Thought Catalog

Kid Zoom: This City Will Eat Me Alive

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Back in December, Australian-born artist Kid Zoom (aka Ian Strange) unveiled “This City Will Eat Me Alive,” a short-run exhibition put on by Opera Gallery in New York’s Meatpacking District. While Strange’s style knocks of the post-graffiti movement that’s transformed into a cottage industry over the last decade, where artists meld elements of street-level graffiti with high-minded fine art and cash in, his craftsmanship is what distinguishes him. In this video comp, which collects behind-the-scenes footage and gallery shots from May 2010 through January 2011, we’re given a glimpse inside the surrealist world Strange has built.

Interestingly, Strange came up in the small Australian city of Perth (a Petri dish of visual talent, see The Yok et al.), which may explain the blue-collar, I-don’t-give-a-fuck nature of his work. It’s all metalheads and bogans down there, which isn’t necessarily a detriment. And according to an interview Strange did with Morgan Spurlock last year, parents in Perth (at least his) have a tendency to be more supportive of the arts:

My parents were great, laid back people who always told me to do what I love – and I loved painting on walls, which when you’re 15 doesn’t really seem like anything with a future, especially when you start getting dropped home by the police. Before I could drive my mother used to drive me to walls I’d painted the night before to get photos – I can’t imagine where I’d be if I had more traditional parents.

Art as escapism from a country that used to be a giant penal colony. Imagine that. TC mark

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  • NormanLake

    Detroit needs Kid Zoom. The city needs a makeover.

  • Michael Koh

    this is pretty cool. i'd like to see this in buffalo

  • Julian Tully Alexander

    I like his work, but I also feel like graffiti is a subversive act and this diminishes that idea. I know he isn't the first person to do this, and there are a shitload of others who do very similar shit. The whole “post graffiti movement” kind of makes me angry. On another note good for him though. A lot of people are talking about this, and I like his style a lot.

  • November_fire

    That’s funny since America was also a penal colony and Australia currently has a much lower crime rate than the USA. Anyway Kid Zoom’s art is very good.

  • Frank Zweegers

    Great example of how such a ‘teaser’ video should be like. Really made me interested about the exhibition.

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