In the Northernmost part of Greenpoint, just about as far up as you can go in Brooklyn without falling in Newtown Creek and drifting across the sludge-channel to Queens, there is an ever-changing graffiti mural on the corner of Clay and McGuinness, on the walls of the Power Brake Service shop. We’ve seen employees on site while artists are laying it down, and even saw an NYPD cruiser stop by for a short chat with a tagger before rolling along without so much as a finger-wagging, so we reckon the building owner either approves of the paint job, or at least isn’t bothered by it.
Parts of this mural are painted over regularly, as different artists and taggers carve out some territory for themselves on the bricks. Sometimes the changes are disappointing. We’ve seen really bold, fresh work painted over with half-assed dreck, and it’s a real shame. But more often than not, the new layers are impressive. Take this past week, when we noticed some new figures on the West side of the building:
The extra thin spray strokes look as though they came out of an oversized quill pen rather than a spray can. The figures’ skinny limbs, bulbous heads, and beady little facial features call to mind the kind of childrens-book-illustration-gone-weird style practiced by certain gallery artists like Neil Farber and Marcel Dzama. And upon closer inspection, we saw that the figure on the left has a shirt covered in sequins! Real, glued-on-by-hand purple sequins.
What street artist does that? This stuff looked familiar, but we couldn’t quite place it.
Then, this morning, we came upon a great video from ScribeMedia Arts and Culture (via Wooster Collective), which led us to the conclusion that these figures were added to the Power Brake mural by none other than Brazilian artist siblings Os Gemeos (“The Twins” in Portugese), who currently have a show entitled “Too Far Too Close” up at Deitch Projects :
We’re super curious to know how The Twins heard about this wall in the first place, and can’t help but wonder … if Power Brake attracted a couple of well-known international street artists, might it become a magnet spot for more Brooklyn artists like Swoon and Faile, whose work we’ve seen a little farther South in Williamsburg?