The Tate Innovates...

Design by Edel Rodriguez

The label Street Art has been used since the late Seventies, and the work, by its very nature, is in constant flux and hard to categorise. Broadly speaking the term has come to define the more visual and engaging urban art as opposed to text-based graffiti and tagging.
Today & for the first time ever, the Tate Modern --The Tate Modern in London is Britain's national museum of international modern art-- has commissioned artists to paint the facade of its building along the Thames, signaling the project as the first major public museum display of Street Art in London.

Street Art at Tate Modern brings to the fore an important aspect of current art practice and one that has influenced acclaimed artists, including Basquiat and Picasso.
So finally, street art gets a major recognition by an institution that could hardly be topped, in terms of established art: The Tate Modern of London. The works of six internationally acclaimed artists will be presented to tag the museum's fa├žade.
The artists are: Blu from Bologna, Italy; the artist collective Faile from New York, USA; JR from Paris, France; Nunca and Os Gemeos, both from Sao Paulo, Brazil and Sixeart from Barcelona, Spain. All six artists are represented in major collections around the world and regularly shown in gallery exhibitions and biennales; but their work began in public urban spaces and remains indebted to Street Art and graffiti traditions.

Street Art at Tate Modern opened at the same time as Tate Modern’s four day festival of art and performance, where 'The Street Art Walking Tour,' an urban tour of specific art sites around the city is scheduled and presented by a group of five Madrid-based artists: 3TTMan, Spok, Nano 4814, El Tono and Nuria.
In addition to that unexpected yet eclectic & formidable happening at Tate, an interactive evening with experimental New York artists, Graffiti Research Lab, is set to reface the Tate Modern with graffiti light projections. Street Art at Tate Modern running through 23 May-August 25th 2008 at Tate Modern, Bankside London SE1 9TG.

Exclusive photos by Sirdab correspondent: Gina Mansour

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