There are all these women in Melbourne’s streets doing amazing paste-ups. I’m only commenting on their gender because for years males have dominated Melbourne’s street art scene. What few women street artists there were in Melbourne were often notable not for their art but for being female. Now there are so many note worthy women doing street art in Melbourne and their talent is obvious to anyone, although their sex might not so obvious. (I had no idea that Kaffine was a woman – not that it is an issue anyway – I was wondering why broos, goat headed people, a common RuneQuest monster were appearing on the streets of Melbourne albeit with a stag’s skull head – even more frightening). Most of these women concentrate on paste-ups (wheat pasting).
Baby Guerilla – has been pasting up her drawings of women, men and birds floating for years. How she gets her paste-up up so high must be how she has got her name, climbing like a baby gorilla. (See Invurt’s interview with Baby Guerilla.)
Klara – I thought Klara was a one-image artist just doing faces until I saw her self-referential paste-up at Dean Sunshine’s warehouse.
Urban Cake Lady – the woman stripped tights, the red cloak and the animal familiars are the legend of the Urban Cake Lady.
Urban Cake Lady
Suki – clearly inspired by Miso, Melbourne’s first woman of paste, not that that’s a bad thing, although people, including myself, have misattributed Suki’s work to Miso. (Miso hasn’t been doing any paste-ups on the streets for over a year now.) Suki’s women are beautiful water bearers with long hair. (See Invurt’s interview with Suki.)
Bubbles Unknown – text based and hand written pages with small illustrations.
“I & The Others” – also inspired by Miso, “I & The Others” produce some fine paper cutting.
“I & The Others”
Kaff-eine – paste-ups figures of children and a stag skull headed figure, along with working in aerosol paint, marker pen, up-cycling and other street art activities.
Precious Little – first came to notice for her poetry on laneway walls printed with an old fashion Dymo label maker but has since moved into using aerosol paint. (For more on Kaff-eine and Precious Little see my blog post about their exhibition, Urban Scrawl, at the City Library earlier this year.)
From Jenny Holtzer to Miso and Swoon and this current generation of paste-up artists: why are paste-ups attractive to female street artists?
18 Comments | tags: Baby Guerila, Be Free, Kaff-eine, Klara, Melbourne, Miso, paste-ups, Suki, Urban Cake Lady | posted in Street Art
Graffiti creeps up along the Upfield line bicycle path and in recent years there several quality pieces north of Moreland station. Paste-ups have now reached the shoe factory on my block with a well-placed piece by Shark, who appears to be specializing in images of birds.
Shark, flying ducks, Coburg
As if there weren’t enough fly-posters for bands and concerts all over Melbourne there has been a big increase in paste-ups in the last year. Paste-ups maybe popular with street artists but are not highly regarded by the general public, unlike the public reception to the stencil art scene. This is because there often there isn’t much to this poster bombing. An unoriginal black and white photograph is enlarged on a photocopier and pasted on the wall doesn’t impress the general public even if it is really big. Part of the problem is often the only consideration for paste-up placement is access and visibility. The content of many of these paste-ups is just bland selection of sampled photographs images. Many people want the instant fame of street art; years ago Happy commented with his “Instant Fame” series of paste-ups.
Happy, "Get Instant Fame"
Quality paste-ups are cut around the outline of the image, or include, even more paper cutting, like those of Miso and Swoon. Paste-up specialists like Phoenix mounts his paste-ups on cut MDF panels that have been designed withstand the weather.
Baby Guerilla, floating nude women
Many artists and illustrators are using paste-ups to show their work on the street; I keep seeing Baby Guerilla’s floating nude women along on the streets. The Melbourne paste-up artists that I most admire are Phoenix, Urban Cake Lady and Happy. (There are others who I have not been able to identify.) I admire their work because they are produce interesting content; the message and content of the paste-up is more important than the wheat paste technique. Phoenix is interested in the politics and meaning of signs. Urban Cake Lady mysterious red draped woman with stripped stockings along with wild animals. And Happy had a cynical take on both street art and advertising.
Urban Cake Lady
unknown artist, clothes line
Who is your favorite wheat-pasting street artist?
6 Comments | tags: Coburg, fly posters, Happy, Melbourne, Miso, paste-ups, Phoenix, Swoon, Urban Cake Lady, wheat pasting | posted in Street Art