The Institute of Urban Arts is a new London-based organisation which “Aims to create an online platform for study, research and debate” in urban art. They are also searching for a permanent space in which to house a gallery and events.
There doesn’t seem to be much more info apart from a link to a Kickstarter for a book called Abstract / Urban, which suggests that both the book and IOUA are the brainchild of Rob Swain, who used to be the brains behind urban design outfit Gamma Proforma. Here’s an extract from the Kickstarter blurb:
In essence, urban art was born of experimentation and abstraction. The wildstyle, the scratch, the collage of sampled sounds, b-boys battling against gravity...
Slanted, on its head - challenging perceptions across the cultural spectrum.
In this new book we examine the birth, fusion, and evolution of urban arts through a series of landmark works. Discussing defining moments and key contributors with the those who drove and bore witness.
This isn't a hip-hop who's who or an A-Z of style writers. This is about the challengers, the left-turns, the pioneers, the forgotten, the fearless, the upsetters... the game changers.
We Join the dots, crossing the tracks, focusing on the works that redefined the art form.Rob Swain
There’s definitely a need for somewhere to both showcase and discuss graffiti and the many other forms of urban art which exist - as well as research on how such artforms have inspired visual trends over the years.
The enterprise seems rather nascent, but good luck to it getting off the ground. For more, visit the IOUA site.