Art of the B-boy Dance
Opening Saturday 9 June, 19HR
Artist Talk Tuesday 12 June, 18HR
Exhibition 13 June - 30 June, 2012
Skalitzers Contemporary Art presents the first solo exhibition in Berlin by renowned New York-based artist, Carlos Mare, aka Mare139 - one of the pioneers of the New York graffiti movement,
and leading figures in the post-graffiti abstract movement.
Mare began his creative career during the formative era of NYC subway writing between 1975-1985, appearing in the original cult classic documentary Style Wars in 1982. Growing up against
the landscape of hip-hop in its evolution, he charted a new discourse about the role and aesthetic
of the art form as sculpture in the public space, beginning in 1985 with letter-based works and
progressing to a more modernist interpretation of the graffiti form. Internationally exhibited and
collected, his sculptural works are among the most innovative of the post NYC subway graffiti
In 2005, Mare returned to an exploration of the line, introducing a series of Bboy studies inspired
by the movement of the Bboy dance and its symbiotic relationship with other improvisational
forms of expression born from rhythm, gesture and style.
Mare's Bboy works marry the abstract, gestural nature of graffiti writing with the motion of the
Bboy dance, effortlessly capturing the essence of the subject in new symbolic, linguistic, and
Carlos Mare's Bboy characters, so refined and visually direct, become coded representations of
the dancer's repertoire of movements and poses. In much the same way that staffed symbols are
used to represent the written form of musical notation, so too the simple, gestural icons come to
express a visual codification, a defined scale of available movements.
- Robert Smith
Similar to the constant evolution of a writer's style, Mare's studies continue to evolve, as he
further explores subjects, mediums and styles. Physical Graffiti: Art of the Bboy Dance is a
culmination of Mare's formative Bboy works since 2005 alongside a new body of paintings and
drawings inspired by collaborations with Berlin writers, Bboy dancers and artists, including Amigo
(Flying Steps), Storm and Jaybo Monk.
The B-boy is the physical Graffiti artist, he is the lyrical and kinetic scratch, he is the break beat
manifest, the most modern of all dancers.
Exhibiting and lecturing throughout the US and Europe, Mare is active in the promotion of the
cultural legacy of urban arts. His works have been exhibited at MOCA in Los Angeles, The Grand
Palais in Paris, Whitney Museum at Philip Morris, Brighton University of Art-England and El
Museo del Barrio in NYC.
Skalitzers Contemporary Art
Skalitzer str, 43