….wild is the wind…creative freedom is the seed….
#NL2B 2013: Statement from the Artists “Kel1st and Yu”
“Nothing Left to Burn” (#tag NL2B) is the title of our annual artists-led cultural weekend at the beautiful “Bombed out” Cathedral (St.Lukes) in Liverpool, England. Many world famous artists performed there for the pure pleasure of exercising their creative freedoms.
On 3rd-4th August 2013, Kel1st and Yu presented NL2B. As our multi-media light installation projected onto the ancient stone walls inside the crypt, the air was charged with a sense of “art history in the making”. We wondered if Steven Severin ( Siouxsie and the Banshees), who also performed in the crypt a few months ago, shared our sense of awe?
Liverpool has a rich musical tradition. New talents played at NL2B. Sonic poets rapped. USL (Urban Strawberry Lunch) hosted NL2B. We celebrated artistic integrity. Come rain or shine, but especially during stormy weather, Liverpool’s music touched the World!
NL2B began in 2012. In London, King Robbo invited us to a massive “old school” party/exhibition. Global elite Style-writers flew in. When Kel1st and Cecilia met, instead of greeting, we jumped into a surreal exchange about possible “wine’n’cheese” for Banksy’s official biographer, who waited patiently for a VIP Art talk. NL2B 2013 showed “glimpses” of our cutting –edge artistic exchanges as we gave “a quiet nod” posthumously to the works of Pasha P183 from Moscow.
Kel1st’s trains were the centre-pieces of Subway Art (book) and were featured in the “viral” Style Wars film (documentary). His legendary skill, style and influence uplifted many rising stars of New York City’s aerosol culture. He became a Graffiti Wild Style Master and a New York Creative Legend. His work was acquired for permanent collection by the Brooklyn Museum of Art. As an award winning Art Director with clients (which included Madonna, Mariah Carey & The Wall Street Journal), Kel1st successfully led teams of fresh talents in publishing and commercial designs. He is a pioneer who brought technology and culture to the inner city’s under-served population like the legend of Robin Hood who served the poor in England.
Cecilia inherited “the eye” from the Shaolin and Tai chi masters in Hong Kong who created world changing cinemas. She exhibited worldwide, starting as an award-winning teenage visual artist, growing up in Melbourne, Australia. In December 2012, she joined a prestigious list, beginning with Guiseppe Verdi’s costume designer for Aida, by exhibiting at the Christmas Show of El Hanager (National Opera House) in Cairo, Egypt. Her art has been touring Japan nationally since 2010. She curated for the 2008 Global Pre-Olympics Cultural Program titled “China Now! The best of Modern China”. Cecilia made her solo artistic debut at the official Edinburgh International Art Festival. Her first graffiti-fine art experiment was featured as protest art in Klimaforum’09 (People’s Climate Sumit ) during UNFCC COP 15 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Yu: “When asked about what high culture should think of Graffiti, I say “Give it Love!”. If honored, there will be an enduring culture like Traditional Chinese which are stylised pictograms, encrypting the history of Humanity. What is there to be judgemental about? It is an effortless evolution. Go back to Pre-historic paintings, Sumarians, Egyptian hierogylphs, Chinese, Sanskrits, Arabic, Hebrew, Runes, Cyrillics, Indo-European alphabets and even Dot Matrix fonts. Know your heritage! Whenever possible, try to learn from ancient and modern pioneers with humility, and failing that, see their works in a properly curated Museum!”
Kel1st: “Calligraphy is an art form that has my attention since childhood, hence my reason for entering the graffiti game. There’s a whole world of it that is there for me to learn from. It needs to be preserved and passed on. Graffiti has a global attention span and it would make for an easy entry to introduce calligraphy to new audiences and make the Ancient Arts even more influential towards future generations. People should be educated about this topic within an Academy setting.”
Inspired by Cecilia’s mentor Ms. Eva Monley (UK Producers Guild), NL2B screens an “Eva project” annually. NL2B 2012 showed “The African Queen” at our Open-air Cinema. NL2B 2013 exhibited image from Grandmaster Shek Kin (Enter the Dragon) (an image taken with Master Bruce Lee in his private collection). We thank the charities who generated images to Free Shi Tao, Liu Xiaobo and Bradley Manning . We admired the images of Protest by renowned Photo-journalists. “If you want peace then send Arts, Culture and Education! Send Opportunities!” was the vital message from the Cultural Director of YALA (Youth Leaders for Peace, Middle-east), Ms. Sharon Stone.
Kel1st and Yu express our sadness for the suicide of the talented young lady who DJ-ed at NL2B. RIP Clare. Our message to young talents:
“Art is a love that seeks only to realise itself. Be patient and let your artistic talents take you to places beyond your current imaginations!”
Our gratitude to our friends:
Urban Strawberry Lunch
All the crew of King Robbo (London. UK)
Simone Ditadi (Istituto Statale D’Arte “Pietro Selvatico” in Padua, Italy)
Decima Francis (From Boyhood to Manhood Charity, UK)
Shy147, Cos207, Mare139, Crash1, Van2 (USA)
Zi lan Liao and the Pagoda (Liverpool, UK)
A.J Rammel (MBA, Unis) & PURE cdc (UK)
All the resident artists at Patriothall Art Gallery (Edinburgh, Scotland)
Jane Kagon (Executive Director of RFK-LA Digital Media Lab and Archives, USA)
Everyone from the Egyptian Artists Guild in Cairo