There is self-promotion and then there is shameless self-promotion. We've had issues with the shamelessness of "street artist" Michael Owen before. When we wrote about the the Brookshire Suites Hotel's attempt to be hip, we didn't have to say much about the cravenness of Owen's murals: He did it for us. Owen said he doesn't consider himself a graffiti writer, but when the hotel wanted a graffiti-style look, he went around and appropriated styles from various writers around town. When we asked him if he saw a problem with that, he told us "authenticity doesn't pay for my child support or my groceries. Street cred is not a priority for me . . . Baltimore is, you know, small, and I think that that conversation right there of losing credibility by being paid for your work or by appropriating imagery is just kind of tired. I'm not really trying to worry so hard about that, and I don’t know if young kids should either."
Today, Owen made his lack of concern for the streets painfully evident. In response to a badly burning van in Station North, where he is evidently painting yet another mural, Owen wrote: "My new piece is too hot for Baltimore to handle #artlife"
We don't even have anything to say about that #hacklife.