Indeed, the pieces that the judges favored in the challenge were, in the Sucklord’s words, “more akin to murals than street art,” all-too-carefully crafted under “phony” protected circumstances … much like many of the streetish artworks by top-selling street artists like, say, Shepard Fairey or Mr. Brainwash. Of creating his own “mural,” the Sucklord stated, “I felt like a tiny little rat in a maze trapped in some kind of psychological experiment that was designed to confuse me, break me down. In that regard it was an accurate portrayal of what I was really feeling. It just didn’t necessarily make for compelling street art.”
So what constitutes compelling street art today—is it painstakingly rendered artworks created while top auctioneers and gallerists loiter nearby, overseeing the making of the unlawful art/investments and offering critical feedback to the artists, who, rather than go undercover, are nationally televised B-list celebrities? That’s what Bravo would have us believe. And Bravo knows everything.
CONCLUSION: Well, perhaps clandestine, adrenaline-rush-inducing, just-for-the-lawbreaking-thrill-of-it street art is dead or dying, but artists whose minds remain in the street (not to say the gutter) do not lack recourse. “I completely failed as an artist,” the Sucklord confessed of his stint on Work of Art. “But I think in some regard it could be a successful piece of performance art. I’ll even venture to say that it was a performance art piece about public failure, in the style of Andy Kaufman,” he explained, before admitting, “Well that’s the excuse that everyone who loses makes—it was just a performance art piece! It was a joke, get it?”