Varet Wall Mural Project Latest Mural

“Nothing is forever,” Brooklyn-based artist Vexta says when discussing street art’s temporary life span. Living in Bushwick, street art has become as routine as the L train shutdowns however, with this week’s completion of a new mural outside of Tutu’s bar, three people – Beth Tully, curator of The Varet Wall Mural Project, Lucas Walters, co-owner of Tutu’s Brooklyn, and Australian artist, Yvette Vexta (Vexta) — want to make sure you continue to take notice of the changing community’s landscape.

The skilled, Bushwick-iconic murals you see on the corner of Bogart and Varet Streets aren’t coincidental. They are the brainchild of The Varet Wall Mural Project (#varetwall), the neighborhood’s unique version to the Houston/Bowery wall, and are carefully curated by Tully, a former director to the Fountain Art Fair in collaboration with Walters and Tutu’s Brooklyn. Tully commissions artists for six-month rotations, and past participants have included renowned international artists Pixel Pancho, Nychos and the artist collective, En Masse.

Vexta, Varet Wall’s first female artist is scheduled to complete her mural by this Thursday, Friday at the latest and Tully couldn’t be more excited. Vexta’s piece coincides with the impending warmer weather and Tully notes that “its new color {on the wall}, it’s sexy”.

Living in Williamsburg with a studio a few blocks from Tutu’s, Vexta beams when talking about her involvement with Varet Wall. Referring to the space, she states “I always wanted to paint it” and again, she quotes the community element that all three express organically throughout the interview, “Its painting in my neighborhood.”

As a curator, Tully selects artists she believes are the “next generation” and who “showcase the best of the best” in street art. She would know, as both her and Walter’s circles combine Bushwick’s street art subculture and the art world – Walters used to work at Deitch Projects, the now closed contemporary SoHo art gallery.

These connections originally led her to Vexta who moved to Brooklyn three years ago. In fact, they met at one of Walter’s infamous “Things Might Get Weird” parties. Unlike most artists, Vexta didn’t move to NYC to “move to NYC.” She desired something more rewarding and to be taken out of her comfort zone.

A similar vein exists in Vexta’s mural for Varet Wall because as an artist, she is working with a new character: the mermaid. Her work is influenced by science, nature and mythology and she navigates both 2D and 3D surfaces, painting on skulls, bones and ostrich eggs to explore themes of life and death. Metamorphism is another source of exploration and she often employs triangular shapes as her subject’s tails, describing them as “subatomic particles that remind people that we are all interconnected”.

Other works by Vexta

Where there was once controversy over corporate advertisements above the mural space, a new landlord recognizes the importance of Varet Wall’s mission and has given them something they never had before: a budget. Donations from Montana Cans and a discount from Crest’s True Value Hardware store help offset other costs.

A Blue Moon advertisement ironically made to resemble the street art surrounding it will accompany Vexta as she paints.

See Vexta finish her mural outside Tutu’s on the corner of Varet and Bogart Street. Her work will be at The Varet Wall Mural Project until October 2015.