Unauthorized Moss Art
From Banksy to Katsu to Iz the Wiz, we often hear about guerilla graffiti artists who've taken their social critiques to the streets with powerful images and strong words. Along a quieter alley, Hungarian artist Edina Tokodi brings her art to the urban landscape in a softer way, but her message is no less provocative.
Edina Tokodi, whose work appears under the name Mosstika, uses living and organic materials to create images. Tufted bunnies, deer, polar bears, wild turkeys, and pine trees have appeared on the sides of buildings, along scaffolding, in interior installations, and even in lonely subway carriages. Her purpose is simple: to bring nature closer to city dwellers.
At first neatly pruned, Edina Tokodi's moss art is born as a distinctly outlined work, but the moss continues to grow -- leaving behind a piece that can look either lush or weathered, depending on the elements. She seems to use mainly a stencil technique of applying the moss, often employing negative space and cut-outs.
I admire the irony of her art -- how can you not smile at the sight of Peter Cottontail sitting meekly behind you on a derelict OSB (oriented strand board) eyesore of a wall?
When compared to the other visual messages that often adorn city surfaces, Tokodi's botanical graffiti is an eloquent urban intervention that reintroduces green to the streets and reminds passersby of the presence of nature in, under, and around the hard surfaces of the city.
Photos by Mosstika and Tien Mao