Start Your Morning With This "Big Bang"
If, like me, you're in desperate need of some procrastination fodder at work this week, and you'd like something a little more stimulating than another cute-puppy-falling-asleep video, take ten minutes to check out the following mind-boggling, stop-motion video from Italian street artist blu.
The erudite author of blu’s Wikipedia page says, “his graphic mania is directly proportional to the epic scale of his murals.” Fellow Pluck-o-phile Nico described blu's work as combining "Rube Goldberg Devices with The Life Aquatic, or something." While your caffeine sets in, take a look and judge for yourself.
While it may not boost my productivity on these expense reports, watching this video gets my neurons firing and inspires a passion to create. I’m thrilled to join blu on his mad-cap dash through evolution. I’m envious of his “day job” -- hopping from building to building, medium to medium, working for countless hours to spawn inventive, accessible art. I love the way the forms keep (pun intended) evolving - every time a trash bag or twisted pipe is brought into focus, the universe shifts, and the wall becomes the ceiling as the perspective changes.
I also love thinking about the mark he left on the streets of Argentina, Uruguay and Italy where the video was filmed. I imagine a 9 year old on his way to school, looking up and seeing a giant smudge of gray, unable to tell its origin, unable to find meaning in the vague blur. What is that?
After an initial foray into traditional spray-paint graffiti, blu created his signature style in the early aughts by using house paint and rollers to create larger-than-life murals throughout his hometown of Bologna, Italy.
Much like Banksy (of Exit Through the Gift Shop fame) blu remains an anonymous street artist, letting his prolific works speak for him. If his themes - the temporal nature of our environment, sharp criticism of the commodification of art, and a profound sense of wanderlust - don't positively scream "Pluck!" then I don't know what does!
I discovered and started writing about this video prior to the events which have been unfolding in Japan. Considering the recent news of overheated reactor cores and cross-Pacific radiation plumes, the last few minutes of this video are all the more relevant and haunting.
For more info on blu, including more great stop-animation and time lapse videos, check out his website at www.blublu.org. Particularly worthy of your attention is his blog which gives a glimpse into the preparation and execution of some of his massive pieces.