AZWasHere Re-Ignites the Police Brutality Debate With His Street Art


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Around Thanksgiving of 2014, police made the gruesome discovery of a woman’s body stuffed into a Central City trash can in New Orleans, USA. While the neighborhood mourned the woman’s death, observers also noted the presence of a cryptic image on the wall near the Danneel Street alley where her body was stashed, a Cupid-like angel watching a figure walk away from arrows that missed.

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Not too long afterward, officials at the Lycee Francais charter school were in the process of completing their purchase of the former Priestley campus in Carrollton, more than three miles away, when they noticed a politically charged mural on the old gym. “May the Police Force Be With You,” the stencil read, with an image of Darth Vader force-choking a man being held by police officers.

Like those who saw the image at the murder scene, the Lycee Francais officials wondered among themselves: Was it a Banksy?

Despite the obvious comparisons, the artist is not Banksy.  It is a street artist that goes by the name of “AzWasHere“. Az is 32, has lived in seven or eight cities, and moved to New Orleans about two years ago. He started tagging about two years before that.

New Orleans, he said, has become a place of “refuge” for him, and he no longer wants to move around. Instead, he and artist Rex Dingler are collaborating on a project called “Not Jericho,” a sort of Craigslist to connect artists with property owners who have walls they want painted.

“New Orleans has been so against murals and graffiti in general, now that they are starting to want more public art, they’re having a hard time finding the artists,” Az said.

You can follow Az on his website and on Facebook.

The Homeless In Our Backyard:

The Homeless In Our Backyard

“And why, exactly, must we rise up, strip our oppressors of the power they lord over us, and be the change we want? We’ll find out, after these messages from our sponsors.”

And why, exactly, must we rise up, strip our oppressors of the power they lord over us, and be the change we want

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Smarter than the average homo erectus:

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A holy crap:

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Bankx: not for sale:

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And don’t forget, if you’re looking for a piece of original art to hang on your walls, check out artFido HERE!


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