…was the initial thought that came to mind when I opened up the digital sketchbook of Italian artist, Blu. Combining psychedelic drawings from an unknown region of his brain, literal concepts, and graffiti like no other, Blu is truly a master of his craft.
With a deliberately concealed identity, little is known of Blu, other than he lives in Bologna, Italy and has been an active street artist since the late 90’s. Initially starting with spray paint, Blu received his recognition from illicit graffiti painted in the historical center and suburbs of Bologna.
Fast forward a few years to 2001, Blu’s true character shined through with the combination of house paint and rollers mounted at the top of telescope sticks. Sarcastic, dramatic and comical, his murals became visual vocabulary for the streets.
International collaborations with artists from Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Honduras, landed Blu a spot in Managua, Nicaragua’s “Murales de Octubre.” festival (2005). Blu painted a mural upon a wall that in 1979, Victor CanifrË˜ celebrated the Sandinista revolution. This would be one of his most ‘fixed’ murals, which was immediately labeled Hombre Banano (Banana Man) by the locals, in reference to the protest of the workers on the banana plantations.
From 2006-2007, Blu returned to Central and South America for a long stint of murals, extending from Mexico City, Guatemala City, Managua, San Jose and Buenos Aires. Finally residing in Buenos Aires from Fall 2007 to Spring of 2008, Blu would devote his time and creative efforts into his video called “Muto”, which has been seen by over 8 million viewers and awarded international recognition.
Big Bang Boom
Blu has also found himself in London, Spain, Germany, Eastern Europe and Italy, where he would paint controversial murals that illuminated the streets of major cities and suburbs. Only traveling to North America twice, Blu accepted an invitation from the Deitch Gallery in New York where he would paint the exterior of their Long Island location.
I have to say, as impressive as his long standing resume is, to which I could go on forever, what really attracted me to Blu the most, was his ability to take conceptual thoughts and issues of our society and bring them to life. His animations are so emotionally striking, I couldn’t help but smile ear to ear. The time and detail for such art is incredible. Thus bringing me back to the pages of my childhood books, where I’d sit in my school library, reading “The Giving Tree”, over and over again.
Animating my mind to live in the pages of these illustrations, Blu makes my kaleidoscope mind wander.
BY: LINDSAY PERRY
THANK YOU BLUBLU