Sunday, January 01, 2006

Siloette



While being walked by my black labrador Lulu one day down a nearby by alleyway, out back of the local pawnshop, i came upon an unexpectedly beautiful image spray-painted on a wall. It was like stumbling through the jungle and finding Angkor Wat or finding Venus De Milo in a rubbish heap.
The signature said "Siloette"
Quite independently, a week later I bumped into my friend Bruce, who has a photographic, elephant-to the hundredth-squared memory for numbers, people, and all things metropolitan; he mentioned Siloette as a creative "spraypaint" artist, with a website, no less! (siloette.com - check it out!)

I would describe the main body of her work as Alphonse Mucha-meets-Anime-in a bed of contemporary graffiti - often depicting enigmatic, "sullen" (here i use the artist's words), sensuous young women with somewhat Puerto Rican features.
Found out that Siloette has been around the world from Japan to Paris spraypainting and illustrating on and in various media. Shucks, here was her work in my very own neighborhood alley!
Months later, on another dog-walk I chanced upon Siloette herself putting the finishing touches on a new painting. She was very affable and not at all the unapproachable artiste. Her partner "Mac" was also there (a great artist in his own right) - Siloette said the Renaissance primer-green skin tones she oft uses were inspired by him.
...and to think, the fate of this stuff is to be sprayed over, sometimes after a few months, to make room for something new. Part of the charm I suppose....

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Love Siloette...but does she BBQ?

Anonymous said...

too cool

Sharon said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sharon said...

The ephermeral nature of grafitti may be part of it's appeal, but hopefully her worked won't be covered. I wonder if I just arrived back from Philadelphia where, in 1984, the city reached out to grafitti artists and collaboratively began the Mural Arts Program (www.muralarts.org). There are more than 2000 murals around the city now, many in unexpected places. Turning a corner and discovering another mural was one of the great pleasures of living there. The program now employs 300 artists per year (one of them my friend Han). This is the mural I used to look at while waiting for the bus to the museum every day on the Avenue of the Arts: http://www.muralarts.org/gallery/theatre.php From the photo, it's very difficult to appreciate the sculptural elements that are a part of this. (I also have a fondness for grafitti because the ancient Maya dug it and did it everywhere.)

Sharon said...

Okay, so the comment deletion was due to my obsessive compulsive spelling disorder (I had to correct a word), and in the second post i wasn't 'wondering' if i just arrived back from Philly. I, in fact, know that I arrived back in town last night. I think.

Tom Clohessy said...

Sharon -
I appreciate the response. I'd never heard of such solid, continuous support of the graffiti and mural artists anywhere else as in Philly. When I lived in Santa Cruz Ca. in the 70's there seemed to a burgeoning mural scene sometimes characterized by surfer/psychedelic imagery that got submerged by "gentrification" and yuppie smoothover. I was particularly inspired by some of the muralists there who also did signwork and lettering - enough so that I embarked on a 14 year career as a "signpainter" (a much maligned trade as few know that were a great many creative people invoved in it in varying aspects and specialties).
The Mayan/graffiti connection makes sense when i look at some of the hispanic spraypaint designs which don't seem to consciously imitate Pre-Columbian art but still have that "tightly wound" intricate mayan hieroglyphic look.
hey, not to worry about changing the spelling. I'm a bit of a spelling and word freak, known to intercede and that most ridiculous moments when i notice someone misspelling something.
wit all my sinseer reguardz....

Sharon said...

Very cool time wasting fun from an RSS archaeology feed (http://del.icio.us/tag/archaeology) I subscribe to that lists (coincidentally) tags (http://del.icio.us/help/tags) on many subjects: http://www.otherthings.com/grafarc/