3. Nerds already know what does it mean and for the rest: the service will be as fast as possible.
Also, we built a great new welcome page for newcomers with the best hand picked flicks. Best of all, you can now login with your Facebook account! And if your emails matches, it will automatically pair with your existing account.
We noticed that you guys sometimes upload not-so-legal places consisting of only one flick. To be honest, we expected it. We will deal with this later but right now every wall with one or no flick will be marked by grey flag. Just a detail, but a nice one.
We definitely don’t stop here, there is a lot of what we want to add, fine tune and enhance. Don’t forget we listen, so drop us a line with feedback, bug reports, feature suggestions or just to say ‘hi’!
Wondering how we came up with that lovely spraycan? Watch this short story about Graffiti Walls icon design!
Many people have been asking us about the progress of development on Graffiti Walls - a brand new network that we unveiled a month ago. If you haven’t noticed the buzz yet, watch the video above and don’t forget to subscribe.
So what’s this all about?
One year ago we started developing something that will help find nearest legal places for travelling writers. This small idea with simple approach became full-blown social project based on our personal needs and (of course) with world-changing attitude in mind.
We didn’t want to create only search engine based on Google Maps, we wanted to connect people to the places and writers between each other. To let them share a picture to a place where the piece was created, right after it was created. “Do you know what’s happening on the walls when you’re not there?” teaser video says. Now you know.
All social interactivity is covered by what we call “Neighborhood Watch”. Whenever you want to watch someone or particular place, there is always a “Watch” button available. And you don’t have to be a writer, of course. Graffiti-Walls.com is built for anyone with a passion for art.
Ok, so why does it take so long? When are you going to launch it?
Graffiti-Walls.com is mostly developed by our three-member team CODE01 in our spare time. Technically, current running version (which some of you lucky ones are testing) is written in PHP. By now it runs pretty well, however we are already working on Ruby on Rails version which will be much more solid in terms of performance and extensibility.
We hope we will launch Graffiti Walls this spring - the sooner the better.
I want to know more!
We know you do, that’s why we set up this blog! You can also subscribe on our teaser page, so we’ll notify you when the gates will open. And, of course, don’t forget to add Graffiti Walls on Facebook, Twitter and Google+!
We also would like to thank MOLOTOW for inspiring partnership and promotion of our service.