End of the world - in 'boring' Haifa


The cartoon world of a post-apocalyptic Haifa where radioactive hogs eat green-skinned people and are ruled by a lizard queen named Olga, took over a Shoreditch studio this week.

The graffiti and sculpture show, Crazy Eye Hotel, inspired by '70s graphic novels, was the first major exhibition in Europe by Haifa street art collective, Broken Fingaz Crew. The exhibition at the Truman Brewery, close to Brick Lane, was run in conjunction with the SOAS Centre for Jewish Culture and No Way creative agency.

It is a side to Israeli life most people do not associate with the country, said the artists, in London for the launch. Kip, one of the four collaborators, said: "Haifa is a boring city, with many old people and not much to do. In the images, it's shown as a ghost town."

The graffiti group started working together in 2001. But, Kip said, they always had ambitions to create something more. "We work together - it's one hand moved by four people".

The group has now had major exhibitions in Tel Aviv and Haifa. The London space is dominated by a 3D model of a city, painted in neon, Aztec-inspired shapes with Hebrew inscriptions. Behind, painted on the wall, a mushroom cloud rises. "We do use the end-of-the world motif a lot," one of the collective smiled. "But we never tell you who it is that caused it."

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