Gallery Crawl spotlights art that doesn't hang on gallery walls. Some
great shots of stencil art, as well as other forms of street art, here
in San Francisco.
For well over 10 years now, I have been documenting stencils on Bruce Tomb's wall on Valencia Street (If you search the Archives for "DAP" they will appear). I have also put art up there and enjoyed all the other art that I do not document. Tomb may not confess to actually owning this wall, because over the years it has become a wall of Free Speech for many artists, neighbors, and organizations. Some call it the Democracy Wall, but Tomb named it the (de)Appropriation Wall, especially since he resides in a former SF Police Department building. The building had a literally tortured past (Chicanos and Latinos were treated poorly by the mostly Irish police in the last century), and a bomb was placed at its back door during the violent era of radical factions in the Bay Area. Tomb decided to use the facade of this building as a force of freedom, more specifically of speech.
Tomb had a brief tussle with the City authorities over his free access to whomever wants to get up on this wall. When the City realized that it could potentially be a Constitutional matter, they backed down. The DAP wall shows up in my book "Stencil Nation" about half a dozen times. He has written about it in the book "Mission Muralismo," where it was featured. Before the book came out, some of the contributors had a show at ATA. I showed a slide presentation of Mission District stencils. Tomb showed the following video of the photographs he has taken over the years. I believe he stands in the same exact place about once a week and snaps a photo of the wall. Being a historian and documentor, I asked him to post this video for others to enjoy and analyze. For a reference of time, notice how the tree grows in front of the wall!
And for a better explanation of Tomb's concepts and ideas around the wall, go to his site: http://www.deappropriationproject.net/
The (de)Appropriation Project Archive will be participating in the Theoretical Archaeology Group Meeting held at the University of California Berkeley from May 6-8, 2011.
Resident archaeologist on the project, Phoebe France will present a paper for session 15: Graffiti and the Archaeology of the Contemporary.
This is an exciting chance to present the project in a new context, and to get feedback on the most recent iterations of the web resources and tools. Please join us!