On the heels of his current solo show at Joshua Liner Gallery, Steve “ESPO” Powers came through the Tribeca Grand Hotel with Joey Garfield for a screening of A Love Letter for You, their documentary/narrative film about the much-celebrated Love Letter mural project that went down in Philly about two years ago. The film brings ESPO and the Love Letter squad into a semi-fictional narrative surrounding a young writer’s quest to reach a special someone, and is a huge treat for any graffiti/mural/underdog fan. Put together with some archive ESPO footage, an original script co-written by Powers, and a killer shoegazey soundtrack, LL4U will hit you right in the heartstrings. No use even trying to fight it.
Until the film finds a much-deserved wider release, you can catch the trailer after the jump.
Ice Man, beauti-loser, and love letter scribe Steve Powers is hitting NYC’s Joshua Liner Gallery with a solo show on September 6th. You can expect some pretty tasty typography and graphics from the artist this go-round. The show is entitled A Word is Worth A Thousand Pictures and is definitely one to check out in person. The works on display range from 10-x-8 in. to 10-x-10 feet, and include Powers’ “Metaltations”- spontaneous enamel works on aluminum. And if you can’t make it over to Chelsea before September 29th, check out a preview of the show below.
Last night, Jonathan Levine Gallery in Chelsea, NYC opened a group show entitled Détournement : Signs of the Times. The show includes works from some big names including Ron English, Shepard Fairey, Jamie Reid, Steve Powers, and Aiko Nakagawa. “Détournement” refers to the practice of altering the face of public signage to change their respective meanings. From curator Carlo McCormick (editor of PAPER magazine):
Employed brilliantly by the Situationists, whose great philosopher Guy Debord laid out the socio-aesthetic framework for this practice, détournements twist the terms of mimicry in ironic parody using the a semblance of the easily recognizable to dissemble and redirect the literal meaning of signs so as to construe a more honest picture of their deceptive intentions.
A natural response to the lies and coercions we are fed on a daily basis, the détournement has been the reactive impulse of all those who question reality, from the Punks who adopted it in the 1970s through Culture Jammers, Adbusters, contemporary street artists and the winding legacy of protest movements from WTO to Occupy.
A Love Letter For You is the name of the current project by NYC graffiti artist Steve Powers, aka ESPO. A recent recipient of a Fulbright grant, Powers is using the money to make these beautiful murals around Philadelphia with the help of local teenagers. The murals, which are clearly very heavily inspired by 20th century American sign painting/vernacular graphic design, are some of my favorite pieces of street art I’ve seen in a while.