Artist Daniel Osorno’s Mushroom Wall recently dropped and we got to perch from behind-the scenes and catalog this colorful new street art mural as it came to life, bourgeoning slowly as if a butterfly from a cocoon. Born in Medellin, Colombia, Daniel started creating art when he was six years old with what he describes as, “a great looking pencil from my mother”. Almost entirely self-taught, with just a few courses under his belt, Daniel has been creating art since 1983.
Having moved to Miami, he picked up a spray can as an adolescent and began working in the Miami graffiti scene, a career that abruptly and dramatically ended when he was arrested. As part of his sentence, the judge instructed Daniel to begin painting on canvases, not illegally on walls, doors or dumpsters.
Daniel leaves an impression not only because of his talent and artistic vision but also because of his hustle, his sense of purpose, his moral compass and his unwavering commitment to his work, each an important trait of any successful artist. Also, he’s just one hell of a nice guy that I like to chill with.
In the summer of 2016, during a Zika virus outbreak in Miami, with it’s ugly epicenter unfortunately in the heart of the Wynwood Arts District, Daniel painted a kick-ass wall in response. After discovering purely by happenstance his Zika wall- a wall that is long gone now that time, bombers and Art Basel 2016 have plowed through the city- I reached out to Daniel and we had the first of several meet ups, each one spent exploring streets of Wynwood, Miami. We talked art and technique and criminal justice and politics and racial injustice and the experience of immigrants in a nation that suddenly was shamelessly unafraid to embrace anti-immigrant policies, xenophobia and was quite happy to demonize brown people born in other lands.
That is the power of art; it allows people- strangers really- to connect and find common ground. After several incarnations, Daniel is back there and has dropped a stunning mushroom wall. Here are some behind-the-scenes shots as the wall happened. I feel lucky that he allowed me to observe and catalog the process this wall coming to life with my camera. Bourgeoning slowly as if come a cocoon, we’ve spent several afternoons together, lost in fumes and conversation.
Let the fumes begin!
Can cans cans…
…and more cans.
It’s the details, like a hand resting on newly-dried paint, that get me.
A tourist & street art supporter stopped by.
Artist Daniel Osorno discussing The Mushroom Wall and the Atlanta street art scene.
Road trip, Daniel? You, me & Edison?
The artist Daniel Osorno getting a final shot of the day’s work. Just some final details left for another day.
Neither I nor my camera were prepared for this. I never am. I’m accustomed to stationery subjects, like paint on a wall.