The B-Side Artists at City Arts Factory in Downtown Orlando, Florida

by Josh Garrick / Jun 23, 2012 /
Josh Garrick's picture

As a writer, I love the irony of the title the B-Side Artists gave to the exhibit that virtually took over the City Arts Factory on Friday evening with crowds so thick this ‘secret judge’ had to walk sideways just to get down the hall.  The whole exhibit was called “The B-Side Artists Sell Out” and while ALL ARTISTS LOVE crowds, these ‘street artists’ did the opposite of SELLING OUT by moving INSIDE the City Arts Factory and thereby clearing the streets where they used to be found on countless 3rd Thursdays over the past several years. 

 

The B-Side Artists presented an exhibit any gallery or museum would be proud to present WITHIN their highly structured and hurricane-proof walls.

 

B-Side Artists

 

 

The B-Side Artists may have grown up on the sidewalk, but this ‘extended family’ of street artists has showered, dressed, and walked inside the City Arts Factory and in so doing, has earned the right to drop the street from their description and – from this moment forward – these inventive, thoughtful, talented – and ever-more-sophisticated ARTISTS – are simply ARTISTS – first and last. 

 

B-Side Artists

 

B-Side Artists

 

 

They cleverly carried the theme into how they dressed with most of this Dickensian family showing up for their big night dressed in business suits and ties. Over the past several years I’ve watched these ARTISTS grow up before my eyes, have added pieces to my collection (from the street), and cried with them when one of their founding members was shot to death at the beginning of the Holiday season in 2009. Those paternal eyes of mine got misty on more than one occasion this evening as I watched Trez, Tobar, and Swam pull off one of the largest and most exemplary exhibits IN ALL OF CENTRAL FLORIDA over the past year. 

 

happy Trez Harris

Trez

 

keyboard

 

 

I won’t attempt to describe the familial associations among these ARTISTS, but I do know that Swam, Tobar and Trez are looked up to by the virtual flock of younger ARTISTS in the collective.  And I am just as sure that those 3 Wise Men are feeling quite proud that when the first, second, and third cash prizes were announced, they were won by newer members Lemus, Peter Van Flores III, and Skip. 

 

Lemus

Lemus

 

 

The whole of ‘Sell Out’ covered ALL of the rooms and hallways of the City Arts Factory and included work from Asaan Swamburger Brooks, Chris Tobar Rodriguez, Trez Harris, Peter Van Flores III, Peterson Guerrier, German Lemus, Steve Parker, Julio Sanchez, Jacob Cordell, Skip, Morgan Wilson, Halsi Helfrich, and Lucy.

 

Skip, Robin Pedrero, and Swam

Skip, Robin Pedrero, and Swam

 

Skip

 

 

I am so PROUD of each and every one of them right now, and I’m thinking of how important this exhibit is for the FUTURE of the ARTS in our ‘City Beautiful.’  Of course this exhibit goes into my “highly recommended” list, but there’s even more I want to share at this moment.

 

Swam

Swam

 

Trez

Trez

 

 

My ART collection was created by being at the right place at the right time – and buying ART So I am giving this NOTE TO COLLECTORS – Grab your checkbooks and charge cards and visit the City Arts Factory in downtown Orlando over the next three weeks AND BUY THE ART OFF THE WALLS. 

 

With the talent, the youth, and the bright future this group presents to us – the prices listed on the tags of their current work suddenly makes buying ART – in downtown Orlando – an investment in the future, and this exhibit is so good there is every reason that the B-Side Artists SHOULD Sell Out.

 

 

Josh Garrick is the Florida Arts Editor for Wandering Educators

 

 

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