One of the most eagerly anticipated street art events of the year. NuArt has been transforming the Norwegian town of Stavanger into a street art haven each year since 2001. More than that, it’s been steadily re-imagining the concept of the street art festival. Indeed, what is the relationship between art and the urban space.
The 2019 event featured some of the world’s best known icons of the street art scene. Legendary photography Martha Cooper was part of the NuArt Plus programme whilst iconic graffiti crew 1UP were front and centre in the artists line up. They joined a host of other NuArt alumni in creating an exciting new body of work in the city.
Berlin’s 1UP crew are one of Europe’s best known graffiti crews. Staying true to their roots they have consistently pushed the boundaries of their art finding ever more exciting territory to move into.
A key part of the NuArt family from the beginning, he has been a producer, co-curator and artist at a number of festivals over the years. Dotmasters is known for his stencil work which he places subtly around the streets. He painted recently at the NuArt Aberdeen festival and also in St. Leonards where he painted a giant house facade.
A pioneer of the modern subvertising movement. Dr. D has become known for his street installations which make use of street furniture familiar to all of us. You need to look closely at his work such is the familiarity of his creations. His messages once seen speak loudly.
London’s Edwin is an enigma on the streets of the capital. Remembering the scrawled messages of 70’s London as captured in Roger Perry’s book ‘writing on the wall‘, he uses his work to mock and challenge the capitals rich and powerful. For his work in Stavanger he chose to use his forum to draw attention to the impact of climate change in the city.
Hyuro’s work addresses prevaling social and political issues. They tell a story about challenges of our time. Her piece at the Aberdeen Festival in 2018 explored the relationship between Scotland and England by showing two boys stuck in the same shirt squabbling.
Planting pansies at the site of homophobic abuse. Paul Harfleet finds the nearest source of soil to where the incident took place and plants an unmarked pansy. For the Stavanger festival he painted the pansies. It’s a simple act but it’s one that shows solidarity with those affected by homophobia.
Jad El Khoury
The winner of the Venice ‘Arte Laguna Prize for Urban and Land Art 2019‘ and the first recipient of the NuArt residency award. El Khoury is a Lebanese artist whose work deals with the legacy of conflict and political tension in his country. It’s a legacy of conflict can be felt long after its conclusion. How people and the place deals with that is key in the work that he creates.
His work in Stavanger is a homage to his ‘Burj el Hawa (Tower of the Wind’) in Lebanon which enchanted the judges in Venice. There he turned an entire abandoned building into a subtle choreographed urban object, installing 400 material banners. Fluttering in the wind of the former window panes they transform the space and the perception of the building.
Julio Anaya Cabanding
Known for his urban masterpieces. Spanish artist Cabanding paints works from the old masters in out of the way and obscure places in the city. Actively searching for these abandoned spaces his work frees these old masters from the ‘sacred’ space of the gallery. In doing so he completely changes their relationship with the environment. You can see his work from the 2019 Aberdeen festival here.
A Spanish visual artist, Oliveras work is based around research and ideas derived from his understanding of public space. He looks for interactions and conversations which happen within towns and communities. His piece in Stavanger is called ‘Beholders’ and references the ongoing debate in Norway about migrants and refugees.
He explains the piece as follows on his instagram: “On one side there is the passive position of the observer, on the other side there is the position of the artist. Both act as beholders of the critical situation. With sunken ships being paraded at Biennials as art, this is a direct shot at both the art establishment and the media coverage of these tragic events.”
Portugal’s Viegas has roots entrenched in the 90’s graffiti scene. Now living in the Netherlands he has evolved his style to a kind of 3D surrealism. Heavily influenced by his background in graffiti he has changed his relationship with his art approaching his walls with a new perspective. We last saw his work at Upfest in 2018 and you can see that here.
Using existing billboards and advertising infrastructure he removes old adverts and reassembles them to create new and often humorous works. His interventions look directly to their immediate environment for both inspiration and commentary.
The 2019 NuArt festival took place in Stavanger, Norway between 5-8 September 2019. All photographs have kindly been provided by NuAr via photographers Brian Tallman and Runa Anderson. Context for each artist has also been taken from the NuArt instagram account.