Who says art can’t make a difference? Follow internationally renowned 3D artist Julian Beever as he shares his talent to communities around the world. One has no choice but to slow down from the hectic pace of life and marvel at what’s unfolding on their sidewalk.
Episode 1. American Eagle
Julian arrives in Philadelphia, the largest city in Pennsylvania and referred to as “the City of Brotherly Love.” It’s coming up to the 4th of July celebrations and Julian has three days to complete a 3D masterpiece. Will Julian be able to create a drawing which both sums up the festivities and does justice to its history? We also meet Jane Golden co-coordinator of the Philadelphia Mural Art Program alongside the anti graffiti network. Jane has been involved in the creation of 2,700 murals throughout Philadelphia–more murals than any other city in the world.
Episode 2. Big Ben
This week Julian is in London. He is here to wow the London public with a drawing which pays homage to one of its most famous landmarks. We find out about Guerrilla art in London in a city blanketed with CCTV cameras. We see one of the last “walls of fame” out of sight of the cameras for a jam with up to 30 artists from all over London. We also meet graphic designer and legendary guerrilla artist D*Face who has been adorning the streets of London using spray paint, stickers, posters and stencils for years, but has had to retreat to a studio and display his work in a gallery with an increased fear of prosecution. And Arofish a London based graffiti artist who has become as infamous as Banksy with his stencil based drawings all over the capital.
Episode 3. Gone Fishing
Julian is looking out across the beautiful rivers of Stockholm. Made up of 14 islands Stockholm is known for its beauty and the water. Julian explains he is here to create a drawing which encompasses the stunning picturesque views of rivers and canals while creating a piece of art that sums up the national sport of fishing. We learn about local street artists who are adapting to the new anti graffiti laws in Stockholm and meet artists who have turned from Graffiti tagging to creating tags with wool. Also underground Graffiti artists who have to hide under railway bridges for fear of arrest and art campaigners who have created a phenomenon out of dog sculptures on roundabouts after vandals destroyed a sculpture by a local artist. The weather isn’t good at this time of year in Sweden. Julian only has three days to complete the drawing; will the elements prevent completion of his work?
Episode 4. Subway Stairs
New York is a city of variety and diversity, and it’s home to some of the most influential visual artists in the world. Julian wants to create a piece of work which captures the heart of the city. Street art in New York first appeared back in the mid 60s in the form of graffiti. One artist who has also made a name for himself in this way is Michael De Feo, also known as “the flower guy.” His simple distinctive images have given him worldwide recognition in the art world. We also meet a 27-year-old street artist named Swoon who specializes in life-size wheat paste prints and paper cutouts of figures.
Episode 5. Berlin Beer
Berlin is a major city of culture, politics, media and science. Julian tells us how he is here to astound the public with an incredible 3D drawing and create an image which is will bring smile to the people of Berlin. We go to an exhibition of 40 artists who have come together to celebrate how the streets have become a gallery and how it develops a city. We also meet Thierry Noir one of the original artists from the East Side Gallery, which is part of the remaining Berlin wall, a 1.3km-long section of the wall where approximately 106 paintings by artists from all over the world cover this memorial for freedom and make it the largest open-air gallery in the world.
Episode 6. Still Life in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the capital and largest city in the Netherlands. It’s a city famous for tulips, canals, bridges and of course its Dutch masters. Julian is looking for a location that will inspire him to create a stunning 3D still life. This is his first time creating a still life and he wants to get all the elements right. Will he do this art form justice? This week we meet Laser 3.14, a street artist known for his poetic tags around the city. Laser has created an exhibition, by asking 14 street artists to create the Aerosol Symphonies, where the worlds of traditional music and modern street art are brought together. We also meet the legendary street artist Faith 71, who has earned respect as an artist creating beautiful, intricate portraits using a spray can within galleries around Amsterdam, yet still has the drive and adrenaline rush of creating art on the streets.
Episode 7. The Great Quake
San Francisco is a major and diverse international center of culture in terms of arts, music, festivals, museums and much more. It’s also home to the California earthquake of April 18, 1906, which ranks as one of the most significant earthquakes of all time. Julian is going to attempt to recreate this scene from history. Will he be able to capture the scale of the disaster in a 3D image? We also meet Sirron Norris who is a fixture among the San Francisco art scene, known for his signature style “cartoon literalism,” and Dave Warnke, whose sticker street art can be seen in San Francisco and numerous other countries. His aim is to provide a subversion in the mundane grayness of the urban landscape.
Episode 8. Eiffel Tower
Paris is the capital of France and full of beauty, history and romance. Julian looks for the perfect spot, but comes up against problems when he discovers that it is forbidden to do pavement drawing anywhere in the city center. Will he find a suitable spot to create his image in this city renowned for art and culture? We also discover that Paris is renowned for its stencil artists. We meet a young crew who work in the streets of Paris and create images, which they feel “make people dream.” And Blek le Rat, known as the Godfather of stencil art and famously referred to by Banksy as his icon. We see him working in his studio and he talks to us about how street art has evolved since the 1980s.
Episode 9. Mexican Butterfly
In the home of esteemed muralists like Diego Rivera, Julian attempts to create a work that captures the natural and surrealist beauty that is Mexico. “Concrete Canvas” also takes viewers to “Just Writing My Name,” a major street art event for graffiti writers that has no rules or restrictions. Street artists interviewed in this episode include Joshua “The Black Window” Becuho and Seher, who create optical illusions by painting holes which entice the observer into a “vestibule for an imaginary place.”
Episode 10. Bathing Beauty
In the capital of fantasy, Julian beguiles scores of curious tourists, hopeful starlets and wannabe rock gods with a 3D piece that captures the glitz and glamour of the L.A. lifestyle, right on the Redondo Beach Pier. Viewers also get to meet Shepard Fairey, the creator of the famous underground icon known as the “Obey Giant,” which can be found on street corners, stop signs and now T-shirts around the globe.
“Concrete Canvas” features the work of UK artist Julian Beever. He has made pavement drawings for more than 20 years all around the world as a freelance artist. The pavement drawings have included both renderings of old masters plus a wealth of original pieces of work. Some of his portraits pay homage to or are in obituary to the famous. Known as the “Pavement Picasso,” Julian uses a process called anamorphosis to create the 3D illusions, which he first plots on paper.