Back, back to the belly of the map – A.T.L.A.N.T.A. – to shine on the poptastic Greg Mike.
New York born and bred, but Tallahassee trained, this artist meshes graphic design, street art, creative, branding, and fashion design to create a style all too collaborative – but inevitably all is unique own.
Right when I was beginning to fumble and falter, this man made me remember why there was a time when Forever I Love(d) Atlanta – thank God for gallery exhibitions
Whether it’s his signature “Loudmouth” donning gravel, gates, ghettos, gas stations grills, and urban gardens
or his Popstarred Cokeheads graffitti-tatting your local brick walls
Like any true artist though, Mike is a staple in the streets and the sweets – from gutter to gallery
Greg Mike’s art is a melange; muppets with a bit more malice, globetrotting grills with a bit more “go getta,” Factory Pop Art with a bit more funk and fantasy, and graffiti with a thin layer of glitz over the grime: it’s street, it’s sweet, it’s a vibrantly tweaked teenage wasteland, it’s subterranean celebrity – it’s Popstars and Cokeheads.
I love Greg Mike’s art because it is so visceral. It’s like my current inner child. The characters are so unique and fantastical. They are so colorful and bright. It’s like Adult Swim. However, the emotions conveyed are polar to the surface depiction – it’s like animated apathy. The Coke cans and cartoon figures alike are multifaceted little monsters. There’s a bull in a suit steaming with passion, but standing stiffly – as a recently graduated Taurus I know that feeling all too well. There’s a monster with pencils in his ears, and another with ink spilling out – the personification, and antidote, to writer’s block. At the core is the underlying drug theme behind his latest pieces. It’s something that can’t be ignored or denied – especially here and now. However, that is exactly what the work expresses – the devillification of that problem. If you turn a cokehead into a kid’s cartoon figure, you demystify it and make it accessible… not any less impactful, just less detached and more real – through fantasy.
Honestly, I just like his work because it is fun, it is innate, it says something – it screams it without saying a word, it Pops, and it is so incredibly now.
Watch This Space: