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Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

Espo Waterboarding for Real

Photo: Sam Horine

Taking his animatronic Waterboard Thrill Ride peep-show one step further, Steve Powers (ESPO) conducted a real-life waterboarding demonstration at a private Coney Island location this past Friday evening. For eight seconds, the artist and three volunteer lawyers became victims of the controversial military interrogation technique, which many say constitutes torture. Check Artforum here for the full story. Below is a brief excerpt from the article.

“Powers, now hooded, was roughly guided to the inclined waterboarding table. (As Ritz explained afterward, the head is laid below the heart so that less water gets into the lungs, allowing the interrogators to prolong the procedure.) Ritz then stuffed a large black rag into Powers’ mouth, held the artist’s nose with one hand, and poured a steady flow of water onto the rag like a frat boy pours a pitcher of beer. After about eight seconds, Powers began to twitch and jerk on the table, and Ritz quickly removed the rag. Dazed and flushed, the artist was led out of the room.”

Posted by ATARMS | Filed in Artist Talk, Brooklyn, Events, Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

Steve Powers Sends Love to Philadelphia


This August Steve Powers returns to his Philadelphia roots, unveiling “Love Letter,” an ambitious 20-block long mural project. According to Powers, the large scale piece was conceived as a “love letter spanning 50 walls and roof tops to be painted in West Philadelphia facing the Market-Frankford Elevated train. The letter is meant for one with meaning for all, and in a larger sense, will be for West Philly from West Philly.” The outdoor installation is being realized with the help of local residents who are being taught the art of sign painting at a temporary school set up by Powers. To complement Love Letter a short film is being produced by Ghost Robot (whose production credits include three Sundance awards for The Station Agent, as well as Stoked: The Rise and Fall of Gator).

The entire endeavor is made possible with a grant awarded to The Mural Arts Program by The Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative, a program funded by The Pew Center for Arts and Heritage, who join a growing list of organizations facilitating and legitimizing Powers’ vital contributions to the public landscape. In 2005 Creative Time backed the Dreamland Artist Club and again lent support for the Waterboard Thrill Ride in 2008 – the same year Powers was awarded a Fulbright grant for a six-month project in Ireland.


Images: Steve Powers

Posted by ATARMS | Filed in Artist Talk, Installation, Public Art | 3 Comments »

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

ESPO in NY Times (Again)

Screen Grab from The Moment, The NY Times Stlye Blog

The Moment (The NY Times Style Magazine’s blog) just reviewed  Steve Powers‘ current exhibit at White Flag Projects in St. Louis (our previous coverage here and here). This certainly isn’t the first time the media outlet has taken notice of Powers.  In 2005 he was featured twice – first in the New York Times Magazine and then the newspaper –  when they covered his rain slicker and Dreamland Artist Club projects, and again in 2006, when the magazine invited him to rework their logo for the Women’s Fashion Fall issue, which was featured across a full page, in addition to a separate artist profile (see images below). In 2008 ESPO again received multiple mentions, with full length articles chronicling both his Waterboard Thrill Ride at Coney Island and Fulbright Scholarship in Ireland (accompanied by this online slideshow).


Scanned from the TAC archives – The New York Times Style Magazine, Women’s Fall Fashion 2006. Click for larger views.

Posted by ATARMS | Filed in Uncategorized | Comment now »

Monday, August 25th, 2008

Steve Powers Separating Light from Dark in Italy

Following the recent media stir over his Coney Island waterboarding installation/demonstration, Steve Powers’ (ESPO) is set to launch his first solo gallery show in Italy. Opening September 10th at Galleria Patricia Armocida in Milan, Separate Light from Dark will feature 25 new enamel on aluminum paintings, alongside the series 8 Week Paintings, first displayed in 2007 at Powers’ museum exhibition at Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.

Steve Powers – Separating Light from Dark
September 10 – October 31, 2008
Opening: September 10th at 6:30

via Bazzini 17, 20131 Milano – IT
tel +39 0236519304/+39 3397291034

Read on for more images and the full press release. Click pics for larger views Read the rest of this entry »