In this blog post we will cover the history of the three wise monkeys, Graffiti, and, some of my pieces from 2023.

Graffiti, an expressive form of art, transcends traditional boundaries to deliver powerful messages and showcase individual creativity. Emerging from the streets, graffiti encompasses a wide array of styles, from elaborate murals to simple tags. It serves as a vibrant medium for self-expression, social commentary, and cultural representation. Graffiti artists skillfully manipulate colors, lines, and shapes to transform public spaces into dynamic canvases that resonate with energy and emotion. While the art form has faced its share of controversy, often associated with unauthorized markings, it undeniably contributes to the visuals of cities worldwide, offering a unique lens through which to explore diverse perspectives and narratives.

My love for spray paint grew when I used it more in the spring of 2023. I used a combination of traditional painting with brushes and spray painting the small mural I did as part of the collaboration between visual artists and poets. I used spray paint to get certain effects that are not achievable with traditional brush painting. 

a mural I painted using some spay spray paints (Graffiti)
A mural I made using some spray paints

The three wise monkeys, also known as the “See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil” monkeys, are a symbolic trio representing a moral maxim that originated in Japan. Each monkey is depicted in a distinct pose: one covering its eyes, symbolizing “See No Evil” to promote the idea of avoiding temptation and immorality; another covering its ears, representing “Hear No Evil” to encourage the avoidance of harmful influences and gossip; and the third covering its mouth, symbolizing “Speak No Evil” to emphasize the importance of refraining from spreading negativity or engaging in malicious speech. This iconic trio has transcended cultural boundaries and become a widely recognized symbol around the world, serving as a reminder of the virtues of restraint, mindfulness, and ethical conduct in various aspects of life.

three wise monkey’s

I wanted all of these pieces to have a similar vibe but be a little different. “It’s So Loud” has the print “misophonia” directly printed on the unstreached canvas. “Everyone is Watching” has the eyes from “My Eyes” shown through ripped paper. “Just Shut Up” is more similar to “Everyone is watching” but due to the nature of canvas and the sewing shut of the mouth I decided to sew the openings… well… open. (haha)

To see the individual pieces check out my portfolio