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T4C Street Art Battle & Awards

Thursday, April 26, 2012

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Art Battle

Where and When

Robert Reynolds at the Continental Gallery | 6pm to 8pm
408 S. Spring Street • Los Angeles, CA 90013

Farmers & Merchants Bank | 8pm to 9.30pm
401 S. Main Street • Los Angeles, CA 90013


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About the Art Battle

To celebrate the BritWeek T4C Artists Competition Closing Ceremony, BritWeek will host Art Battle LA, paying homage to the 2012 Summer Games' theme on sustainability and its overall spirit of unified competition across borders.

This special event night will feature a live Art Battle between four notorious names in the London and Los Angeles street and graffiti art scenes. Two UK artists and two LA artists will go head to head in the spirit of unified competition. Battle grounds will be held at the historic arts district core of Downtown Los Angeles. Audience members will have the opportunity to view the Art Battle live throughout the evening. Art Battle participants have been set forth the challenge to paint one-of-a-kind designs onto recycled furniture pieces by globally acclaimed furniture designer Christopher Guy, who will preside at the Battle. All proceeds will go towards supporting Hollywood Arts.

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The Artists

EINE (click to expand and collapse)

Eine EINE (Ben Flynn, b. 1970, London, UK) shot to international fame when David Cameron presented one of his works to President Obama as a gift on his first official state visit. He is arguably more famous for 'Alphabet Street' – the shutters and murals he painted in his trademark colors and typography in Middlesex Street, London - described by The Times as "a street now internationally recognized as a living piece of art with direct links to The White House."

Ben Eine is one of London’s most prolific and original street artists who specializes in the central element of all graffiti – the form of letters. Originally a writer, he started his career over twenty five years ago as a vandal leaving his first tag all over London before eventually developing a distinct typographic style. He specializes in producing huge letters on shop fronts and his bright, colorful letters have transformed streets in cities around the world, including LA, San Francisco, Mexico City, Miami, Paris, Dublin, Tokyo, Stockholm and his home city of London.

Eine's most recent solo show at White Walls gallery in San Francisco sold out prior to opening. He was also included in the biggest exhibition of street art to date: Art in the Streets at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA), Los Angeles.

In 2011, Eine was invited by Amnesty International to design their 50th anniversary poster, joining other artists such as Picasso and Miro in supporting the charity through art.

From single letters to complex and wry statements, Eine has left his mark worldwide. His letters transgress the usual stylized image devised to depict form and emotion and through a combination of color, placement and size they become striking, effective, abstract and unique works of art in their own right.

INKIE (click to expand and collapse)

InkieInkie (Tom Bingle, b.1970, Bristol, UK) is one of the most notorious and prolific graffiti writers in UK history to emerge out of the 80’s Bristol scene. Painting alongside 3D, Nick Walker and Banksy, in 1989, the 'Kingpin' was arrested as the head of 72 other writers in the UK's largest ever graffiti bust, Operation Anderson.

Inkie has since worked as head of design for SEGA, Xbox, and currently works as Jade Jagger’s in-house designer as well as running a West London design studio creating prints, illustrations, clothing. His trademark beauty, typically created on large-scale pieces, flows from diverse inspirations - Mayan architecture, William Morris, Mouse & Kelly, Alphons Mucha and Islamic geometry.

Denounced as "Banksy’s right hand man" by The Daily Mail while simultaneously lauded by The Times, Inkie’s art has been published in several books such as Banksy’s Bristol, Children of the Can, Graffiti World and Street Fonts; in magazines including GQ and Dazed & Confused; and was featured in the 2007 LA graffiti documentary Bomb It.

The artist has exhibited worldwide with recent exhibitions in London, Barcelona, Los Angeles, Ibiza, Warsaw and Lisbon. Inkie’s work is coveted by celebrity collectors, including Robbie Williams, Jade Jagger, Fatboy Slim, Massive Attack, Sean Pertwee and Roni Size.

The Telegraph: Street Art Pioneer • Daily Mail: Banksy’s right hand man
LeCool: A Legend of the UK urban art scene • Rolling Stone: British Graffiti King
British Transport Police: The Kingpin of the Bristol scene • Banksy: That’s F**king pretty

MAN ONE (click to expand and collapse)

Man OneMAN ONE (Alejandro Poli Jr., b. 1971, Los Angeles, CA), an artist, teacher and entrepreneur, believes in the transformational power of art and its power to save lives and make the world a better place. He believes art gives mankind an essential and irreplaceable cultural language in which to express and know itself. Man One believes art can transcend cultural and socio-economic barriers, fostering understanding, mutual respect and unity among disparate peoples. Man One believes these things are possible because he's seen them happen through the power of his own art and the art of others.

Growing up in Los Angeles, Man One developed his love for art, developing his skills as a graffiti artist on the streets of LA. He honed his talents as a fine artist and understanding of art history at Loyola Marymount University where he earned his Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts.

Over the years, Man One has worked with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control, The Mexican Consulate in the U.S., and most recently received a Speaker and Specialist Grant by the U.S. State Department to work with the U.S. Embassy in Panama. There he demonstrated to Panamanian children and teenagers how art could build self-esteem and self-respect to help you overcome any situation.

In 2011, he was invited to North Ireland (twice) where he painted murals and conducted workshops to help foster understanding and mutual respect among young Irish Catholics and Protestants. He has led similar workshops in Japan, Germany, Mexico and throughout the United States.

Man One's art is comprised of his trademark bold, colorful art strokes and has been featured in ten solo shows, countless group exhibitions, and curated well over a hundred. His work has been exhibited in many museums including the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, The Getty, Pasadena Museum of California Art, LACMA, Orange County Center for Contemporary Art in Santa Ana, Pacific Asia Museum in Pasadena, Parco Museum in Tokyo and the Smithsonian Institute in Washington D.C. His artwork is collected internationally and has shown in galleries around the world including Australia, Germany, New Zealand, Mexico, UK, Japan, and Switzerland among others.

In 2002, Man One founded Crewest Gallery in Los Angeles to legitimize graffiti art as a valuable and collectible art form and give graffiti artists a professional venue and forum in which to showcase their work. In the book, Graffiti L.A., street art documentarian Steve Grody listed the opening of Crewest Gallery as a milestone event in the history of graffiti art in Los Angeles. Ten years on, Crewest continues to be a leader in the world of collectible graffiti art.

Man One and his art have been featured in many television shows such as MTV’s Pimp My Ride, ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, America’s Next Top Model, and The Contender to name a few. On the silver screen he has appeared in John Tucker Must Die (Revolution Studios), The Roommate (Screen Gems), Burn Hollywood Burn (Cinergi) and featured in television commercials for Ford, Microsoft, Target and Verizon.

He has painted live on stage at some of the largest U.S. music concerts and festivals including tours for MTV with the Black Eyed Peas, De La Soul and Wyclef Jean as well as traveling across the country on the Van’s Warped Tour performing side by side with bands like 311, Blink182, and Good Charlotte. He has performed with music legends like George Clinton and Parliament-Funkadelic.

Man One has been commissioned commercially by a plethora of corporations including Coca-Cola, Disney, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Carmax, Oakley, Dickies Girl, Pioneer, Symantec, EA Sports and Ubisoft to name a few.

Man One has been recognized for his unwavering support for many charitable causes, donating his time and talents painting and teaching art on behalf of The HeArt Project, I Am Angel Foundation, The Center for Biological Diversity, and Heal the Bay. In 2009, The HeArt Project selected Man One as the recipient of that year’s Artist award for his significant contributions to their important cause of arts education among underprivileged youth in Los Angeles. He was also acknowledged, with a RIVIE award, for artist of the year in 2008 by the Friends of the Los Angeles River.

Man One's artwork has been profiled and featured in a number of international magazines, newspapers and books including The L.A. Times, The Washington Post, New York Magazine, Warp Magazine (Japan), Angeleno (USA), 38Times (Japan), Lowrider Arte Magazine (USA), Rime Magazine (USA), La Dolce Vita (Italy), Aelle (Italy), Backspin (Germany), Rap Pages (USA), “Graffiti World” (by Nicholas Ganz), “Painting the Towns: California Murals” (by Jim Prigoff and Robin Dunitz), “Graffiti L.A.” (by Steve Grody) and is mentioned in “The History of American Graffiti” (by Roger Gastman and Caleb Neelon).

Man One's life work is about putting the power of art in the hands, hearts and minds of people all over the world. Everything Man One has done to date is about democratizing art and educating others about the unique value of graffiti art. Moving forward, Man One will continue his life's work as an artist, teacher and entrepreneur in order to empower mankind and facilitate a more beautiful, fair and just world through the power of art.

MEAR ONE (click to expand and collapse)

Mear OneMEAR ONE (Kalen Ockerman, b. 1971, Santa Cruz, CA) is a contemporary American artist based in Los Angeles. He began his career in 1986 as a graffiti artist living in Los Angeles and has been labeled as "The Michelangelo of Graffiti" and "The Salvador Dali of Hip-Hop." He is considered by many to be Los Angeles' most prolific graffiti artist because of the way he revolutionized graffiti with his fine-art realism, breaking out of traditional 2D letter forms, and using perspective to develop complex characters with dynamic backgrounds in epic scale.

By the early 1990's, he had established a large fan base through his notorious work on the streets, underground hip-hop album covers featuring his iconic imagery, and his involvement in pioneering early street wear clothing and graffiti culture. In 1993, MEAR was the first graffiti artist from Los Angeles to travel to Tokyo and paint graffiti in front of a live public audience.

In the mid 90's, hip hop imagery and cultural icons in his work were replaced with a deeper, more introspective conversation based around a politically disillusioned reality that he felt hip-hop had ceased to address. At this point he began his transition from street graffiti to canvas paintings, and began his first body of acrylic and airbrushed paintings.

In 1996, MEAR ONE began performing at live events, and coined the term "Live Art" to describe the spontaneous, performative, and interactive act of painting in front of a live audience, which he considered akin to freestyle poetry and music. In 1998, MEAR was given the back editorial page of Urb Magazine, "The Final Exam," which served as his vehicle for social commentary for a span of 33 issues over 3 years. In 1999, MEAR ONE was acknowledged for his contribution to graffiti art by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, during their exhibition, "Roots, Rhyme, + Rage: The Hip-Hop Story," commemorating 20 years of hip-hop history. In 2000, MEAR ONE was selected among the world's most accomplished graffiti artists for Guernseys Graffiti Art: The Auction, in conjunction with the Bronx Museum's first major exhibition on graffiti art in the United States. In 2002, MEAR had his ground breaking solo exhibition at the politically oriented 33 1/3 Gallery in Los Angeles, the site where Bansky would make his Los Angeles debut later that year. In 2004, MEAR ONE, Robbie Conal, and Shepard Fairey organized a cross-country art tour, Be the Revolution, to raise awareness of the evils of the Bush-Cheney campaign.

In 2010, MEAR joined with Kofie, Mac and Retna to form Vox Humana, a Live Art painting installation, which performed at The Los Angeles Art Show, and Volta 6 Art Fair in Basel, Switzerland. That same year, MEAR painted Live Art at the Coachella Valley Music Festival in front of 90,000 people and was voted one of the "Most Interesting People To See at Coachella" by LA Weekly.

In 2011, MEAR ONE was selected to be showcased in two critically acclaimed museum exhibitions of street art and graffiti, Art in the Streets at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and Street Cred at the Padadena Museum of California Art.

MEAR ONE's work is inspired by ancient technology, science, philosophy, mythology and mysticism, along with political and cultural revolution, and notions of the apocalypse. MEAR creates his own mythology from pop culture icons and important historic persons that have shaped our structured reality. He uses art as a tool to express his feelings of frustration with what he feels is a broken system. MEAR uses visual language to provide a critical viewpoint that exposes the history of corruption in America and the world at large. The diversity in his work often depicts an experience of transcendence in sharp contrast with depictions of the horrors of humanity, war, and oppression. His current body of work can be described as a series of allegorical oil paintings that draw upon history, mythology, political theory, conspiracy theory, modern myths, and current events. Stylistically he has been described as "urban psychedelic surreal," and is perhaps best known for his climactic battle scenes taking place under broad expansive cityscapes with billowing cumulous clouds.

Selected recent exhibitions include: Art in the Streets, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2011), Street Cred, Pasadena Museum of California Art (2011), Scope Art Fair, Basel, Switzerland (2010), Volta 6 Art Fair, Basel, Switzerland (2010), Los Angeles Art Show (2010), Vox Humana: El Mac, Kofie, Mear One, and Retna, Rivera & Rivera Gallery, Los Angeles, CA (2010)

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Guest Judges and Host


Christopher Guy HarrisonInternationally renowned furnishings designer and manufacturer CHRISTOPHER GUY HARRISON was born in Britain, raised in Spain and France, and now resides mainly in Singapore. Britweek 2012 sees the exciting opening of two major Christopher Guy stores in LA and NY, adding to a long global list that stretches from Shanghai to Moscow, Sydney to Milan, and Paris to London’s famous Harrods department store.

Christopher’s eye for details, passion for design and ability to capture and reflect a distinctively classic yet contemporary mood has ensured that the Christopher Guy brand remains at the forefront of luxury furnishings. The core values of elegance, sophistication and refinement are encapsulated in each uniquely hand-carved decorative piece, redefining trends and appealing to international audiences. Christopher Guy furnishings have graced the residences of countless Hollywood celebrities, major film sets, and the lobbies of luxury hotels and resorts around the globe, and remains a proud associate of the Anglo-American Britweek community in LA.

PRESENTER / HOST: BRUCE REYNOLDS (expand / collapse)

Bruce ReynoldsBruce Reynolds has appeared on British and American national television, in shows ranging from BBC Breakfast to BBC World News to ABC entertainment show OTRC and E!. He was the first Black British male in the United Kingdom to gradate with an MA in Television Journalism with Distinction (the highest honors at masters degree level). He also has an MBA in international business and works with and global consumer brands such as Mercedes Benz, Ebay, NIKE, General Motors, American Express and many more.

To further his humanitarian beliefs, Bruce wrote, directed and produced documentary Equation of Change, narrated by Sir Richard Branson and Joanne Griffith. He's also a Women in Film (WIF) mentor and Patron of Cinemagic.

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BritWeek T4C Artists Competition Awards Ceremony

Following the Art Battle, all guests are invited to a cocktail reception for the BritWeek T4C Artists Competition Awards Ceremony. The Awards Ceremony is a high-profile media event to take place on the evening of Thursday, 26 April 2012 where winners of the Los Angeles juried competition and public vote will be announced. Winners of the T4C Los Angeles competition will be awarded the opportunity to showcase their work at the Finalists Exhibition in London during the Olympics in August 2012.

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Art Walk Los Angeles Chaucer Freight The Standard Hotel Virgin Atlantic KCET Hollywood Arts Christopher Guy LA Art Association Art Platform Los Angeles Art Below CL Projects Gilmore Associates Copyland Printing Big Man Bakes Jaguar