As street art becomes more prevalent, more accepted, and discussed more on the public stage, it’s easy to forget that it’s a place where weird things can happen. Street art began its modern life in alleyways, on the sides of abandoned buildings, and under the cover of darkness. It was something that happened in secret and often in small, isolated groups. The artists who started modern street art were often barred from other kinds of then-accepted forms of artistic expression. When they couldn’t have their work in art galleries, they spray painted the sides of buildings. When no one thought spray paint was good enough to create art, they made impressive artistic leaps. And when their content was deemed “too risqué,” they responded with getting weird.
Bizarre Beyond Belief is a website and publication dedicated to keeping the weirdness of street art, design, and artistic expression noticed, discussed, and documented. It embraces the courageous and the bold, the artists who strike out and make something that captures people’s attention for any number of reasons, from the artistic stylings to the strange subject matter. It makes people remember that street art isn’t conventional and can do things that “high culture” art can only dream of.
The website regularly features profiles, interviews, photo galleries, and more of the weird and wonderful things happening in the world. They look beyond street art when looking for the bizarre as well, with sections dedicated to design, photography, and other artistic modes to see what’s truly weird in the world. By doing so, Bizarre Beyond Belief often discovers smaller artists before they break, making it an excellent resource for anyone who wants to stay current with the art world outside of the usual galleries.
Many websites struggle with revenue, but Bizarre Beyond Belief has managed to foster a dedicated and loyal audience that takes pride in their subscriptions. The website is now known for its wonderful merchandise almost as much as its content. The wide variety of apparel, pins, and more help the website stay in business, but it also offers an opportunity for its readers to have a small piece of what the website profiles.
Bizarre Beyond Belief is a website that proves street art, no matter how popular it gets, will always be on the outside. And this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Many of the best artists in the more accepted art galleries are or were street artists, and graffiti has become a major influence in many recent artistic movements. By staying weird and on the outside, street art is able to inject new ideas into the world without the usual gatekeeping and barriers set up to stop them. And with that, our society and our art culture can grow, warp, and continue to catch people off-guard.