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Art in the Streets Hardcover – Apr 12 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Skira Rizzoli (April 12 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847836177
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847836178
  • Product Dimensions: 23.7 x 3.1 x 29 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,453,628 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


“The first large-scale American museum exhibition, curated by MoCA director Deitch, to survey the colorful history of graffiti and street art movement internationally.” ~Publishers Weekly

Art in the Streets… traces the birth and dissemination of styles through ‘writers’ and street artists around the world… Highlighting the connection between graffiti and street art and other vibrant subcultures, such as those developed around Hip Hop in the Bronx and skateboarding in Southern California, Art in the Streets explores parallel movements in dance and music.” ~Slamxhype

About the Author

Jeffrey Deitch is director of MoCA, Los Angeles.

Roger Gastman is a curator, writer and graffiti artist.

Aaron Rose is a curator and film director, most known for his work Beautiful Losers.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa8641858) out of 5 stars 8 reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa877766c) out of 5 stars Very good exhibition catalogue May 18 2011
By S. Koterbay - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
There should be every reason to be almost distrustful of an exhibition catalogue of street art/graffiti that transposes it into a museum setting. However, this book does an excellent job of ensuring that the reader is looking outside the walls of the institution, being both a history and a means of generating a deep level of appreciation for a set of art forms (not just graffiti but tattoos, auto decoration, and an almost bewildering range of other mediums) in a serious way that doesn't always treat itself too reverently. Only wish some of the photographs were better, and better chosen, but the documentation for this art is, of course, always problematic. Highly recommended.
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xb442e234) out of 5 stars (Mostly Some) Art in the Streets (of the USA) Sept. 9 2011
By Daniel Lobo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Art in the Streets, the Jeffrey Deitch curated show, has been quite an unavoidable and influential topic in street art circles this year, in particular for those of us related to the USA where it was fairly pervasive. The catalogue offers what seems to be a good overview of the show, but it also shines in its flaws.

While it may seem from a distance that the book offers a general or dedicated overview of street cultures, what it does explicitly is take the rise of graffiti cultures in New York, highlights them with a few touches of history here and there, and argues rapidly for its unequivocal influence with a few international examples, and a revolving narrative about its legacy and expansion in the States.

This US centrism would not be a problem, and could be quite a legitimate area to focus given the background and knowledge of the curating team. There is obviously plenty to share and claim from the US influence and experience as a way of opening debates of public art, sanctioned and informal cultures, etc. But it lingers to easily on a disregard of history, on a "me first" attitude commonly seen in other areas, that pushes precedents to a footnote, if not ignored altogether, and glorifies own events above all else. In fact, it ignores rather willingly the processes of cultural colonization of which it is part.

But probably the biggest flaw of the volume and project lies in not what it is but in what it chooses to leave out, and its lack of open processes, which is a common problem in endeavors that pretend to be comprehensive. Here the biggest omission is not only an attempt to explore the mechanisms of public dispute, of political engagement and disengagement, that art in the streets represents, but the glaring omission of those polemics where the show is a central acting character, and where it could offer a polemic insight.

There are a few notable stories in this regard, but obviously the one around the work of Blu, which is prominently displayed in a 4 page spread, including a double page bleeding shot of the work that the Museum Director and main organizer of the exhibit Jeffrey Deitch had himself ordered buffed. Publishing requirements aside, it is quite a glaring omission. And it is also quite telling of the curatorial mechanism and ranges of polemics that the topic generates. Likewise, probably the local impact, and discourses from authorities, mainstream media, and other conservative organizations around the claimed negative impact that a show glorifying vandalism has on communities may also deserve a note elsewhere. For instance, the polemic arising from from the trite MacDonal's Essay, which supposedly triggered the cancellation of the same show in Brooklyn is worth noting. But of course, here we are already looking at processes spurned by the exhibition, which an old fashion catalogue has no interest and capacity to include.

The catalogue, despite the regular suspects and that self-centered vision of the culture it aims to represent has some redeeming qualities. It is questionable whether this celebration of Street Art will help promote the culture instead of stereotyping it more, and facilitate its continued passive absorption in some sectors. But by the same token of US centrism that permeates most of the volume, some of the most interesting interviews and sections precisely dig in that area, despite that it is a fairly well documented aspect elsewhere.

Of all the essays, the closing one by Diedrich Diederichsen "Street Art as a Threshold Phenomenon" while not free of some general defects of the overall project is the only one that explores a more complex overview of the mechanisms that shape the culture that the volume is trying to apprehend.

Other than that the volume offers a perfunctory chronology that starts in 1941 with Kilroy was here, and dwells in plenty of US milestones peppered with growing international notes as the timeline progresses as if that were to prove the direct influence of US street culture in the world, passing over glaring simplifications about the colonization exercised by the USA, physically and culturally through the years that would explain more accurately certain aspects of that influence.

Unfortunately the book might serve ultimately as soft propaganda candy, and maybe a good entry overview of some segmented phenomenon related to urban cultures.
HASH(0xa870ffcc) out of 5 stars Amazing quality except for the fat "USED" stickers that come ... Oct. 3 2014
By Jimi - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Amazing quality except for the fat "USED" stickers that come slapped on the cover and the back. They should use a different system. I could really care less, got nearly brand new book for cheap, idk if all business do this...
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa8851378) out of 5 stars perfect gift Feb. 18 2014
By Samantha - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ibought this book as a gift for my boyfriend who is a little hard to buy for. He really likes it, so imhappy about that. I flipped through it resently and found some amazing art. Ordering and getting the shipment in was simple also.
7 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa83a9270) out of 5 stars Censored Art In the Streets Aug. 7 2011
By Irish in LA - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Keep in mind that Jeffrey Deitch insisted on the destruction of a mural painted especially for this exhibit (by the artist Blu). Blu's mural showed coffins draped in dollar bills. Deitch said he felt the mural would be offensive to the neighbors at the nearby VA, and to Japanese (the MOCA Geffen gallery is in Little Tokyo, and the mural was eyeshot from a WWII war memorial for Japanese-American soldiers).; however, none of the neighbors said a peep about the mural. There were no complaints.

The truth is ... Deitch was worried about riling up Sarah Palin and her ilk, and having MOCA get attacked on FOX News. Therefore, no anti-war statements in public.

This exhibition is scarred by Deitch's censorship for political reasons, and the museum suffers from his poor judgement in general.