AO Onsite – New York: Friday, June 24th, 2011 – Kenny Scharf's 'The Gates Project' and Cosmic Cavern Party

June 26th, 2011

Rickshaw-style pedicabs parked on Orchard street. All photos by L. Streeter for Art Observed

In his latest endeavor, maverick graffiti artist Kenny Scharf has launched a project entitled “The Gates Project” produced in part by Anonymous Gallery.  In the project Scharf will paint roughly 100 roll-down storefront gates focused in the burgeoning Lower East Side.  Boldy painting in the middle of daylight, Scharf has already completed murals at 2 Delancey street, 132 Orchard street and most recently, a massive mural stretching for blocks on the Bowery. Scharf is teaming up with Anonymous Gallery for the project, and getting permits for each of the spaces he paints on. Art Observed was lucky enough to have the chance to take a pedi-cab tour of the lower east side visiting each location of Scarf’s work, led by Anonymous director Joseph Ian Henrikson.

Kenny Scharf and friend at his Cosmic Cavern a Go Go

More text and images after the jump…

Kenny Scharf, known for his distinctive cartoon-ish style and unconventional public art, began creating street art in New York in the late 1970’s after moving from LA to the East Village. He immediately fell in with the ranks of artists like Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat. After receiving his degree from SVA in 1980 and being selected for the Whitney Biennial in 1985, he gained wide-spread popularity. Heavily influenced by science fiction and the cartoons he saw growing up as a child, he created characters that mimicked pop culture before such a term even existed.

Joseph Henrikson presents a work at 132 Orchard Street.

136 Orchard street

160 Orchard Street

During the tour, guests were handed Montana spray cans and told to spray a gate directly across the street from one of Scharf’s works. Anonymous founder and director Joseph Ian Henrikson hopes to create more interactive-based experiences with the gates this summer, and has even posted each of the locations on the Anonymous Gallery website.

One of Kenny’s re-occurring characters on 63 orchard Street.

114 Forsyth Street

A huge mural stretching across multiple gates at 183 Delancy Street (corner of Bowery)

In a recent interview with Art on Air Radio, Kenny Scharf explanis how the now-infamous “Cosmic Cavern” parties got their start in the 80’s. Scharf was living with Keith Haring in a walk-up in Times Square. After clearing out a closet in the apartment, he found various black-lights and decided to create a cosmic “enviroment” inside the closet.  His party on Friday took place beneath his studio in Brooklyn for the first time in more than a year, in a basement filled with all sorts of neon and day-glo covered found objects and trash.


Kenny Scarf and friend

-L. Streeter

Related Links]

Anonymous Gallery [Exhibition page]
Kenny Scharf: The Gates Project [Art on Air]
Kenny Scharf Painting 100 Lower East Side Gates [Bowery Boogie]

NUT BUTTER GRANOLA BARS here homemade granola bars

Chicago Sun-Times February 16, 2011 MAKES ABOUT 24 (3-BY-11/2-INCH) BARS 1 cup nut butter (peanut, almond, sunflower, whatever you like) ?? cup honey 1 teaspoon vanilla ?? teaspoon cinnamon Pinch salt 1 egg, plus 1 egg white 2 cups oat granola 1 cup whole wheat flour ?? cup coarsely chopped nuts ?? cup dried cherries Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a 9-by-13-inch pan with foil. Grease foil lightly.

In large bowl, whisk together nut butter, honey, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Add egg and egg white and whisk to mix completely.

In another bowl, combine granola, flour, nuts and fruit. Combine two mixtures and spread into prepared pan, smoothing top. Bake about 30 minutes; do not overbake. homemade granola bars

Cool 10 minutes, then peel off foil before cutting into 24 bars. Store bars, tightly wrapped, for up to 1 week.

Chicago?ˆ™s Downtown Farmstand Nutrition facts per bar: 150 calories, 8 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 9 mg cholesterol, 18 g carbohydrates, 10 g sugars, 5 g protein, 74 mg sodium, 2 g fiber The upside to homemade granola bars: They can be customized and are usually healthier than store-bought. | keith hale~sun-times photos Fact Box: F