From Paris’ famed District 13 to Amsterdam Nieuw-West,
Street Art Museum Amsterdam (SAMA) is bringing the power of global urban art to the Netherlands.
Through interactive exhibition, SAMA explores Amsterdam as a city with an identity crisis.
What does it mean to be 'Lieve Stad' in the contemporary times?
Part love letter, part thought provoker,
Capital Crisis is an expression of pure emotion.
“The way the work reflect the spirit of the community is a powerful vehicle for social inclusion and adds so much richness to the city of Amsterdam.”
- Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London
"In October 2017 SAMA was invited to the 13 Art Fair to be part of a contemporary urban art gallery event with international artists from over 20 countries. 13 Art Fair celebrated the variety of ideas that find their roots in urban subcultures: street art, graffiti, Pop Surrealism, Low Brow, and skate, punk, and tattoo culture respectively. In its various facets, urban art is positioned as the great global international movement of the turn of the 20th and 21st centuries.SAMA’s invite to the 13 Art Fair is the story of a journey, one where a low budget organization was part of a recognized moment in contemporary art. In contrast to many of the other gallery artist, SAMA was the closest to the roots of urban subculture and an outlier within the outliers.
The story of the journey is what we see on these walls, two different realities of a city experience that seem to go against preconceptions. The tidy Paris side of the wall (left) is not what was expected, and the chaotic Amsterdam (right) come together in the center under the banner of liberty. Both cities are said to be the capitals of freedom and choice, thought, and ideas, but the underlying reality of similar political and societal tensions are what strings them along. SAMA arrived in Paris after a long, budget bus trip and were greeted with warmth by its people. Their scrappy presence and message felt out of place in such a refined city, but underneath the surface was a world of like minded rebellion.
The collected items show the connections SAMA could draw with urban subculture, ideas and places that could also had a home back in Amsterdam. Once difference, however, was how differently the locals reacted to visitors...and to places away from the city center. The Nieuw-West is Amsterdam’s largest neighborhood, yet it is continuously left off of Amsterdam map. SAMA’s love of their home - Geuzenveld/Slotermeer - and association with off the beaten path spots - Schiphol SPOT Community and Sloterdijken - around the city inspired the creation of an alternative map of Amsterdam (center of right wall).
Our map celebrates occupational culture and overlooked spaces that don’t get larger recognition because they’re non-traditional, and we uplift these local voices that are a large part of the city. The map is inspired by urban art culture; low brow, squat culture, and occupational movements whose participants created art for themselves without care for the rules. The collected images that surround the map are sourced from places around the city, and the red yarn links the location to the object.
The messy presentation is a stark contrast to the left because Amsterdam’s just like Paris' reality is not what it seems.
What SAMA saw in Paris wasn’t expected hostility, lack of English understanding, fear. Just like “Graffiti” comes from “graph”, One Line connects Lieve Stad of Amsterdam and the city of LIberty - Paris, as our crew saw it: kind, empathetic, friendly. By following the red line on the wall, you can follow the story of relationships, questions, and conflicts that the two cities share. The places served a purpose, and today Amsterdam’s remnants are a positive, stubborn reminder that non-conforming exists for good."
Give me Amsterdam
That is more beautiful Than Paris
Give me Amsterdam
My Mokums paradise
Johnny Jordaan - Geef Mij Maar Amsterdam
Immanuel Kanthof 1, 1064VR Amsterdam, Netherlands