The Wu-Tang Clan, one of Hip-Hop most influential groups, is celebrating their 20 year anniversary. To honor such a momentous occasion Wu-Tang’s co-founder Oliver “Power” Grant is continuing forth with the next phase of the Wu-Tang brand with Wu Tang Hybrid Arts. This past Tuesday (November 17th), Grant and artist Tom Sachs held a discussion at the Neuehouse workspace about Wu-Tang’s sustained cultural relevance and their global impact.
The Wu Tang Hybrid Arts initiative launched on November 9th, 2013 coinciding with the 20th anniversary of the release of group’s debut album, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), at the Wallplay gallery. The initiative culminates in September 2014 with an exhibition at the Japanese American National Museum. The show is curated by Grant, Laura O’Reilly and Jasmine Wahi.
During the discussion Grant touched on various aspects of the group’s philosophy, shedding some insight on the history of the iconic Wu-Tang logo. Grant remarked how the logo is modeled after a phoenix citing its ability to regenerate and how that was aligned with The Wu’s personal philosophy of capitalizing on the social mobility often referred to as the American Dream.
Also at the venue there was a live painting contest between artists Ben Angotti, Danielle Mastrion, Lexi Bella and Andre Trenier as they squared off to depict individual members of the Wu Tang Clan. The artworks was to be auctioned off with the proceeds going to The Children’s Aid Society in Staten Island.
Check out pictures of the event as well as photos of the Wu-Tang inspired paintings in the following pages.
Photos: Darien Henry