Archive for “February, 2011”

Kensington: Graffiti to Be Removed from Shepard Fairey Mural

By John Paul Titlow

When Lauren Cassady first saw the photos on Facebook, she was infuriated.  A friend of hers from the East Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia had posted pictures of the side of a building with a large graffiti tag containing the word “Spain.”

Cassady removes graffiti from the mural with special solvents.

Cassady removes graffiti from the mural with special solvents.

Graffiti on a brick wall is not that unusual in Philadelphia, but for residents of the neighborhood, this tag was particularly irksome.  It was made on a mural by Shepard Fairey, the world-renowned street artist most famous for creating the iconic “hope” poster of then-presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Fairey and a team of artists came to Philadelphia on April 23, 2010, and produced three murals, of which this was one. In mid-January of this year, residents noticed that the mural had been defaced with the large black and white tag.

After seeing photos of the tagged mural, Cassady, a professional art conservator, volunteered to come to the corner of Frankford Avenue and Norris Street two days per week to remove the graffiti.

To remove the spray paint and marker used to make the graffiti, Cassady sits on a bucket in front of the mural, slowly dabbing the tagged portion of it with a solvent-soaked Q-Tip.

Cassady dabs at the spray paint with a Q-Tip.

Cassady dabs at the spray paint with a Q-Tip.

“It’s a very slow process,” said Cassady. “You can’t use a lot of solvent at a time, or else you will harm the original work.”

She won’t be able to remove the tag completely, but hopes to get the mural as close to its original state as possible.

Cassady isn’t being paid to restore the mural, but rather volunteered to do it for her portfolio and because she genuinely enjoys restoring artwork, however tedious it might seem.

“It’s pure zen to me,” she said. “I just love it.”

1929 Harley-Davidson – Found in toilet

We have all heard amazing stories of rare and expensive motorcycles found in barns around the world. However, this is the first time we’ve heard of a bike being found in a toilet. This is how the story goes… in the late 1940’s a gentleman by the name of Mr Bicker had heard tales that a Harley, still in a wooden crate, was sitting in a remote mine in Western Australia. After an extensive search his father located the bike and it turned out to be in the men’s room of the mine. Best of all, the machine was a factory racer with overhead valves. Essentially a twenty year old motorcycle at the time, it was not considered rare but still a desirable ride. The owner at the mines was not able to get the bike running so he decided to sell it. Removing the wheels, the motorcycle was carted home in the back of his father’s car. After he got it home, Bicker was able to get the Harley started easily, maybe running it for the first time since it was imported.

On January 6th 2011, this rare 1929 Harley-Davidson fetched $125,800 at the Bonhams Vegas auction – not bad for a ‘toilet find’. But this was not just any Harley. This Peashooter was in exceptional original condition, perhaps the best known in the world. With its known racing heritage, the bike is in remarkable shape and people have thought it looks like its been in a time capsule since it left the Milwaukee factory in 1929. original post by