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Painting for Palestine: Durban


5th-11th March 2012

Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) is an annual international series of events (including rallies, lectures, cultural performances, film screenings and multimedia displays) held in cities and campuses across the globe. IAW seeks to raise awareness about Israel’s apartheid policies towards the Palestinians and to mobilize support for the growing Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

During IAW 2012, artists and activists around the world are staging events in protest of this continued crime against humanity, as well as raising awareness and consciousness about the oppression of the Palestinian people.

This is a focussed movement of peaceful protest action, directed not at Israelis, but specifically at the racist apartheid government of Israel.

In conjunction with IAW, Gangs of Graffiti called on similarly-minded street artists and graffiti writers to promote the Palestinian cause and raise awareness around the fight for human rights that ensues daily within Israel and the Occupied Territories, by creating work with FREE PALESTINE as the theme. 

Here’s what is happening on the Durban side…


Painting a Future

The project has begun…

Inspired by Durban’s legal aerosol squad PAINT THE FUTURE (PTF) is open to any and all 031 ‘aerosolistas.’ PAINTING A FUTURE is a Gangs of Graffiti and Step Up Gallery initiative with simple enough objectives: painting big beautiful walls for schools and shelters and other places of refuge, using our art to recognize the role these institutions play in our society and promoting their work by rewarding them with this unique type of recognition. We’re promoting a professional approach to producing murals and productions from participating artists, to develop our art as a professional pursuit, a career choice as well as a passion.

Wanna paint?

Step 1 – secure a wall: approach a school or a shelter in your area, or that you know of, which would appreciate some stylish paint work and get them to agree

Step 2 – produce a proper plan, including a sketch and some specs of the wall (get a few before shots, measure the space out, play with some ideas in your blackbook)

Step 3 – hit us up at Gangs of Graffiti with the plan and the details of the space and we will hook you up with some paint

Step 4 – rock it!

Step 5 – Send us photos of the finished work and we will blog it and publicize it, far and wide…

Paint the Future Party: Alliance Franscaise

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Success!  R1500 through the door equals approximately 30 cans of premium paint, plus onetwo outside donations and the generous sponsorship of 100 CANS from Durbans premier underground art store STEP UP GALLERY (Sandy Centre, Pinetown), all together creating a thick rack of color to be lovingly and finely processed and produced upon our awaiting cityscape!

With performances by SPITMUNKY and JET WENTWORTH, customization from FINK and CADE, shirt stencilling from PTF Crew, and a host of heads nodding and chilling and celebrating the postponement of the trial of the 031 Aerosol 7, this evening was a fresh approach to catalization through cans and capitilization on cannisters…much respect to all involved in pulling this off…Durban stays fresh once again!

Follow Your Art Opening – Ewok

“I thought I knew exactly what I was gonna say and how I was gonna say it this evening, until I popped into the gallery early for a sneak preview.  I totally became a kid again.  I was so excited that I started vocalizing every time I saw a new piece.  One of the curators commented that she hoped everyone would be as excited as I was.  I said I didn’t think that they would be as vocal, but I was sure they would be equally as stoked.
I was completely overwhelmed by the sheer skill in all of the technique on display, the absolute quality of craftsmanship, from the Free Beer to the ChangeRoom recycled cassette belt buckles.

I was totally stoked on the energy inherent in all of the work, on the walls and the canvasses and the found objects, it just seemed to be screaming at me in some kind of insane visual hysterical laughter and I couldn’t help but screech back.  The mixing of mediums, the fresh styles and the complete and utter embrace of grungy now pop clashing culture, carried off in fine Durban laid back it-is-what-it-is style had me totally buzzing.

Then it was the full-on life affirming society stripping messages in all of the work, provocative, catchy, funny, relevant and conscious and correct, everything mainstream advertising trains to attain, all contained in this one mind-blasting space of cool kid culture.  Cool in the way it is rad to be able to hookup the lightie at the robots with a couple crown on your way home walking past all those dirty walls.  Cool like it is when you kick the breeze over a brew with a bru while the band settles into the next set and you both think their sound is okay, saluting them with a cold quart.  Cool like cool should be, like whatever is clever, like sweet is subject to taste so your sweet might not be mine but that’s fine.  Cool like the Durban collective.
So, some words about the FOLLOW YOUR ART exhibition.

This is an exhibition of art that exists outside of any exhibition space.  Without the galleries or the exhibitions, this art will still find its way to you.  This art actively seeks you out, in its fashion and its design and its music and the way it constantly occupies physical public spaces, this is a culture of art comin’ at you.

It brings itself to you, and it will find you, and because it is so able to do this, it becomes fully aware of the responsibility that is intrinsic in this brazen act of attitude and self confidence.  The responsibility, when claiming public spaces, to benefit the viewer in some way, to enhance the experience of that space, and need it be said, to contribute to its community.  This is not selfish art, or subliminal art that asks so much of the viewer and yet seems so unwilling to translate or be translated.  This art wants to communicate clearly with you, and it understands the necessity for this type of communication in bringing people together, in supporting other sub-cultures within its own, in inspiring further developments through the free sharing of its craft.
This is our art, as a community of creatives, musicians designers writers authors poets performers activists and accompanying heads, this is our art.  This art is a gift, as in free and I hope you like it, as in I want you to have this, a gift as in out of respect for you and in celebration of you.

 This art is a gift, from a generation of artists who want to play their part for us all, who want to communicate for us all, who actively seek to define clearly the many messages of our collective culture, who are not satisfied only in the journey from studio to gallery space to collectors wall, but are focussed on playing a real part in influencing and supporting and promoting every aspect of our day to day missions.

In this way, we are the art, and they are the artists, and in typical wonderful flip the script mash-up anything goes style, the opposite also applies. This exhibition pays tribute to our collective fashions, our collective music, our collective and diverse ideologies and all of the in-between idiosyncrasies that allow us all to keep the fire burning, to keep our cool, and to keep conscious.”

(Images courteSy of the COLLECTIVE)

S.A.P.S Walls #2 and #3

Surface Attack Production Squad walls in Durban…

First S.A.P.S Wall: Corner Cafe

Putting the ART into HEART… Surface Attack Production Squad gets busy on a SUNDAY IN DURBAN… painting a LEGAL WALL.

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(Images by Tyran Roy)

Follow your Art – Street Art Culture Exhibition

Follow your Art: contemporary/street culture is a first of its kind exhibition of art and design at the COLLECTIVE.

It celebrates the production and cultural influence of youth cultures. Skateboarding, graffiti, comics and design have not only affected fashion, music, literature, and film, they have influenced a generation of young artists who identify with the lifestyle and counter-culture stance of these creative art forms born from the street. In addition to including works in all mediums by more than 50 artists, Follow your Art includes music, album covers, skateboards and “zines” that reveal the spirit and vitality of street culture and its ever expanding influence on the youth of tomorrow.

The unifying traits of these artists, whose styles still lie outside the world of conventional gallery art, include an interest in pop culture iconography and a nonsensical do-it-yourself attitude. Follow your art traces the early influences on this new generation of Artists, Filmmakers, Illustrators, Graffiti writers, Cartoonists and Designers, and explores the broader cultural trends that make their work what it is today.

Follow your art aims to offer each artist an outlet to express their personal perspectives to enable them to engage in an intercultural dialogue and expose themselves to other sub cultural diversities within our city and beyond. We hope this exhibition will be the first of many, where we can view the best and most inspirational local and international artists. Most of all lets have some fun whilst expressing who we are through our respected art forms!
Opening night: Live music by Danti Daxi, The Otherwise and Asleep in Transit, launch of “Free Beer 6”, and possible live art performances.

There will also be a cash bar, and coffee available.

Be sure to submit artworks for our Follow Your Art exhibition before the 5th September. The closing date for submissions is 30 August 2011. Download the entry form here

The Collective/ Warren Raysdorf

Graffiti Artists Walled In: Mail and Guardian

There is a beautiful slideshow piece up on The Mail and Guardian.

(Windermere Road, Durban. Art and image by Stop.)

Art is Not a Crime! (I Stand Behind the Aerosol 7) – Jet Wentworth

 Jet speaks… download and say your piece.

“Stand for something or fall for everything.” 



So Much More Than Graffiti – Mr Paynter

A quick note to the Great City of Durban, (A City I love. Enough to wear her name under my skin.)

The joke of an arrest which spawned this very site has the police (and our local government I’m sure) patting each-other on the back and grinning ear to ear for their catching of these “hardened gangsters”.

Meanwhile, I for one have been overwhelmingly warmed by the intelligence of our city’s people in reply to this media-propaganda and their seeing right through the very thin woolen veil the authorities have tried to pull over their eyes.

Whilst I know the guys involved, my letter is not to say up graffiti, up art, up free thought or even  up basic creativity because these thoughts and feelings have been covered extensively, I will say however that the uneasy feeling stirring in a lot of people around this situation is indicative of a rising attitude of disenchantment and dissatisfaction. This is our city and the last time I checked, this is a democracy, and with the media hype surrounding this fiasco is handing us a rather large chance to be heard, on the proverbial golden platter. Read the rest of this entry

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