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Thanks so much - Russell

A Journey to the Oldest Cave Paintings in the World

A Journey to the Oldest Cave Paintings in the World
The discovery in a remote part of Indonesia has scholars rethinking the origins of art—and of humanity
By Jo Marchant
The Smithsonian Magazine, January 2016

I struggle to keep my footing on a narrow ridge of earth snaking between flooded fields of rice. The stalks, almost ready to harvest, ripple in the breeze, giving the valley the appearance of a shimmering green sea. In the distance, steep limestone hills rise from the ground, perhaps 400 feet tall, the remains of an ancient coral reef. Rivers have eroded the landscape over millions of years, leaving behind a flat plain interrupted by these bizarre towers, called karsts, which are full of holes, channels and interconnecting caves carved by water seeping through the rock.

We’re on the island of Sulawesi, in Indonesia, an hour’s drive north of the bustling port of Makassar. We approach the nearest karst undeterred by a group of large black macaques that screech at us from trees high on the cliff and climb a bamboo ladder through ferns to a cave called Leang Timpuseng. Inside, the usual sounds of everyday life here—cows, roosters, passing motorbikes—are barely audible through the insistent chirping of insects and birds. The cave is cramped and awkward, and rocks crowd into the space, giving the feeling that it might close up at any moment. But its modest appearance can’t diminish my excitement: I know this place is host to something magical, something I’ve traveled nearly 8,000 miles to see.

Scattered on the walls are stencils, human hands outlined against a background of red paint. Though faded, they are stark and evocative, a thrilling message from the distant past. My companion, Maxime Aubert, directs me to a narrow semicircular alcove, like the apse of a cathedral, and I crane my neck to a spot near the ceiling a few feet above my head. Just visible on darkened grayish rock is a seemingly abstract pattern of red lines.

VOX Tracks Kilroy Across WWII War Zones (Video)

We know about the epic drama of World War II, but what about the jokes? The above video tells the story (as best as we can). The iconic piece of graffiti that was known, in America, as "Kilroy Was Here" traveled the world in a fashion remarkably similar to a modern meme.

Theorem Art in Williamsburg, VA

Colonial Williamsburg presents theorem art at Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum
By HOLLY PRESTIDGE Richmond Times-Dispatch | Posted: Saturday, December 5, 2015 10:30 pm

“Theorem work,” a popular method of watercolor stencil painting on fabric, wood and paper, was used to decorate everyday objects and create decorative pictures in the 19th century.

An exhibit highlighting the artwork, which was popular as a skill for women, is on display in Colonial Williamsburg.

“Folk art enthusiasts have long associated the art of stencil with 19th-century collections, and we’re excited to share this important and vibrant form of American art with the public,” Laura Pass Barry, Colonial Williamsburg’s Juli Grainger curator of paintings, drawings and sculpture and manager for curatorial outreach, said in a release. “This exhibit will not only depict a variety of theorem compositions and subjects, but it will also show the period process which artists, schoolgirls, and everyday men and women followed to create these colorful creations making them today one of the country’s most recognized and celebrated folk art traditions.”

New Dec. Photo Upload on Stencil Archive

The TARDIS gets a stencil. More surprises in store for today's Stencil Archive uploads. Music support by WRAS, WREK, and KTRU. Rainy December day in San Francisco. Enjoy things indoors with more stencils.....

Mexico (thanks, Larry)
(thanks, Jef)

In Media (Doctor Who)

East Bay, California
Los Angeles (just one)
North Cal (just one; thanks, Josiah and Celeste)
NYC (just one)

>NEW< wrdsmth (LA, CA)
Kate DeCiccio
>NEW< Sash
>NEW< Solis


15 Nov: Stencil Archive Presenting at Howard Zinn Book Fair

Have any plans Sunday, November 15? Come out to the Howard Zinn Book Fair and hear me give a 15 minute presentation on stencils and street art.

The presentation will be 1:45 in the Grace Lee Boggs room.

City College of SF Mission Campus
1125 Valencia St.

My presentation will support an hour long program by authors Rachel Cassandra and Lauren Gucik, who are releasing their book Women Street Artists of Latin America: Art Without Fear/ Grafiteras y Muralistas en América Latina: Arte Sin Miedo through my publisher Manic D Press.

This book shines light on female art and voices in the lesser explored Latin American street art scenes. I frequently hear people stereotype street artists as always male (and usually a person of color in a gang), so appreciate that Cassandra and Gucik are releasing a book that will help erase assumptions about who makes the art on the streets. As a bonus, some of the artists featured in this new book cut and paint stencils.

Women Street Artists of Latin America: Art Without Fear is a book about Latin American women creating visual art in public spaces. It includes interviews, portraits of the artists, and photographs of their work.

Site Down Overnight

If you tried to visit the Stencil Archive last night, you probably saw an error page. We aren't sure what happened and it appears to be all good and up again. Apologies if this interrupted your stencil enjoyment in any way. As always, this project is a bootstrap, grassroots one. Any support goes straight to the admin and upkeep of the Stencil Archive. Profit of any kind is hilarious in this age of hypercapitalism. As a great street artist once said, "art should be free to the public and not inside a stuffy old building."

New Photos on Stencil Archive

Three-day weekend and nothing to do? Time to click through some stencil pics!

Music by WRAS and KTRU ::: Efficient split-screen by El Capitan ::: Thanks for the submissions: Celeste, Josiah, Amanda, Paul, Terri)


Blek in NYC (thanks, Paul Delano)
C215 in San Francisco and Istanbul (thanks, Amanda)
>NEW< AINAC (Art is not a Crime)
Classic Borf
Fekner in the Bronx
Logan Hicks in San Francisco
Eclair in San Francisco
fnnch in San Francisco
>NEW< Down n’ dirty with JR in Upper Haight



The Mission (thans, Terri)
Haight Street
A few on Divis
One at Caltrain station
SoMa (with big, bad Bluewolf advertisement)
Two on Geary St.
One in the TL

VVVV more pic links after the break VVVV


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