London graffiti route (or what Brad Pitt will never buy)
Experience, experience and experience. It is the obsession of every tourist office when looking for new products to offer travelers. The one in London has it easy, because just going out every morning is done. Here trends are born and die at lightning speed, and what literally was yesterday yesterday, in music, in food, in art or in fashion today is a black and white photo. The premises have a half-life of two years. They are crowned at the top of the podium of the modern thanks to the cool hunters and then, when they get bored and change their third (cause or effect?) they give way to the posh. And so I start over.
If this phenomenon happens in general throughout the city, in the east, the orbit velocity is even more dizzying. And this is, almost always, where that whiting that bites its tail originates and what begins in a marginal and almost clandestine way, can perfectly become the object of veneration. You just have to see how the stores and the public in the Spitlafields and Brick Lane markets have changed. Or how Banksy graffiti on the street have been protected with methacrylate panels (or look at Brad Pitt's house). Or, much simpler, what we have paid because they show us everything.
The route is a bit peculiar, with a somewhat peculiar content and with an equally peculiar guide. It focuses on this change and in urban art that colors three out of two facades of the East End, in particular.
Two passersby pass two ROA works © Corbis
Our cicerone wears visor, wide pants and a hoodie full of colored lamps, which gives us the first clue of what his hobbies are. For a couple of hours we followed him as visiting school children at the British Museum listening to the story of how this art slipped into the neighborhood in the 60s and how it has evolved so far.
Banksy, ROA, Shepherd Fairy, Jimmy C, Invader or Stik are some of the names that sound over and over again, perhaps unknown to the general public but authentic Van Gohgs, Caravaggios or Picassos for graffiti artists. Not only for his fame, but also for his differences in style. Some perform trapntojos naturalists or works of very rapid strokes and expressionist features, while the works of others have a naive or comic appearance. There are also those in which the true genius is the message and the game of the cat and the mouse with the employees of urban cleaning lodinense.
A woman observes a work in a London street © Corbis
There are no fences for the imagination: murals, ceramics, small tiles that create kites, rococo frames that do not frame anything or blue rounded plates that simply say "this plate was installed on such day". In every corner there is something to see, in each door a wink, and everyone has a story behind. To tell us all he is. Some are friends, others idols. Everyone has contributed to creating the landscape where he lives and where he works, making these pioneer routes in London.
The second part of the day invites action (how could it be otherwise) and the implementation of what was learned in the streets. It's time to soak up that experience that so obsesses the tourist offices. We get on an old, fully tuned bus, parked in a parking lot, and we take markers and scissors to create our own design. Right there, with a load of aerosols of all colors we give free rein to our imagination. A tree with nests of fluorine ducklings is my first opera. Mixed technique of stencil and raised hand on pallet board. It is more than likely that he never looks at Brad Pitt's house. But, time to time.
The routes and workshops take place every Sunday at 1pm. The approximate price of everything is £ 25 per person. More information on the Alternative London website.
A rooster of Roa © Corbis
A street work © Corbis