The Blue Light Project

V-TARP: The Vancouver Transit Adspace Reappropriation Project

So Banksy declares street art dead and apparently nobody was listening. JermIX certainly wasn't. Working with UK import Vegas - a stencil artist of remarkable skill - Jerm has launched what many consider his most aggressive campaign ever. VTARP, it's called. Vancouver Transit Adspace Reappropriation Project. Which sounds like a black line item in the DND budget. But which is actually a guerilla program involving dozens of artists who are putting up art on public transit vehicles in empty ad space.

That's right. The white space between McDonalds and VanCity ads is being filled with art. And Translink is greatly annoyed, although also a bit impressed judging from their very formal, though very cordial letter sent to the two organizing artists.

Posted: Thursday, Jun. 3, 2010 1:01pm

Rabbit Receiving his own Information

On a gig for Western Living Magazine, I toured the Willamette Valley recently. Lots of gems to discover there, like Whole Hog Wednesdays at the Dundee Bistro. And of course several hundred small, high-craft wineries that produce the amazing fruity, farmy pinot noirs of the region.

But I particularly enjoyed "meeting" the mascot of the Scott Paul Winery. He's a rabbit. And the painting of him, which Scott Paul used to inspire the rabbit on their label, is by Oregon artist Cody Bustamante. The painting is called "Rabbit Receiving his own Information", and it shows the animal with his head cocked to the sky, as if listening to a timely bit of advice.

The story behind the painting is a good one.

Posted: Monday, May. 31, 2010 11:58am

New Cameraman: The Coin of the Realm

Brilliant street artist Byron Cameraman hits "Granville Rise" again. What I love about this piece is it's power to demonstrate just how beautiful filthy lucre can appear. If we did not find it beautiful - that is, if we didn't exalt money aesthetically and otherwise - you could argue, "Granville Rise" itself would not exist.

Up close, the hugely magnified silver dollar reveals all its nicks and scratches, evidence of the thousands of hands and lives through which it has passed. An asset, a debt, a store of value. Emblem of plans well made or evidence of what is always is short supply. Pleasure and hardship. This is the coin of the realm indeed.

Posted outside the Equinox Gallery, which shows Fred Herzog's wonderful photography, Cameraman's new work is striking, rich and underappreciated. I love this work and the city is lucky to have it. I also acknowledge a huge debt to Camerman, who inspired many ideas in my writing of The Blue Light Project.

More pictures after the jump.

Posted: Tuesday, May. 25, 2010 10:07am

Notebooks: The Blue Light Project - A01

A01 is one of the artists I followed around during the writing of my new novel The Blue Light Project. His work impressed me hugely in a number of different ways. The first and most obvious way related simply to how prolific he was. The photo above is from a series called Local Photo Posters. At the time I met him, he estimated he'd put up 200 of these in Vancouver and was plannng 300 more. He has since done a similar series in Toronto, although I don't have pictures of any of those.

Some of these photos are from A01's website, by the way, which you should check out. He's an artist of super-charged intensity and complex idea.

Posted: Friday, Mar. 19, 2010 8:59am

Notebooks: The Blue Light Project - Take5

Take5 was one of the first street artists I became aware of, during the writing and researching of The Blue Light Project. He was doing a serie of these beautiful chief's head posters and stencils in the neighborhood around my office.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There were many more than the map shows, but this reflects my dawning awareness that right in the streets around my building, there was this artistic project going on.

Posted: Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2010 9:36am

Candahar Photo Show: 22 Feb 2010

I'll be reading at the Candahar, 22 Feb. I'm presenting photographs of "wall art" by the local street artists who inspired me during the writing of my upcoming novel The Blue Light Project.

The show starts at 7 with a reading by poet Gregory Betts. I'm on around 8:30. Stay after my presentation for a screening of Murray Siple's film "Carts of Darkness", about the shopping cart races that happen on Mountain Highway in North Vancouver.

A creation of Theo Sims, the Candahar is a working Belfast pub that unfolds out of a shipping container, complete with two Belfast barkeeps who may or may not travel in the container.

Playwrights Theatre Centre at 1398 Cartwright Street, Granville Island.

Posted: Monday, Feb. 8, 2010 9:04am

Notebooks: The Blue Light Project - JermIX

JermIX is one of the artists that inspired me during the writing of my new novel, The Blue Light Project. It's possible to know about JermIX (aka Jerm, aka Jerm9ine) and not even realize you know about him. That's because he is one of the most prolific and dedicated street artists I've encountered. I'll be posting lots more about him and other street artists over the next months, but for now, just check out this image.

Posted: Monday, Dec. 21, 2009 12:26pm

Soft Skull signs The Blue Light Project

The Blue Light Project will be published simultaneously in Canada and the US by Knopf Canada and the brilliant, edgy American independent Soft Skull.

Trade announcement:

Timothy Taylor’s Blue Light Project, a literary thriller that uses a
four-day hostage siege in the not-too-distant future, during which a
city unravels and three disparate lives intersect, to explore if art
still has the power to transcend, even in the face of our
interconnected world, to Denise Oswald at Soft Skull, by Gillian
MacKenzie of the Gillian MacKenzie Agency  (US).

 

 

Posted: Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2009 2:28pm

Street art by Byron Cameraman and Rich S

 

 The streets and walls of Vancouver's downtown eastside have effectively been my notebooks during the writing of The Blue Light Project, my new novel coming out next year with Knopf Canada and Soft Skull in the US. I'll post pictures of various artists here. But if there were a single image that started the book going, it was this one. I watched Byron Cameraman and Rich S put up this poster in January of last year.

Posted: Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2009 2:04pm
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