ILL FAME MAGAZINE 07 – RELOADED – Texts
The Ill Fame magazine in the Reloaded version sees its third issue with this issue No. 7. This time we received a lot of material that we personally do not like to see on the web, but which we prefer to do justice to in print and in the appropriate publication format. The selection is made with conscience, awareness and meritocracy, but if you think that this is not the case, please send us what you think is most deserving, otherwise we publish photos from our archive or photos you send us. I hope you enjoy this summer effort and that it gives you an insight into who and where to look for quality, knowledge and historical credibility. P.s. In a garage in southern Italy, a box was found with a few old copies of the first issues of the magazine. Write to us if you are interested. Anticipation: in the next issue some of the material from issue 05 of 2004, which has never been published, will be published. Issue 8 will be published on the occasion of Amazing Day 2024, which will take place from 31 May to 2 June in Opera (MI). Send us your best material and we look forward to seeing you.
MR.WANY – THE BOOK
Shortly (by 2024) the first monographic book by Mr.WanyUes active in writing since 1990 “non stop” will see the light of day.A reference point for Hip Hop culture in Italy as an artist, with a unique style in lettering as well as in characters.Always ready to organise events from the early 90s to the creation of the longest running event in Italy, Amazing Day, at its 17th edition in 2024.Over the years he has taught several generations of different artists, founded or been part of several local or international crews such as TSK, PDB, PUF,GBF, TDK and HA. He has organised and participated in events, workshops, talks and live performances all over the world with his studio The Amazing Art, and founded the self-produced magazine Ill Fame in 1996. After years and years of work, this project will finally come to life, the result of an impressive archiving process, the scanning of countless black books and countless analogue and digital photos. It will start from his earliest illustrations, his school of comics to his work in the world of Japanese anime and manga, as well as his experience as a break dancer, to his beginnings as a tattoo artist, passing datag, bombing, trains, the study of straight letters, semi-wild lettering and the most extreme ‘wild style’, to continue with big brand commissions, street art, new muralism, site-specific projects, digital and canvas painting with exhibitions in galleries and museums all over the world – in short, a lot of stuff!To find out more, follow his IG page: mrwanys and pre-order the book at www.theamazingart.com
LOGAN – B A R R A C U D A – S P A G N A
Josén was born in 1977 in the humble and hard-working San Pablo industrial district of Seville. But it was only in 1989 that Logan, his alter ego, was born, when he came into contact with hip hope culture and created his first graffiti.A defender from the beginning of the importance of the artistic heritage of his land, in his first interviews he shows his concern for the need to create a legacy in Seville graffiti. He is currently the only one of his generation still active. He has distinguished himself for his great creative capacity, which has led him to have his own style, made up of very complex characters and scenes. In the latter, he integrates his work in generally neglected urban locations and media, with deteriorated, generally unremarkable textures, and reinvents them using a very wide range of illustrative registers. If Logan was born in 1989, it was in 2004 that he earned his surname. After touring Europe to showcase his style and his work, he began his career as a tattoo artist and creator of a clothing brand: Barracuda. Far from starting from scratch, he decided to incorporate what he had learnt in the graffiti world into his tattoos, thus creating the balanced fusion that Logan Barracuda represents. As a tattoo artist, he will participate in conventions such as the Paris Tattoo WorldCup, the Evian Tattoo Show or the Lisbon Tattoo Convention, where he will not only win prizes, but also give seminars to many tattoo artists around the world. He will become a great reference for tattooing because he will be able to adapt the essence of graffiti to tattooing, developing a distinctive style with characters of pale aesthetics combined with impossible and timeless atmospheres.This mixture will be enriched by the inclusion of natural motives and the great influence that Asian art has on his style. He currently combines his work in tattooing, graffiti and illustration with his extensive research of new illustrative and visual techniques in different media.
_When did you start painting?
I started drawing as a child and in 1989 I did my first piece.
_Are you connected to hip hop culture or do you just write?
Apart from writing, I have always been part of the hip-hop culture but I have only focused on graffiti.
_You are best known for your characters, but you also do lettering. How do you live this duality?
Before tattooing it was more common that I only did characters and a few letters from time to time, but in practice even in tattooing I use lettering, and for what little I do paint, due to lack of time since I tattoo, when I do it I feel I need to paint letters.
_How and when did you get into tattooing?
I got into tattooing in the late 90s through contact with the first writers in Spain who had started tattooing and following their advice to give it a try. A writer friend had given me a tattoo kit but I didn’t start until 2004 because I knew I needed absolute constancy in tattooing.
_What do you think about the current street art scene. What would you change?
I don’t look at a lot of street art, but more at classic graffiti and illustrators, painters, photographers, etc… I wouldn’t change anything, I would just show the immensity of good artists there are who are still unknown.
_What are your plans for the future?
I have had my studio in Seville since 2008 and I hope to keep it going for a long time to come, continuing to travel, paint, tattoo and everything related. I have good illustration projects and always some plan in my head that I hope to show. As for sculptures, it is something I have wanted to do for a long time, and in fact, I am about to make my first forays in this direction. Maybe next year you will see the first results. Let’s see. Exhibitions are also on hold. Starting next year, these too will intensify. This year, for me, painting walls was in the foreground, as well as my work on free projects and the university. Who knows what tomorrow will bring.
THE WUNDERKAMMERN GALLERY
Alessandra Orlandi and Giulia Torri
The Wunderkammern gallery was born from a project of patronage and experimentation conceived by Franco Ottavianelli, AfraZucchi and Giuseppe Ottavianelli. Over time, several partners joined in, including Giuseppe Pizzuto and, most recently, Galleria Deodato. The first historical location in the Torpignattara district of Rome was opened in 2008, in 2016 a second location in Milan and in 2022 a new one in Via Giulia. Wunderkammern promotes an international programme of excellence in contemporary artistic research in its various forms and languages. The gallery represents emerging, mid-career and established artists, and aims to create a stimulating environment of experimentation and dialogue in forterelation with the public. In collaboration with art academies, museums and cultural institutions, Wunderkammern also organises collateral events outside the gallery spaces in specific locations, with the aim of promoting its artists and their research. Today we interview the general managers of the respective galleries in Rome and Milan: Alessandra Orlandi and Giulia Torri.
_Tell us briefly who you are and what is your experience to date in this project.
Alessandra Orlandi started working for Gallery Wunderkammern as GalleryManager in both the Milan and Rome offices in 2018. The first exhibition she organised was with the internationally renowned artistAakash Nihalani. Today she is the General Manager of the Milan and Rome venues, supervising the teams of the two cities, working on the programming of exhibitions and managing the relationship with the artists with whom the Gallery collaborates. Giulia Torri is the Gallery Manager of the Wunderkammern Gallery in Rome, initially located only in the Via Serbelloni location. In 2022, she inaugurated the headquarters in the capital by sending Giulia with the exhibition ‘Strategies for a revolution’ by Shepard Fairey. Her main activities include organising exhibitions and assistingAlessandra in dealing with artists.
_What criteria are used to select the artists with whom you collaborate?
The curatorial line is mainly proposed by Giuseppe Pizzuto, a lawyer and great lover of hip-hop as well as urban art, and shared with the other members, who are always attentive to the most interesting novelties in the artistic field. The gallery tries to follow two main lines: proposing established artists who are already known to the ‘general public’ and who have played a central role in the development and evolution of this ‘movement’ – think of Invader, Blek Le Rat, Shepard Fairey (Obey), JonOne – and other lesser-known artists who have contributed something to the evolution of this very complicated phenomenon, which today falls into the cauldron we like to call ‘contemporary urban art’. Post CovidThe artists with whom we have organised important exhibitions are Obey, D*Face, Blek le rat, but also many Italian artists such as Hogre, Solomostry, Sten Lex, Masitoand Esa.
_Which projects and artists have given you most satisfaction in intellectual and economic terms?
The most ambitious project in terms of organisation and coordination of activities was certainly the one involving Wunderkammern at the MMOMA in Moscow in 2018, where the first solo exhibition in Russia of the artist Shepard Fairey (Obey), entitled ‘Force Majeure’, was realised. A project that counted more than 400 works set up in addition to the creation of two murals at strategic points in the city. More generally, we can say that every exhibition and project we propose gives us a certain degree of satisfaction.
_What complexities are there when organising an exhibition of an international artist?
The Gallery has been collaborating for years with artists from both Europe and the United States with whom it organises exhibitions both in Italy and abroad, even participating in international fairs. A first difficulty is certainly the management of the ‘long-distance’ dialogue. Even though Covid has accustomed us to being more efficient with all the tools (videocalls, etc.) of long-distance communication, we manage to dispose of many more points when we are able to meet in person. Certainly, logistics require more time for inspections, which also have to be carried out by the artists to assess the exhibition spaces, as well as for transport and the handling of customs formalities concerning the works of art.
_What do you think of the general approximation by galleries and collectors that is often, but fortunately not always, noticeable around the street art and style writing market? By proposing surrogates and banal copies with copied and badly realised flops and tags or stencil clones of Blek le Rat or Banksy?
Street art is a very complicated thing to define. Being something that, in alternating cycles, seems to be ‘in fashion’, it is normal that someone tries to ride the wave and propose to a perhaps less attentive public artists who – to put it very politically correct – are ‘inspired’ a lot by other, much better known and relevant names in the movement. We have always thought of differentiating ourselves by proposing works precisely by those artists who in most cases have been a great source of inspiration as well as a strong influence for all others. We think that this is the added value we can offer our fans and collectors.
_What do you think of the Italian art scene? Does it have valid representatives in the world?
The ‘Italian scene’ is not exempt from the problems that affect this complex and multifaceted universe of ‘street art’. We think that the Italian scene can certainly have its say in the world and that it has some respectable representatives. In some countries, such as France, street art has been much more appreciated and followed for many years, and artists are much more accustomed to dialogue with the art ‘system’. In Italy there have been many ups and downs, so the situation is still uncertain, but we have some really interesting artists with whom we have been collaborating on a regular basis for some time, such as 2501, Sten Lex, Microbo and Bo130, Solomostry, Tellas, Hogre and many others.
_How do you think the market for this artistic genre will develop in the coming years at this particular moment in history? (Covid, war, artificial intelligence).
Very difficult question. The forms of expression happening in the urban space (from writing to the new muralism) will also have space in the years to come. The market will at some point focus on the historicisation of different figures and this should give a boost to all the artists of this movement with a market presence. It will also be very interesting to understand the evolution of the digital universe (from NFT to virtual reality). Wunderkammern belongs to the Deodato group, which is already working in this direction and is increasingly involving the gallery: Lieu.City’s augmented reality platform on which institutional exhibitions and works in physical locations are uploaded is the clearest demonstration of this. In any case, we believe that the direct experience in the gallery (perhaps the meeting and exchange with the artist) is something irreplaceable, without forgetting that the alternatives offered by the virtual world can be an additional valid tool to broaden the range of fruition, guaranteeing accessibility to anyone, anywhere, at any time.
_What do you think about NFTs? Do you guys deal with this?
What does 2023 and 2024 hold for us?
Can you tell us about future projects?
NFTs are also a very complex and difficult subject. Let’s say that we have not yet formed a definitive view. We collaborate with some artists who are open to this world and we market some NFT produced by them. To date we do not co-produce NFT but we do not exclude the possibility of doing so in the future. At the moment, we perhaps think that the most interesting thing about NFTs is their conceptual nature rather than the aesthetic product.
_What does 2023 and 2024 hold for us? Can you tell us about future projects?
We have a lot of very interesting projects in the pipeline! We will open in 2024 with an institutional exhibition at the Gallery of Modern Art in Rome featuring the artistic duo Miaz Brothers. Following this, we have been working for some time with a very successful international artist, to organise an exhibition in a museum in Milan, although we cannot reveal details for now. We will pursue projects with artists represented by the gallery such as Jef Aerosol, but also with completely new artists. As a foretaste, we can only tell you that we are working with our eyes on the international scene, and that in addition to continuing to present some of the names with whom we have been collaborating for years, we will also be expanding the proposal with new artists.
_Thoughts and greetings.
Thank you very much for the interview! If you want to keep up to date with the Gallery’s activities, I recommend you come and have a look at our website wunderkammern.net and subscribe to our newsletter. And if you want to visit us, you can find us in Rome and Milan.