Owen Dippie is starting a modern renaissance in Brooklyn. Within the past couple of months, the New Zealand-born street artist has put up two pieces in Bushwick that skillfully remix the work of the Renaissance masters and contemporary art and culture. Dippie’s clever pieces appeal to art lovers of all styles.
For Dippie, creating these mashups is like paying homage to his idols. Growing up, Dippie’s biggest influences were Biggie Smalls, Tupac Shakur, Michael Jackson, Andy Warhol, Basquiat and Keith Haring. As he grew older and became more exposed to other artists, the Renaissance masters began to grow on him as well. With such varying influences, it makes sense for Dippie to have created these pieces.
See the stunning mashups here
Artist Al Diaz is often asked to speak at panel discussions about Jean-Michel Basquiat or to lend his expertise for new exhibits about the world-famous artist. But Diaz was just as much a part of the downtown street art movement as his buddy Basquiat; in fact, the two got involved with the art form together. They met in high school and created the tag SAMO©, which appeared throughout lower Manhattan between 1977 and 1979 and put them on the map. They were first-generation NYC subway graffiti artists, and Diaz later became a text-oriented street artist. Today, you’ll see his hand in the subway again with his WET PAINT series, which uses individually-cut-out letters to create “clever, surreal and sometimes poignant anagrams.”
We recently chatted with Al Diaz to get the inside scoop on street art history in New York City, what it was like to work with Basquiat, and how he and his art work are much more than a shadow of his famous friend.
Read the full interview here