Is it a surfboard? An alien? A comic book character?
I’m frequently asked these questions about my Twitter avatar, which shows a blue blob with a single eye and a mischievous smile:
I snapped the photo this summer on a stroll through the Lower East Side and Chinatown. I was jonesing for a bubble tea at Ten Ren Tea Time on Mott Street, and decided to walk there from the East Village.
The sun was shining, the streets were buzzing with activity, and I wanted an excuse to wear my favorite (and little-used) orange tank top.
I always keep an eye out for street art and bring my trusty Canon G11 when I roam the city streets. But I didn’t expect to find this clever graffiti art on Houston Street!
This adorable blue alien covers about a third of a block on Houston Street.
Something about this work makes me smile; when I look into Mr. Blob’s eye, I feel like a child watching Saturday morning cartoons.
I’m not sure who created this masterpiece, and a Google search did not turn up any leads. The main clue is a cryptic signature:
2501 / N.Y. 08 / Sk vB / PiF
Perhaps it is written in an alien tongue?
The artwork has been covered by scaffolding for ages. I kind of like the plywood and metal bars that obscure this street art; they make it seem like you are “discovering” a hidden work or art for the first time.
I felt like the urban, female version of Indiana Jones when I stumbled across it!
The street mural is actually quite complicated. The alien is joined by several fluffy creatures that look like silk worms and doughnuts. The bright colors and bubble shapes remind me of Keith Haring‘s New York City graffiti.
At the end of the mural there is another clue that hints at the artist’s identity. Written in glowing green letters, the text reads:
TO MY SiSTA iLLY ♥
It’s heartwarming to know this creative artwork was inspired by the artist’s love for his (her?) sister.
If you know who created this masterpiece, please leave a comment below!