Street art exhibit draws misfits, intellectuals, and eccentrics

by Sofya Levina / Beacon Staff • February 16, 2012

Streetwall chapman
With a combination of methods, the artists created an atmosphere both aesthetically pleasing, and a little outlandish.
With a combination of methods, the artists created an atmosphere both aesthetically pleasing, and a little outlandish.
You know you’ve made it to Fourth Wall’s Street Wall: An Exhibit of Street Art show if the dizzying scent of beer is tickling the hairs inside your nose, and soft whispers about “existential expressionism” cloud your hearing. The grand opening Saturday, Feb. 4, brought together misfits, intellectuals, hipsters, and eccentrics to participate in an evening of street art appreciation.

The Fourth Wall Project at 132 Brookline Ave, was founded in 2009 by Bodega, an urban clothing distributor. The Project aims to create a workable art venue for alternative exhibitions. The Street Wall brought together artists LNY, Radical!, Tiptoe, Nanook, The Phantom, Geoff Hargadon, Zatara and Blackmath. Using wheat paste, screen printing, traditional graffiti, film, and performance, the artists created an atmosphere both aesthetically pleasing, and a little outlandish.

“We’re giving spaces to liberate artists,” said Oliver Mak, Fourth Wall founder and director, and Bodega founder and designer. “I started by just throwing loft parties for artists. We created Fourth Wall as a way to have a club house and as a platform for artists to exhibit their artwork and it just so happens that most of our contemporary artists work in the streets. We wanted to bring this platform to Boston because there is not a lot here for the zany, the weird, and the artsy.”

Intricately detailed flowers create an urban meadow on the cold slabs of concrete. Zatara’s nude of a wild-woman contrasted with Geoff Hargadon’s simplistic “CA$H FOR YOUR WARHOL” signs, llustrating the variety within the genre of street art.

In The Phantom’s movie, a man with a heavy accent describes his search for the American dream. In the short video, he repeatedly told the viewers to forget about art, and to eat pizza. While the crowd watches the projection, a woman in a long lavender dress runs up to viewers with a notebook. In a frenzy of movement, she flashed a page covered in the logo “Mr. Master Pizza.”  

The Fourth Wall Street Wall show opened its doors to offer new opportunities for America’s street artists.

“It’s the largest art movement the world has ever seen with the largest amount of participants and it is the greatest art movement I will see in my lifetime,” said Mak. “It’s an honor to be a part of it.”