Pacific dissent disregards consent
From bus-stop signs to freeway underpasses, it's evident that the city of Los Angeles is no longer safe from works that are taking the art world by storm. Street art has become an increasingly popular way for people to display artwork in a public setting, while taking the risk of "defacing" public property in the process. This new and improved type of graffiti is becoming increasinglymainstream, as artists and their work are becoming more widely accepted. What was once viewed solely as vandalism, has been given a breath of fresh air, as Los Angeles develops a new opinion on the matter as a whole.
Artists such as Banksy and Shepard Fairey, have become household names in an industry where privacy is key.
Banksy, a street artist from England renowned for his controversial images that seem to find their way onto buildings as if by magic, recently took part in the documentary, "Exit Through the Gift Shop", which shone a never before seen light on the subject and allowed the public an insiders view to the world of street art.
The American-born Shepard Fairey, became famous for his Andre the Giant Obey stickers, which led to his own OBEY company. Most recently, he created the Obama Hope poster, which will remain the legendary symbol of Obama's campaign.
Consequently, this type of art is dominating the landscape of Los Angeles, and it is no surprise that new artists want into the scene.
As a child, former Santa Monica College student Charlie White was immersed in a world of photography, art, and architecture. His dad, a photographer of the like, allowed his son a chance to continually view various works of art as they made their way in and out of his house.
"Most everyone he surrounded himself with was in some way connected to the art world, and so after many babbling lectures, from pretentious artists and self proclaimed art critics, my understanding of detail and simplicity grew, as did my respect for the creative form," says White.
His love of art developed into an urge to create it himself and prompted him to create his own works, using the city of Los Angeles as his canvas.
When his life began to revolve around "slapping stickers" onto every surface he could get his hands on, his friend Moss, who asked the Corsair not to use his real name, became interested as well and decided to join the bandwagon.
Together, they set out to cover the city in their signature stickers. White's trademark consists of an image of a man with a long beard that was developed from a photo of his dad's friend. Moss opted to use his image of a pig with a baby head, and it is clear that they both found great comfort in Photoshop.
"For the presiding year we made it a habit of going out ‘bombing,' so to speak, twice a week, and once we found how easy it was to steal large format copies from Kinko's, all heck broke loose," says White. Beyond the simple act of slapping stickers onto stop signs and easily accessible places, they began pushing the limits with their efforts made to get their pieces up.
It turned into a frenzy, as they started "running across freeways to glue up a five foot poster to the center divider, scaling gutters up buildings to get the billboard on top, and even edging off the peaks of buildings while one held the others ankles."
As their popularity grew, Moss and White decided to create the Pacific Dissent Company, which, as it says on their website, "is the product of a massive amount of ideas, coffee, and marijuana." They continue to create new pieces of art, and are taking part in various art shows in galleries throughout the city.
As this new counterculture continues to develop, it is evident that the art being created is intended for the greater good of society, rather than an improper form of expression.
"My favorite piece is the one happening right now- you're involved as well," says White. "The collective as a whole 'is' the art and its just as much ours as it is yours, or anyone else. My art is on this planet with everyone else and that being so, it is only a fraction of the framework that makes up the collective thought that forms what we call ‘art', which is the true favorite piece."