Artist Posts Larger Than Life Photos of Tupac, Snoop Dogg Around NYC
Starting in August, massive images by renowned photographer Chi Modu began to appear on the exterior walls of select Manhattan and Brooklyn buildings as part of an ongoing billboard installation called Uncategorized .
Modu, best known for his iconic photos of major hip hop artists, was searching for a way to make his art accessible to more people. "The art world tends to be very exclusive and full of obstacles for both the artists and the public," he said. "My goal is to make art more inclusive by pulling an end run on the galleries and the museums, breaking down the barriers and bringing the art directly to the people. Like graffiti, but legal."
The first three images went up in early August included:
• Tupac Shakur -- a rarely-seen 9' x 12' image, on Thompson St. at Grand in Soho
• Snoop Dogg -- a never-before released 16' x 22' photo from 1993 of the 21-year old rapper, on Broadway at Hewes, Brooklyn.
• School Kids -- a riveting 16' x 25' photo of young school boys in the back of a church in Modu's native Nigeria, on 6th Ave at Spring St, Soho
With word spreading about the iconic billboard images around New York City, press has taken note and the excitement is apparent. Locations will expand over time to other parts of New York City and other cities. This initial phase of Uncategorized is being done in partnership with Prince Media Company, New York.
As to why Modu decided to name the exhibit Uncategorized: "People always want to put art and artists into neat little boxes. My work does not fit into any one stereotype and neither do I. I wanted to create something that is the opposite of putting labels on everything and make a statement against stereotyping in general. I don't see this as just an exhibit. I want to start a movement."