LA-based artists Paul Ramirez and DJ Neff, founders of Canlove (A Graffiti Recycling Program) spent Mother’s day featuring their “Fresh Flower Cart” — a mobile artwork constructed from thousands of recently harvested, handcut spray can flora. And they did so not near the color-drenched walls of Venice Beach, but at a swank Bloomingdale’s in Santa Monica, California.
Just over a year old, Canlove operates out of their collective studio, Chalk LA, in Venice, California. Their mission: Leave no can behind. The team began removing discarded spray paint cans from heavily concentrated graffiti zones and upcycling them into colorful works of art.
Where does this fit into a high-end luxury department store setting? Paul Ramirez says:
“Bloomingdale’s chose us to support the Venice art walk and local artists. This store in particular, was exceptionally lively inside and the cart fit in quite well. We had all walks of Bloomie’s shoppers approaching us — younguns and matures. In certain context, the spray can has universal appeal. We’re just giving people another way to appreciate their beauty. It was wild to see patrons walk out with their iconic brown bags and our little spray flowers peeking over the edge. They paired each other nicely.”
‘No Can Left Behind’ will be the first large-scale installation by the artist collaborative. The exhibit is scheduled for June and will uncover the comprehensive process of graffiti itself — taking the tools that have enabled street art culture and allowing them to stand alone as new visual art. This show will run at 941 Geary/White Walls from June 16 – July 28.
(Photos: Julian Escobar)