‘Off The Wall’ by Murfin x Lidia Cao
A collaborative whirlwind exhibition by Wasuka Art x Nonage Gallery
‘Off the Wall’ was a collaborative and immersive visual experience created by immensely popular and established Spanish mural and graffiti artists Murfin Manuel and Lidia Ciao. The exhibition acted as a window between Europe and the East and was their debut showcase in Asia.
The concept behind ‘Off the Wall’ was inspired by the synchronization between the natures of mural art and the sellability of visual art. Traditionally, the very nature of mural art is to find transient residence in spaces and places where visual narratives by multiple artists, layered one atop the other, co-exist. The lifespan of an artist’s mural in such a setting is fleeting as a result – likely to be superimposed or whitewashed after a while. Subsequently, the question of authority is a recurring debate: does mural art belong to the artist, the owner of the wall/street or space? Or does it belong to the community?
Concurrently, the lifespan of art that is for sale is similarly transient in that it stays on a public wall until it is bought, after which it finds residence away from the eyes of the world. The question of ownership in such a setting however, unlike that of mural art, is irrefutable.
‘Off the Wall’ was a bridge between these two worlds where high-quality Spanish mural art was introduced to the latitudes and longitudes of a dynamic gallery space in Singapore to open up the conversation of how mural art, traditionally restricted to the streets, can be converted into more intimate spaces, thereby challenging the traditional know-how of how one consumes graffiti mural art. The exhibition was a collaborative visual experience between Murfin and Lidia Cao of Spain who showcased their individual as well as collaborative styles across a series of panels and canvases that were bought off the wall. The act of purchasing left behind the whispers and silhouettes of where the canvas once was, carrying through the conversation that mural art, like traditional visual art, can be consumed as well.
To build on the collaboration, the artists worked with selected students of 10 Square by The Rice Company Limited (TRCL), who collaborated on two statement works with Murfin and Lidia – drawing on the nature of co-existence in graffiti art practice. These pieces were auctioned by TRCL, in support of providing free education in the arts to children in Singapore.
‘Off the Wall’ was a vibrant conversation focused on making graffiti art easily accessible, intimate, and consumable.