The Free University was very proud to host graffiti art innovator and originator, Blek le Rat, on Sunday, March 20, 2011. I will post more photos and videos here as they come in. So stay tuned to this post…
What follows is my introduction:
Long before there was “street art” as we now know it, there was Blek le Rat. He was one of the first graffiti writers in Europe; one of the first people to use stencils to make public art on the street; one of the first—if not the first—to break away from the dominance of New York graffiti style; and one of the first to use icons instead of writing his name. He has been an inspiration to artists all over the world, from JayBadbc to Oseas Duarte to Shepard Fairey to Banksy—whose work is often an homage to le Rat’s iconography.
– Jon Reiss, director of the documentary, “Bomb It”
The problem with galleries is that… 99% of urban artists use urban art as a stepping stone into the galleries. It’s a fatal error because in galleries they’re seen by 40 people, in museums they’re seen by 10 people, but in the streets they’re seen by 100,000 people. And that’s the integrity of an artist’s work: to be seen. Not be sold or to be recognized in a museum—but to be seen by the world.
– Blek le Rat, Swindle Magaize