Monday, October 15, 2012

Painting the Town Green

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A Statement in Moss

By: Ian Salamanca

 As you may know, I'm all about making a greener city; even if only visually I feel Los Angeles could use a healthy dose of flora.  So an idea I have been playing around with for a little while, is going to be my first proposition for a club project.  The concept is known as Moss Graffiti, and has been gaining in popularity in many metropolitan cities and many green art movements.  The idea is to create a sort of "Moss Paint" in which one would create their design, and then come back weekly to water it into life.  Moss is a tough life form that grows well in any orientation with a moist environment that gets moderate sunlight.  It tenaciously clings to porous surfaces such as brick, stone or wood; and best of all, like all plants provides clean oxygen for those around it.

Making the stuff is easy, as many of the sites I found (and included below) state:

  • One or two clumps (about a small handful) of moss
  • 2 cups of buttermilk
    • You can also substitute with yogurt (vegan yogurt can be used)
    • 2 cups of water
    • 1/2 tsp. sugar
    • Corn syrup (optional as a thickening agent)
    • Mixing and Cleaning Bucket
Basically you make a mossmilk smoothie which you can then use as your paint.  Thicker concoctions would be good for heavy paintbrushes, if it's thinner it can be apply by spray bottle or airbrush.  From there you are free to start tagging this urban jungle. 

(Obviously Graffiti is illegal, so you're not exactly free to start tagging. Though this art form is botanical, the law doesn't take kindly to people painting things on buildings, so make sure you get a permit first or paint your own stuff!)

If we go with this idea you can be sure we will keep you updated on our steps and growth.  My hope was to work with a local LA Artist and our school.  For now, enjoy these examples of Moss Art I collected for you!


Making Moss Paint:

The WikiHow for the stuff:

The Instructables for it:


Examples of Moss Art in Practice:

Used in the "Mind the Gap" Project, other cool designs featured as well:

REALLY COOL moss art:

Moss Art Tumbler:

Reverse Moss Art (Cleaning away filth to create graffiti):

Slideshow of same project but a different format:

Moss Artists:

 Mosstika Urban Greenery (I love the subway piece)

Anna Garforth:

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