Internationally Renowned Street Artist, Gaia, Joins Kingston’s 2013 O+ Roster

Internationally known street artist Gaia joined us for 2013’s Kingston, NY O+ Festival, ambitiously taking on one of the city’s largest wall spaces for an eight-story original mural. Watch an artist profile produced by StudiO+, replete with time-lapse video of this awe-inspiring, one-man installation:

Gaia’s latest works endeavor to, “…remind us of lost human connections to nature and the environment.” About the mural Gaia designed for Kingston, he says, “The piece features the Greek goddess Artemis from a photo I took at the Vatican descending into a gaping limestone quarry with a skyline of New York City on the horizon and a Corinthian crown at the top. This piece goes in three directions: 1) A reference to Kingston’s proximity to natural resources that helped build New York City; 2) the process of resource exploitation as a defiling of the Mother Earth; 3) marble and limestone used for architectural embellishments in early Neo classical revival / Georgian American architecture, the statue not only representing Mother Earth but also is a Hellenistic and roman reference as a celebration of democracy in early United States history. This is further suggested with the Corinthian column.”

Gaia not only created this magnificent painting in a single week, but he also cashed in with some extremely valuable dental work thanks to our dental volunteers. Read more about this mural on Brooklyn Street Art.

photo by Andy Milford
The finished mural. Photo by Andy Milford
Photo by Andy Milford
Gaia surveying his work. Photo by Andy Milford

Richard Buckner Talks Life & Death with StudiO+

An exclusive StudiO+ appearance by Richard Buckner

Richard Buckner’s most recent record, Surrounded (2013, Merge Records), is his tenth full-length in a legacy dating back just shy of two decades. During that span, he’s stirred a substantial cult following of heartened fans — nearly spiritual about his music — whispering of him accolades like “greatest living songwriter.”

Some claim that his style defies categorization, in a gesture of reverence, but Pitchfork and NPR agree on an outsider-country parallel to Townes Van Zandt. Others posit a Dylan who managed to evolve favorably with the times, or a Jeff Buckley who’d hung in there.

He’s a hard man to pin down — making his way from a bookstore clerk in Atlanta, to forklift driver, Con Ed roadside power lines crew, census worker, mentor to autistic children over the years, all the while recording from Tuscon to Lubbock, Alberta to San Fran to rural Washington to, now, Kingston, New York. Note one of his records has ever been panned by the critics, and yet, his reputation has never breached the levy that keeps fringe acts from the Starbucks crowd — less one brief glimpse at a broader audience when a particularly bleak and beautiful track made an unexpected appearance in a series of Volkswagen commercials years after its 1998 release.

With collaborators spanning from Calexico to members of Tortoise, the Sea and the Cake, Palace Brothers, Sonic Youth, to Guided by Voices, Sebadoh and more, Buckner has been making excellent music in excellent company for eighteen years, and now from his Kingston, New York home base, he joined the roster of the O+ Kingston 2012 where he performed at Kingston’s Old Dutch Church venue and received long-wanted dental care via O+’s wellness exchange. Since, Buckner has been a welcomed part of the O+ family. Above is his exclusive performance and interview for Kingston’s StudiO+, filmed and produced by O+ partners Evolving Media Network.

A version of this article by Alexandra Marvar appeared in the Kingston NY O+ 2012 program, published by Chronogram