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Language of the Wall on ArtSlant Street

Here’s an excerpt from my latest article on ArtSlant Street (read the entire article there), along with a bunch more images courtesy of the Pera Museum.
Language of the Wall: Istanbul’s first exhibition on graffiti and street art
by Lori Zimmer

Graffiti and Street Art in a museum setting have a new audience, at the Pera Museum in the Beyoğlu district of Istanbul. Curated by the museum’s Roxane Ayral, “Language of the Wall” is the first exhibition of its kind in Turkey to bring graffiti indoors in an academic setting, taking over three floors of the private museum. For its introduction, Ayral has chosen an impressive roster of international artists as well as familiar locals to educate the Istanbul art connoisseur, including Futura, Carlos Mare, Cope2, Turbo, Wyne, JonOne, Tilt, Mist, Psyckoze, Craig Costello (aka KR), Herakut, Logan Hicks, C215, Suiko, Evol, Gaia, Tabone, Funk and No More Lies, plus photographs from the archives of Martha Cooper, Henry Chalfant and Hugh Holland. Along with the museum exhibition, Ayral has extended her street art lesson into the city proper, bringing murals by most of the artists to legal walls in neighborhoods scattered across Istanbul.

Being a relatively new movement in terms of art history and recognized by the art market in terms of monetary value only recently, street art has progressed in a sense; yet this attention and acceptance has come at the dismay of some graffiti purists, who find work done in the studio or on canvas to lack the authenticity or spirit that street pieces have. With this in mind, Ayral chose to set “Language of the Wall” apart from other museum shows. Instead of presenting each artist’s studio work, she has turned over the museum itself, having each artist create a site-specific work directly on the walls. The effect is less stoic than a traditional show of rows of canvases inside a white cube; it brings the viewer face to face with each artist, each mural dwarfing the visitor into an immersive experience with each piece. Being that Istanbul and the Pera Museum are late to the game, perhaps Ayral learned from the mistakes of exhibitions already past. But either way, her choice to use the pristine private museum walls itself as a giant canvas sets “Language of the Wall” apart from being “just another street art exhibition.”

TILT

TILT

Suiko

Suiko

MIST

MIST

Logan Hicks_Sol Kanat

Logan Hicks

Logan Hicks_Sağ Kanat

Logan Hicks

KR

KR

JonOne b

JonOne

Futura2

Futura

C215

C215

Comments
2 Responses to “Language of the Wall on ArtSlant Street”
  1. Martin Verne says:

    some pieces are nice.

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