Discovery – Or Why I Love Street Art
Hopefully you’ve been following Banksy’s month long residency and outdoor exhibit in New York City this month. Without even touching the somewhat provocative messages of this pieces, there is something really fun about this style of guerrilla street art. I wish I could be hunting his new pieces each morning! I love the thrill of discovery and that moment of personal appreciation and enjoyment in front of clandestine art. There is no gallery, no reviews of the show and no artist to hear your praise (or criticism). Street artists create art out of their own creative need and to hopefully make us think as we pass their work. I certainly appreciate street art and think it improves our urban areas.
I’ve written a few times about street art. I still love finding Stikmen! Whenever I find one, there is a sense that I’ve uncovered some little treasure hidden away that no one else even noticed. It always makes me smile to see a worn out, half-Stickman or a new one pop up somewhere.
My favorite street art piece is in Cambridge, MA. Someone had pasted a series of elaborate paper people around town. I use to walk by one particular image of an old man whose lower half was a swirl of instruments and young people working. With a thick beard and even thicker glasses, he gazed contemplatively upward. Fittingly, I nicknamed him “The Professor”. (He’s also close to the MIT campus so maybe it was the power of suggestion.)
I would see the Professor almost every day. Other people passed him without seeming to notice this life-sized figure glued to an old brick building. I enjoyed watching his deterioration as storms pulled piece after piece of paper from the wall. His thoughtful gaze skyward made me pause and enjoy this fantastic image. Our streets should be filled with art and I’m happy that there are people making these lovely works.