Watch the Documentary Birth of the Sun by Thomas W. Campbell
Birth of the Sun is a 27 minute documentary produced in 2008 about Grady Alexis, a street artist in the East Village who inspired many, struggled to develop a unique vision, and finally died in a street scuffle with an off-duty policeman. True to the kind of hand-made and found-object paintings and sculpture that Grady created, his story is told through the art and music of people who knew and were influenced by him. Grady lived on the streets for years before becoming the artist in residence at El Taller Latino Americano on East 2nd street. The film also documents the recreation of a signature work by Grady, the mural called Birth of the Sun.
Grady moved between worlds of art, music, the streets, cafes, wherever a creative scene was happening. When he lived at El Taller from the mid 1980s until his death he painted and made music with a colorful and creative group of people. He was especially close to Demian and Ira Palombo, the sons of Bernardo Palombo, the director of El Taller. They lived a unique life of art and inspiration.
The musical soundtrack was created by Demian Palombo, who called upon his memories and experiences with Grady to compose and perform a complex and haunting series of original songs and music. Most of the soundtrack was recorded at present-day El Taller, as both multi-track and live performances. Guest musicians who appear in the film include Quiqie Sinesi, Bernardo Palombo, Jose Valdez, Drummer and Victor Hernandez.