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Museum of Graffiti presents FUZI: Defaced in Wynwood

Written By Shanieya Harris
January 5, 2022 at 5:48 PM

French graffiti and tattoo artist FUZI; image courtesy Museum of Graffiti.

Graffiti artists.

Some people view them as outlaws. Others label their work as immature or inadequate. But fans, artists, and curators have documented its evolution and are changing the minds of those who misunderstand it.

“Graffiti artists are distinct,” said Allison Frieden Co-founder and General Counsel at the Museum of Graffiti. “Don’t confuse them with the artist emoji: the beret to the side, painting palette in one hand and a paintbrush in the other…”

The museum’s latest exhibit offers viewers a chance to engage in this emerging movement.

“Defaced” featuring artwork by French graffiti and tattoo artist FUZI, is now showing through February 1. The event is located in the heart of Wynwood at 299 NW 25th St. General admission for adults is required to enter.

Over 20 new paintings of characters inspired by FUZI’s life and influences are featured in the exhibit.

It’s a celebration of people you may find in the streets; a crowd of thugs, cops, creepy guys, sexy girls, homeless, city workers, dogs, hipsters. FUZI mixes businessmen with cartoon characters from his childhood, blending traditional Bboys and vintage flash tattoo designs, fusing illustrations and old logo inspirations.

Look out for the 153 x 30 feet painting added to the neighborhood murals that took FUZI 3 full days to complete, as well as a 360 degree fully painted immersive room for selfies.

FUZI’s style comes from 30 years of creativity.

He started his work at the end of the ’80s in the suburbs of Paris. He had moved with his father into a small apartment close to a train yard. He would hang out there every day with friends, writing their names in spray paint on the sides of trains. At the same time, he discovered hip hop and his love for “writing” (painting words as graffiti) deepened.

What FUZI likes most from this form of art is that you don’t have to ask to get things done. You simply take it, utilizing dedication and passion to figure it out. Developing his own style, FUZI never tried to be different or trendy, but true to himself.

“Art is everywhere, you just have to open your eyes and, more importantly, your mind,” he explained.

“I often find beauty in what is commonly described as dirty or ugly. There are no rules, no wrong or right art, but different sensibilities. If you like it, that’s art.”

“For example,” he continued, “I understand the amount of work, time, and talent behind a masterpiece in a museum, but I sometimes feel more excited or attracted by a funny drawing in a bathroom door, a hand-painted strip club sign, or a drippy tag…”

Graffiti is a big tree with a lot of roots; you are not obligated to love all of them, but it’s not because it’s illegal or it’s not your taste or that it’s not art.”

To define what one may see once entering this invasion would be “freedom”:  it is going where you are not supposed to go without permission and expressing yourself. It also means universality, coming from any kind of background, culture, and education.

“You can move the kid away from graffiti, but much like this museum demonstrates… You cannot take the graffiti out of the kid,” said Frieden. “The art continues to make its way around the world.”

Shanieya Harris is part of the Artburst Miami Arts Journalism Mentoring Cohort for 2021. Learn more about this initiative HERE. This blog item is presented as part of the Artburst Miami Mentorship Program.

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