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Hundreds of Philadelphians Build New Monument to America’s Failing For-profit Healthcare System at Broad and Vine

July 26, 2019

Welcome to America’s newest monument, a massive mixed media installation at the soon-to-be former Hahnemann University Hospital located at Broad and Vine streets in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

A monument dedicated to America’s failing for-profit healthcare system, the piece was created by hundreds of angry Philadelphians and includes heartbreaking farewell messages from the staff of the hospital’s various departments as well as a number of more pointed messages like, “Medicine Was Here!” and “#Greed.”

The installation is on view until the United States joins most of our allies and much of the rest of the world in deciding that healthcare is a human right. Because frankly, a system of healthcare that’s main motivator is profit should fail. And it is here in the U.S. It’s collapsing under its own greed.

Fittingly, I suppose, this new monument sits in the largest population center of arguably the most crucial swing state for the next Presidential Election in 2020. An election, it deserves underscoring, which currently has two of the leading Democratic presidential candidates running on a platform of Medicare for All. Those candidates of course being Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.

Honestly, it’s hard to imagine that this new monument and what it symbolizes won’t have a truly profound effect on the next election. And if it does, it could be remembered as one of the most important works of public art of our century.

Absolutely incredible work all around! Bravo to the folks at Hahnemann who organized this.

Adam Crawford Paints His 2nd Bike Rack Mural on South Street

July 25, 2019

Last March we blogged about the then new bike rack mural by Philly-based artist Adam Crawford outside Tattooed Mom on South Street between 5th and 6th streets, and this week Adam finished his second such mural a few blocks away on South Street between 9th and 10th streets outside Whole Foods Market.

Absolutely love this type of abstract mural on the street! Off the wall murals like these seem to really embody the creative and playful spirit of South Street.

Maybe some of the businesses along South Street could pitch in to fund a series of street murals at few of their busier intersections as well? Hire different Philly artists to paint each intersection, or key intersections, all the way up the street! Then hire new artists to paint them fresh every spring, since street murals require more upkeep. Please, someone on South Street, run with that idea!

See more murals from Adam Crawford around Philly here.

Kid Hazo Installs “Jawnny Ratchets” on South Street

July 20, 2019

(Photos by Streets Dept Contributor Eric Dale)

New installation this weekend from Philly’s own Kid Hazo replacing the old Johnny Rockets signage (that was in business at 5th and South streets for 20 years, closed Jan 2018) with the new appropriately Philly themed “Jawnny Ratchets – The Original Hamberder”! Instead of Chili and Malts we got “No Chill” and serving “Malt Liquors”… Opening this Summer 2019.

Alas, almost as quickly as this installation went up on Friday, the building’s owner took it down. But that’s the nature of street art. So while you can’t see this piece now for yourself in person, you can see the rest of Kid Hazo’s jawn themed restaurant spoofs at his new Signs art exhibition at Paradigm Gallery + Studio that’s opening Friday, July 26th!

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Sean 9 Lugo Honors Nine New Philly-Bred Creatives with Wheatpaste Series

July 16, 2019

Philly-area street artist Sean 9 Lugo is back at it again installing near life-sized wheatpaste tributes to Philly-bred creatives all around town!

Titled Clones of Illadelph, Sean’s series pays homage to various individuals with Philly roots who he says have motivated, inspired, and/or shown him love in his life and career. Sean started this series in April of 2018 with his first nine installations (and you can see those here,) including a wheatpaste to yours truly that I was beyond honored to learn about. This time around Sean’s got nine new Philly folks to celebrate installed at eight new locations!

Below I’ve listed the Philly creatives that Sean has wheatpasted in the order that the photos appear in this post, along with their locations and the blurb Sean included in his Instagram posts about each installation:

1) DJ Jazzy Jeff and Will Smith at 52nd Street and Baltimore Avenue
“‘Summer Time’ In 1991, DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince dropped the album ‘HomeBase.’ I was 9 years old at the time when I heard ‘Summer Time.’ That jawn changed my life and gave me an even bigger love for Hip Hop and by the way those jackets are fuego. Thank you DJ Jazzy Jeff and Will Smith for such a classic album and inspiring me as a youngster.” [Source]

2) Marisa Velázquez-Rivas at 2nd and Laurel Streets
“My hermana is a force to be reckoned with. This young Jedi is so real and is killing it with her messages. Thanks for collaborating, Marisa!” [Source]

3) Ginger Rudolph at 5th and South Streets
“There are few people in this world that you run into who automatically put a smile on your face, Ginger Rudolph is one of them. Her support for artists and projects with HAHA x Paradigm are so amazing.” [Source]

4) Mollywoppers NYB at Front and Reed Streets
“This past New Year I was invited by my brother Mike Supermodel (owner of Jinxed Philadelphia) to be a part of the craziest celebration in Philadelphia. Can’t wait for next year, only 173 days left before I get to have a fucking blast with the Mollywoppers NYB in 2020.” [Source]

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Street Artist Marisa Velázquez-Rivas Wheatpastes New “Smash the Fash” Series Around Center City

July 16, 2019

A new wheatpaste series this week by Philly-based street artist Marisa Velázquez-Rivas titled Smash the Fash depicts Nazi and white supremacist symbols being crushed by a hand with incredible nails!

In a public Facebook post about her new series, Marisa wrote: “Respeta existencia o espera resistencia. Filadelfia es antifascista.” Which, if Facebook translate is correct, reads in English: “Respect existence or expect resistance. Philadelphia is antifascist.” (Feel free to correct me and Facebook translate in the comments, if that’s not accurate.)

The paste photographed above depicts a sweaty member of a white supremacist hate group running from a brilliantly manicured hand, and it’s located on Walnut street off 11th street in the Gayborhood. The paste photographed below depicts a swastika crumbling under the pressure of that same manicured hand, and it’s located on Chestnut street off 19th street in Rittenhouse Square. A third wheatpaste apart of the series that depicted a MAGA (Make America Great Again) hat wearing individual meeting the same fate with the hand has already been destroyed, but you can check it out here.

Absolutely LOVE these, Marisa… Hope to see more around town soon!

Read our 2018 Streets Dept Oral History Project interview with Marisa Velázquez-Rivas now here; and see other works from the artist around Philly here!

Philly Street Art Interviews: Keeping It 365 with Symone Salib

July 11, 2019

(Photos by Conrad Benner and Streets Dept Contributor Eric Dale)

Welcome to Season 2 of Streets Dept’s newest series of street artist interviews, created in partnership with Philadelphia’s own unofficial official street art museum, Tattooed Mom. Each month, Streets Dept Contributor Eric Dale will sit down with one local street artist to ask them about their work. Together, we’ll learn more about the incredible artists getting up around Philly.

In the past several months, Symone Salib’s nascent art career has really begun to take off. That can partly be attributed to her recent push into street art. Her wheatpasted portraits and quotes have proved quite popular, leading to collaborations with other artists and many messages of support from followers. We sat down recently to talk about her beginnings—both in fine art and in street art.

Streets Dept’s Eric Dale: Hey Symone, thanks for coming by to chat!
Symone Salib: Heck yeah, thanks for having me!

SD: For starters, I want to congratulate you on a somewhat… meteoric rise? It seems like it’s been pretty great for you!
SS: Yeah, it’s, like, really wild. To make stuff, and have enough people resonate with it, especially that are in your city, that you call your home—but then also from people that don’t live in the city… to have it be shared with people [outside Philly who] also connect with it and message me… I’m like oh my gosh! It’s, like, really wild.

SD: So for folks who are unfamiliar with you, let’s review the past couple months… You were in a gallery show with Malachi Lily at The Art Dept Collective in April, you were a part of Tattooed Mom’s 22nd birthday show in May, and your work is on display at Photo Pop Philly at The Bourse this summer! That seems like… a lot?
SS: Yeah, definitely. Especially with juggling other parts of my life, and my jobs, it is definitely a lot. But at the same time I feel like this is where I feel the most fulfillment. So I’m happy to do it when I’m super tired at the same time. Like, this is what I want, right?

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Two New Wheatpastes by Amberella

July 8, 2019

Two new wheatpastes by Philly/LA-based artist Amberella last week!

The first (photographed above) is located on Market street between 9th and 10th streets and reads, “Who Lead The World: Girls!” The second (photographed below) is located at 20th and Kater streets reads, “Be Gentle And Kind to Yourself.”

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