There is so much life and energy in this exhibit by Chicago’s Pose and LA’s Revok. The two graffiti artists recently took six days to produce a giant, colorful mural at the corner of Bowery and Houston in New York, and also combined forces to develop their show, Uphill Both Ways, that was displayed for one month at the Jonathan Levine Gallery.
Both Pose and Revok draw upon the world to create their art. Revok physically takes stuff from his environment–materials from abandoned homes, buildings, and schools–breaks it down, and reassembles it to create something new and powerful. Pose samples things from everyday culture–comics, advertising, signage–and repurposes the art to have bold new meanings.
Regardless of differences in technique, the two ensured that Uphill Both Ways conceptually tied together through the meaningful title that references the struggles everyone endures in life. Revok says, “You set goals for yourself and you work hard to achieve those goals. Once you get there you realize there’s a whole new hill to climb, the struggle never ends. And it’s how you face the struggle and continue to stay motivated, and hungry, and persevere in the face of that struggle that defines you. Not the struggle itself. So here we are, still climbing.”