graffitiweek: black/white

pairMore often than not, when I see graffiti of any kind it stops me in my tracks. I love analyzing it and thinking about the steps that were taken for it to be in front of me at that moment. I have so much love and respect for the talent that it takes to spray paint letterforms out in the wild. That being said, there is something about stenciled art that speaks to me. I think it’s just the raw graphic quality of the simple contrast of black and white. One of my favorite graphic designers is Massin for this very reason. If you aren’t familiar with his work, make sure you are sitting down and then please scroll down this page. It’s amazing how much expression and emotion is conveyed using just black and white. Every time I see his work I get chills. For real.
The two pictures in today’s post literally stopped me dead in my tracks. The portrait of Martin Luther King, Jr. is on the side of an abandoned gas station in San Antonio. I love how simple this image is and yet, so powerful. The stark yellow background seems to make him just pop off the building.

Here’s a detailed shot:1When I was in New Haven for my AIGA speaking engagement a few months ago I made it a point to walk around the Yale campus the morning after my talk in an effort to absorb as many brain cells as possible (I don’t think it worked). I wanted to visit the Yale School of Art but was bummed that the building was locked. So, I walked around to the back of the building hoping that I could find a door propped open but instead, I found Anne Frank. After I said holy shit a few times, I fumbled for my camera and snapped this picture. I don’t think black and white ever looked so beautiful together. I think MLK would be proud.

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