Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Fikelephi SuperMarket

Painting the Old Fikelephi SuperMarket next door to the Old Butchery has been a great experience. The building is situated right next to a taxi stop so there is a mix of people walking past and enquiring. This building has also been great to paint because it was always regarded as the graffiti wall in the hood, so seeing this “renovation/continuation” was a good point of departure in responding to questions.  I decided to have the first example of real letter-style graffiti on this building. I remember the issue of a “reversal of roles” in the workshop, where I received feedback that it would be best not to change our stance in enlightening Phakamisa about real graffiti art in the way we approach our style.

This has meant leaving a few details to the creativity of the viewer when painting the semi-wildstyle Dlala Indima piece that hugs the corner of the building. It was really comforting to see that most people have taken an eye to letter-forms and “simplifying” graffiti would have been a) a bit patronizing for the eager groups of youth who love to decipher different possible meanings and shapes and b) a bit boring aesthetically. It was also a good challenge seeing how best to balance the two approaches, as I later painted a very legible san-serif version behind the building that I will complete by adding a character and simple background effects. 

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