Under the name Elbow Toe, Brooklyn based artist Brian Adam Douglas has been pasting his distinctive woodcuts, stencil work, large-scale charcoal drawings and collages onto the walls of cities all around the world throughout the past decade. Douglas’ work has always drawn from myth, symbolism and poetry, something that has become particularly important in his most recent body of collage work. Just as he builds a finished image through the meticulous layering of tiny individual bits of coloured paper, so the meaning of the image is woven through layers of references to historically and culturally established narratives. This kind of intertextuality has become the foundation for the development of his distinctive style. The result is a sophisticated visual language where personal metaphors begin to communicate universal truths. Given these intricate and delicately arranged collages have a fluidity rarely seen in collage work, they may at first glance be mistaken for paintings.
This week's 'On the Streets' focuses on the subtle humour and finer elegance of street art. The pieces that caught our attention, located mostly in NYC and London, are all conceptually fresh, original and have something of a Duchampian aura.
Leading off is this brilliant Jilly Ballistic 'Exit' paste-up somewhere deep in the Brooklyn subway. Well-known for her intelligent, full of humour interventions, the artist continuously put thought-provoking anti-advertisements or into fine-looking collages, not being afraid to speak out; pasting stickers of gas-masked nurses and WWII soldiers. The result is more than satisfying. Image via the artist.
Other notable pieces come from Mobstr in London, Pose and Joei Urato in NYC, Cyrcle in London, Anthony Lister in Melbourne, Nunca in Paris and Borondo back in London.