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March 17th, 2013:

FAB Spotlight on Street Art: Be Pleasant – Three Generations of Artists

By placing ourselves into the environment with the paintings, we create a layered effect that distorts reality and offers a kind of real time interaction with the environment which suggests that we are part of the art. – PLEASANT

Greetings, my name is Pleasant…. I  am a visual artist who is currently presenting a selection of my work in a project I have titled: Portable Expressions. In this series… I use static imagery and live interaction to convey a series of ideas. I was in Fort Greene recently performing this art [and] currently in the Nederlands bound for Paris in a few days where I shall appear in a documentary film piece about my new approach to street art and design.

Portable Expressions

These newest images come from Leiden with Pleasant’s Artist assistant, Farah participating in collaboration.

I very much believe in diversity and providing layers of creative content. An alumnus of the New York School of Visual Arts, I also make indirect commentary related to men’s issues and gay rights… in addition to socio-political commentary. Sadly this fact has isolated me in the USA at times. As most recently the so called ‘diverse’ Brooklyn Street Art association refused to cover my work. Their communication with me would be considered hostile at best. Perhaps a little racist too? maybe, I felt it. However despite this kind of treatment and blatant exclusion I continue forward in my work.

Pleasant Promo Shot

Both my father and grandfather were artists and both contributed to the city of Savannah significantly. I have produced a book of the collected murals, paintings and signage of my family titled, ‘PLEASANT Signs’. You can see some of my Dad’s work via his website.  I also present a lecture series titled, Three Generations of Pleasant Art. The book Pleasant Signs has found it’s way to the Collegiate school, School of Visual Arts and Bank Street College’s libraries. My Dad documented life in his art in the south during the civil rights movement from a local perspective. My Dad was a Bahai’ and an advocate for integration and the rights of all people including homosexuals, women and others. He took much abuse during his lifetime as a mixed race Black American artist. To this very day the local (tax-supported) art museum, the Telfair Museum of Art in Savannah refuses to support or acknowledge my father’s art contributions. His collection of paintings are unique and vast and his murals and signage dominate Savannah’s environment, appearing on many of Savannah’s, media promoted, famed historical tourist destinations. Despite this fact, there is little to no mention of my father’s art contributions… I continue as the third generation of Pleasant Artists continuing my family’s art legacy.

Pleasant Signs book produced in collaboration by Designer, Jalal Pleasant and Author, David Pleasant.

My Dad (Willam Pleasant, Jr.) was a Bahai’ and an advocate for integration and the rights of all people including homosexuals, women and others.

The shy Duck who inspired the World to smile – © PLEASANT

Overview of ‘Portable Expressions’

Portable Expressions is an evolution of my Suspended Thoughts installation art series. It continues my work in the development of establishing a static interactive experience for observers of this art. I have presented several versions of this series around the world. Similarly, Portable Expressions will take place (someplace) in New York City, Amsterdam and Paris. February-March 2013. Documentation of this project, including location details as to where observers may publicly see Pleasant art graphics shall be published via my website  and FACEBOOK.

This outdoor art installation consisting of several pieces sometimes suspended by wire, offers viewers an opportunity to become participants. Through multiple modes of interaction, you can independently touch elements and rearrange them in any given pattern. This installation is constructed in a method that integrates with and compliments its host space. Sometimes my ‘suspended’ style artworks have been referred to as “portable graffiti”. This is a result of the stylized art’s ability to enhance a setting without permanently altering it’s environment via creating a layered affect.

This installation uses a mix of fine art painting, graphic and conceptual design and sculptural elements. The host outdoor space serves as a foundation for the canvas. I often begin by planting a pre-rendered graphic design image of my Pleasant Spaceman graphic to represent the optimism of the future and go from there. Other elements include natural and inorganic imagery.

My mission is to engage all, and specifically young people in critical thinking; to question the order and structure of their environment and to consider how they may actualize their own personal understanding of creative expression and their role in defining the environment in which they live.  – Troy Davis, Warming, Corporate Bullshit, dreams and the loss of the old New York. …Dude Where’s my Bodega?   This Sucka ain’t dead yet.  In contrast it isn’t Pleasant art.  …Is it edgy?


b. 19 . 12 . 1974  (Georgia, USA) native Pleasant attended Pratt Institute and is an alumnus of the New York School of Visual Arts. Pleasant is a full-time Fine artist, Installation Artist, Curator, Lecturer and Designer. Pleasant received formal art instruction under the tutelage’s of NYC abstract painter Michael Goldberg, Kenny Scharf and fashion art Illustrator, Jack Potter. And is currently gallery represented along with Artists, Shepard Fairey, BustArt, Inkie, London Police among others. In addition Pleasant is an active published Apple® Developer/Designer. Select collections include, Estate of American Comedian Richard Pryor, Batoto Yetu and the University of Haifa. Pleasant has published appearances with the Nation Magazine, BlackBook Magazine, Nickelodeon Television/MTV Viacom, Het Parool, DeVolkskrant, Woodstock Times (NY)  and The New York Press / Chelsea Clinton News, New York, New York among many others. Pleasant is currently working on publishing his second art book slated for release in late 2013.