#ArtThursdays: BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON @ Saatchi Gallery
17th February - 9th May 2023
For this week's #ArtThursday we had a look at the BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON exhibition during it's opening week at the Saatchi Gallery.
Following the success of exhibitions in Los Angeles & New York, BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON has made it's way to Chelsea, London. It has been one of the most highly anticipated exhibitions to visit the UK since the announcement last year.
Being that this is the most comprehensive street art exhibition to ever open in the uk to date, it highlights over 100 artists across 3 floors. This is the first time in 8 years that an exhibition of this scale has taken over the entirety of the gallery.
Room 2 of the BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON exhibition, 2023
Upon entry of the exhibition, visitors are welcomed into the space by staff who are kitted out in Adidas tracksuits. Branding on point from the get-go by the headline sponsors.
The introduction to the first room was a life size installation of Trash Records, an interactive reconstruction of the independent record shop. Everything was decked out to perfection with graphic tees, skateboards and retro flyers decorating the ceiling and walls, not to mention an endless amount of vinyl records. Crates on crates of tunes from yesteryear that could be flicked through and played on the working vinyl player! This immersive realism is very nostalgic to any music lover who experienced visiting record shops as a hang out spot after school in their youth.
Haute Clawture, Left: Bootleg LL Cool J sweatshirt, custom airbrush stonewashed overalls, and fat lace wig as a nod to the difficulty of obtaining fat laces in the UK in the late 1980's. Right: Adidas track sweat top with sweatpants commemorating Jamaica's influence on style and culture in the UK
Curated by graffiti historian and collector, Roger Gastman, BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON delves into the self expression explored by the artists through their individual eyes. Taken aback by the scale of some of the artworks on display, we are more than certain that the artists were adding to their submissions during the installation process. Canvases that lined up, create an illusion with extra paint that exploded onto Saatchi’s white walls. There's a fear that these artworks will never been seen complete again once the exhibition comes to a close in May…
Gordon Matta-Clark, Various Exhibition Prints, Photos from 1973
This exhibition was made up of 13 rooms that each held a different chapter along the journey of graffiti, music and fashion. Each artefact, significant in some way along the street art timeline. The works exhibited consisted of an assortment of interactive installations, great sculptures and awesome art work from past and present.
André Saraiva, Various Mr A artworks
The Beastie Boys section featuring memorabilia and custom Adidas tracksuits for each member
Some noteworthy subject highlights in the show include the birth of punk; hip-hop that is coincidentally marking its 50th anniversary in 2023; and street culture’s strong influence in fashion and film.
POSE, DOLL, Acrylic on canvas, 2021
A lot of new work was created specifically for this exhibition too by some of today's most renowned street artists. Roger Gastman has been quoted confirming this:
"We're not reclaiming pieces from the streets - 85% of the works here have been made specifically for this show." - Roger Gastman
Kenny Scharf, Closet #42 Bestest Ever
Kenny Scharf's "Closet #42 Bestest Ever" could be considered one of the most stimulating installations throughout the show. Unveiled through a black curtain, the viewer is exposed into a UV paradise. What could be considered waste from the past has been transformed into a utopia of outgrown plastics; such as toddlers toys and unused garden furniture.
Various ephemera of Keith Haring, collection of Roger Gastman
Keith Haring of course, had an honourable mention due to his influence of street art in New York in the 1980's. The recognisable line drawings were showcased on paper and in niche merchandise in multiple glass cases throughout the exhibition.
Huskmitnavn, All works acrylic paint on acid-fee paper, some with hand-cuts and painted frames, 2021-2023
BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON had more than enough photo opportunities where you could become part of the artwork itself. The penultimate room had plenty of nooks that offers a memento of the time spent at the exhibition and a colourful reminder of the visit.
C.R. Stecyk III, LONDINIUM, Site-specific poster installation, 2023
After 3 hours of taking everything in and the lights in every room shutting down after we finished viewing the art like we were in the opposite of MJ's Billy Jean music video, it was time to make a move. Seeing this exhibition is just a happy reminder that even though some members of the community still consider it illegal, street art is thriving now more than ever. Street artists are more visible then ever and we hope this exhibition can set the fire alight within the next generation of up and coming artists and people who never even considered it until coming to the exhibition.
This is not one to do in a rush or over a lunch break, but if you are a fan of graffiti, street art and it's influence in today's culture then make sure you go and check BEYOND THE STREETS LONDON before May 9th!
Duke of York's HQ, King's Road, London, SW3 4RY
Opening hours: Monday-Sunday: 10am-6pm, last entry: 5:30pm.
Curated & Founded by: Roger Gastman
Curation: Kim Stephens, Evan Pricco & Raoul Shah
Historical Research & Curation: Caleb Neelon, Caroline Ryder, Toby Mott, Andrew Hayes, Rob Fever, Claudia Gold, Sean Corcoran
@stookijewellery Be sure to check out the cöölest graffiti & street art exhibition in London... 👀BEYOND THE STREETS 💥 has arrived in the UK @Saatchi Gallery . Over 150 artists, rare art, collectables, installations & söö much more! Check out our full Art Thursdays Blög Störy 💙 Let us know in the comments which exhibition we should head to next!.. • • • #beyondthestreets #artexhibitsinlondon #fyp #fypシ #foryoupage #art #streetart #graffiti #thingstodoinlondon #explorelondon #discoverlondon #london #thingstodoinlondon #londonhiddengems #londonhotspots #londontravel ♬ original sound - 💎Stööki Jewellery💎