“I paint on civilization - It’s environmentally wack - So presenting my attack - I’ll brighten up your shack - I’m down by law - That’s a fact - Just give me a wall - Any building dull or tall “ -The Clash “Overpowered by Funk”
When graffiti artist Futura guest-rapped on that Clash song in 1981, he was still illegally painting subway cars in NYC. Now he is both an internationally known gallery artist and graphic designer. He joins an impressive and legal crew of both new and old school street artists on the Coney Art Walls, an outdoor street art project created during the summer of 2015. Coney Art Walls is the creation of street-art curator and author Jeffrey Deitch and real estate developer Joseph J. Sitt. The pair wanted to expose New York City and the world to some of the newer up-and-coming artists as well as paying respect to some older masters, all while helping to revitalize Coney Island. The 50,000 square foot site had been a vacant lot nestled amongst the many rides and attractions of Coney Island. Now viewers can take in the art, snap a selfie, and chow down on some street food while the screams of Thunderbolt riders echo around them.
The 34 artists came together from all over the world to paint their murals - London, Belgium, Spain, Brazil, France, Tunisia as well as American artists from LA, Miami and of course, graffiti capital of the world - New York City. While most of the works are traditional spray paint murals there are also unusual takes on street art like Lauren Halsey’s “untitled” which looks like a wall of aluminum foil with etchings of NY locals and the enormous plywood boombox by Skewville.
The original 34 artists represented are: Aiko (and Aiko Community Wall), assume vivid astro focus, Buff Monster, Charlie Doves, Crash, Daze (and Daze Community Wall), Eine, eL Seed, Futura, Greg Lamarche, How & Nosm, IRAK Crew, Jane Dickson, Jason Woodside, Jesse Edwards, Kashink, KATSU, Kaves, Kenny Scharf, Lady Pink, Lauren Halsey, Marie Roberts, Maya Hayuk, Miss Van, Mister Cartoon, RETNA, ROA, Ron English, Shepard Fairey, Sheryo & The Yok, Skewville and, Tatyana Fazlalizadeh. As of 2016 some of these artists work are gone and 20 new murals have taken their place.
Know Before You Go
Take the D, F, N, or Q trains to Coney Island / Stillwell Ave.Coney Art Walls are open seven days a week during the summer with multiple artisanal food vendors and various live music events on the weekends. It’s free to be in the space whether you eat there or not. Please be advised you can no longer bring outside food and beverages into the mural area. They now have security checking all bags at every entrance. Check their website for updated information on visiting hours especially during the colder months.