UPGRADE! NY: Grafitti Research Lab & Josh Macphee

Event Type: 
Event Type: 
Event Type: 
programming series
Start Date: 
27 Apr 2006
7:00 pm

Upgrade! NY
April 2006

Upgrade! Anniversary Brunch marked the seventh year in graffiti style,

with Evan Roth and James Powderly of the Graffiti Research Lab, and stencil artist Josh MacPhee.

Josh took us on a whirlwind tour through the history of illegal street markings (Street Art 101), with a focus on the history of the street stencil.

Evan and James talked about how the Graffiti Research Lab was formed. They demo’d the tools they’ve developed and gave out materials to make LED Throwies. Some of Evan’s students presented their projects and/or concepts based on the work of James and Evan. We concluded with a little Throwies experiment/happening.

James Powderly has a masters degree from NYU’s ITP program and comes to Eyebeam from Honeybee Robotics, where he has worked as a director of technology development, applications engineer, and lab foreman since 2002. At Honeybee, James developed technology for NASA’s mars rover that is currently on the surface of the red planet and engineered an installation for the Architects Diller + Scofidio that was shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art. James has previously worked at Eyebeam as an artist in residence, he is a partner in RobotClothes, and the co-founder of the Robotics Society of America New York City Chapter.

Evan Roth is a recent MFA graduate from the Design Technology department at Parsons where he was his class valedictorian. He is the creator of Graffiti Analysis (video), a project that uses motion tracking, computer vision technology, and a custom C++ application to record and analyze a graffiti writer’s pen movement over time. Evan’s media experiments also include Explicit Content Only, Postal Labels Against Bush, and Graffiti Taxonomy.

Josh MacPhee is an artist, curator and activist currently living in Troy, NY. His work often revolves around themes of radical politics, privatization and public space. He published his first book, Stencil Pirates: A Global Survey of Street Stenciling, in July 2004 on Soft Skull Press. He also organizes the Celebrate People’s History Poster Series and runs a small political art distribution website at www.justseeds.org. In addition, he regularly works with larger groups of artists to create giant collective interventionist art events such as the Department of Space and Land Reclamation and the Autonomous Territories of Chicago. He is currently working on editing two new books, one is a collection of open source radical political graphics and the other is about the intersection of art and anarchism.