COME and check out the graffiti world of talented young artists at the Museum of Contemporary Art Shanghai.
The exhibition, titled “Post Contemporary Urban Graphics 7019,” features 92 works of street artists Shepard Fairey (Obey), Qiong Wan (JonOne), John Matos Crash, ZEVS, L’atlas, Alexandre Farto (Vhils), M. Chat and Tanc (Tancrede Perrot).
Coming of age during the 1970s and 80s, the eight artists have a shared background in popular culture, and each of them has an impressive background. Their works have been displayed at the New York City subway stations, during presidential campaigns and elections, and at the most striking positions on the streets of Paris.
A subculture that first thrived on the streets of New York, street art has become an important artistic expression of modern life. In most cases, it dealt with modern issues in colorful images and striking texts that caught the attention of passersby. It quickly became an important part of global popular culture, sweeping through cities around the world.
“For me, working in the public space is an opportunity to work directly with the city, a way of contributing to the wellbeing of its citizens while helping to embellish the environment they live in,” said Alexandre Farto, a Portuguese street artist who also goes by the name Vhils.
This is the first time that the works of street artists from across the world are being showcased at an art museum in China. Examining the contemporary zeitgeist from a new perspective, the works on display address issues of urban humanism and street culture.
“An exhibition like this one helps clarify this issue to the public, to help them understand the vitality and diversity of the movement. What it also shows is that art is art, regardless of the context in which it’s being created or presented,” said Farto.