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The latest incarnation of Mr. Brainwash's studio wall - a huge repetition of the cover he designed for Madonna's 'Celebration' album.

I was going to write something about whether this is 'just advertising', or whether this is 'just a Warhol/Banksy rip'; but I'll leave it to you to decide. If you're so inclined, let me know what you think @unurth.

See more by Mr. Brainwash.

artist: Mr. Brainwash
location: La Brea, Los Angeles






New stuff from the amazing Blu; a role reversal - bikes crushing cars. See more Blu here.

artist: Blu
location: Lambrate Rail Station, Milan, Italy

images by Porpora60

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I like to keep the words on unurth pretty minimal, because I want the focus on great street art. But I'm going to publish some interviews with a few of my favorite artists - typically those who haven't said it all a hundred times before. First up, the wonderful Escif:

I sense a mental struggle in many of the characters you paint - is that true? What emotions do you try to convey in your work?
Although sometimes is not easy to separate, I try to focus my work around concepts, not just shapes. I try to found my style like the consequences of my own ideas.
I understand the painting as an exercise of reflection that can be shared with people.
I´m not looking for decorative paintings, I try to wake up viewers' minds.


Does the black hole that features in your recent work represent depression, or the underworld, or adventure, or something else?
I understand painting as a continuous process of searching, in which I can develop different ideas. Around this process, I get to many different symbols, that are used in my own compositions. Like the black hole, just to mention one, meaning the underground is a symbol I have been using in my recent works. It can be used in an ironic or in a poetic way.
Anyway i think people must have their own interpretation.


Walls also feature prominently, some of them running - what do they represent?
The wall is a strong symbol inside the street art movement. It has been used as a big support for almost all the interventions. But not many people had thought about it this way. With some of my paintings I try to reflect on the walls.

What are the other themes you like to work with?
I like to work with any idea that involves me in a direct or indirect way.

What are your main influences - art and otherwise?
I'm influenced by many different artists, but I try to take my own ideas in different ways. Trying to open my mind to anything that's happening around me. Traveling and reading the most I can is one of the ways I find to inspire myself.


What would your ideal project be? (theme, collaborators, location etc.)
Buff…such a difficult question to answer!! I really cannot think now of an ideal project. I like to adapt myself to any different conditions that come up in life. I think that a lot of projects I'm working on at the moment, they can be ideal ones.

If you could buy any three pieces of art, which would you buy?
One of the last Pablo Picasso canvases, a cool Mauritzio Cattelan intervention and one big black Herbert Baglioni painting would be three pieces of art I could possibly buy if I was rich. Anyway I prefer found art in the street. There nobody must pay to enjoy it.


Which artist(s) do you admire, or are influencing you at the moment? Are there other artists in Valencia you work with?
There are many different artists I admire all over the world; Blu and his awesome murals, Herbert Baglione's elegant and big paintings, San´s crazy drawings, Hello Monsters shiny and mad installations are just some to mention.
I have lot of respect as well for many different artists that don't work in street art, like Mauritzio Cattelan, Santiago Sierra, Felix Gonzalez Torres, as many others.

In Valencia generally I work on my own, but I also enjoy working with On_ly (as well with other members of XLF), with DOCS (Graffilia), and recently with Hyuro.

Other than art, what are your passions?
My family, my friends, and my girlfriend … and continuing to learn during my life.


What's next for you? What shows or projects do you have planned?
I'm negotiating one exhibition in Germany for the end of this year. For next year, I'm planning some collective shows around South America, some other collaborations in Valencia and a solo show in Barcelona.

What everyone should know is...
That street keeps in the streets, not inside art spaces.

See more recent work by Escif here, and check out his flickr

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The MBW artwork for Madonna's 'Celebration' album cover wrapping an LA electric box.

For all the debate about Brainwash, I think this is a good piece. I've been critical of his over-use of this concept in the past, but for a Madonna album cover, it works. A lot of people will disagree with me, and that's fine.

It's an interesting moment for street art - Banksy did a Blur album cover, but this is about as high profile as it gets. It'll be interesting to watch what this does to his career.

artist: Mr. Brainwash
location: Melrose & Highland, Los Angeles

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Nick Walker was in LA last week, and hit several different walls around West Hollywood. Nick had said he was moving on from his Vandal series after the 'Sequence of events' show in London recently, and this is certainly a new style - although he told me it's not definitely his new direction - he's still playing with different ideas.
The 'does my head look big in this?' brat is clearly aimed at the Hollywood scene, and the girl peeking out of the chihauhua's bag is Nicole Ritchie.

Nick also put up some new work in his friend's salon at Fred Segal Santa Monica; check out this gallery:

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artist: Nick Walker
location: Sunset Blvd & Highland Ave, Los Angeles

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