I’m super myopic, and I only moved to Williamsburg a couple of months ago, so I might have just been missing this awesome Frank Ape by the artist Sines on Lorimer and Meserole Streets… until today.
I’m a fan, both of Brandon Sines and of what I take to be Frank’s life philosophy, so I was cheered to see it.
It also reminded me that I accompanied my Polaroid-snapping friend Crazy Nick to an art battle in Dumbo last year and we tried to get an article published about the experience. I don’t think anyone bit, so I’m happy to publish it here, six months after the fact, for whoever might still get a thrill:
Dumbo Arts Festival Art Battle Intense, Danceable
Funny that one of the stipulations of the Secret Walls art battle at Dynomighty Design last Saturday [September 27, 2014] was that the competing illustrators use only black ink on white canvasses, because the color in the room was off the chart. At least 50 many-splendored folks showed up to watch Abe Lincoln Jr. and Brandon Sines square off with markers and paint for 90 minutes.
As I wandered the gallery floor, the rainbow unfurled: a curly-haired baby with gold earrings bopped between big Keith Haring-esque paintings, strapped to a mom in a black sleeveless pantsuit with a red bra visible underneath. A tall black dude in a bright yellow “No Money, No Honey” t-shirt danced to the DJ’s Paula Abdul and Toto tracks. The emcee grew a waxed mustache, the ladies wore red lipstick, and the ratio of tie-dye shirts to spiderweb elbow tattoos throughout the crowd was probably one to one.
Meanwhile, Sanford King Sizes flew like inky stick insects and wet paintbrushes cried grayscale across the canvasses as the artists sweated ’til the timer dinged: the judging hour. A pale bald guy and a guy in hot pink glasses (both art world hot shots) were called upon to deliver their critiques and rulings, and the crowd listened before getting their own votes measured by a decibel meter. As is often the case, minds were split: the critics went for Abe Lincoln, and the people sided with Sines.
Sadly, there can be only one. But the guys took it like pros, and everyone still danced afterward, before tripping back out into the afternoon sun.