David Was Here Again

Visit David at www.instagram.com/David_Was_Here_Again or https://www.facebook.com/groups/davidwashereagain. Let us know if you have some of David’s art and we’ll publish it.

June 3

The finishing touches have been added to these two murals. Up next for David is a mural at a private residence. Stay tuned for photos.

May 31

Left at Rosemont Train Station, February 2019


May 29

Icons from the 90s. Corn, Pizza, Gum


May 28

When David travels, he often brings along some art in his carry-on bag. This painting was left in Austria!


May 24

Here is the 2nd of two murals David has been working on this month at Wallingford Elementary School. Seems like a message that grown-ups could heed as well!


May 23

First day of the Devon Horse Show today. To the video!

May 22

Philadelphia Art Museum steps, circa 1995.


May 21

imageThe Shipley School Kindness Generation service group visited Surrey Services for Seniors last Friday to work on Cards for Hospitalized Kids. They work together with seniors to create positive messages and works of art to share with the broader community. This year, they’ve created buttons, kindness rocks and signs.


May 19

David found a bunch of PVC pipe in the trash so he decided to wrap it with trash to make it a sculptural wall hanging. Made of cloth, plastic and non-recyclable “stuff.”









May 18

A drawing shared with David by a student at Wallingford Elementary!

drawing katie and mr. G

May 17









More from David and the students at Wallingford Elementary School. Let us know if you’d like David to come to your school or community group!


May 16

Inspiring work from the students at Wallingford Elementary School. David is working with them to create ~1,000 buttons with powerful messages this week.  Let us know if you’d like David to come to your school or community group!


May 15

Decided to go to the video today. Dinosaurs! Check it out,


May 14

David is Artist-In-Residence during May at Wallingford School District. Below is an example of one of the 500+ buttons students have already made. More than 400 to go.


May 13

David will be Artist-In-Residence at Wallingford School District all this week sharing his positive message. He has been commissioned to paint two huge murals, 9 1/2 feet x 7 feet. He’s just getting started.









May 12

First Fridays in the mid-Nineties. Local artists found this cyclone fence surrounding a pit on 2nd between Race and Arch Streets and created a weekly show. David sold his work on the streets for several years, including this piece sold to a German tourist pictured here.


May 11

David’s Mayan and Incan heritage compels him to use imagery and symbolism from these cultures. Pictured here is a high priestess costume.



May 10

What do you think this is? Nothing other than a directors chair placed upside down and wrapped in canvas of course! Rope keep the canvas in place and then David painted over the rope. Left at the corner of Route 30 and Bridge in Berwyn, PA.


May 9

Flashback to April 11 and May 1 postings. Phone booths in the ’90s were great because they offered shelter and, at the time, were used a lot. #ThrowbackThursday #TBT


May 8

Ardmore Train Station. Screw-gunned to empty advertising panels. Stripped the screws so that they’d stay awhile.


May 7

Many of David’s pieces are left at train stations, taped over advertisements.


May 6

Terry-cloth towel stretched on frame. Rough texture.


May 5

Parents old bedspread. Left at 3rd and Arch in front of an abandoned building inthe mid 90s. Vinyl on one side, cloth on the other. Not so easy to paint on!


May 4

One of our favorites, “Don’t Let The Turkeys Get You Down.” And some days, they’re all turkeys. Left 2/15/19 at Septa Ardmore High Speed Line Station.

May 2

These beauties were left outside Bella Italia Pizza at Ardmore bus stop in February 2019. Do you have them? Send us a picture.









May 1


Philadelphia Art Museum, mid 1990s – A security officer asked what David was doing, he said he was taking pictures of art he found.









April 30, 2019

Here’s David!!!

David Was Here Again! David Gerbstadt and Marc Balcer bring a group of students from The Shipley School to Surrey Services in Devon for a social art project each month. The group, called Kindness Generation, creates and shares their work in a fun, social setting. Here are some photos from our April visit. Pieces were left around the facility with a message on the back inviting them to take the art home and spread its message.





































April 29, 2019

This piece was created using a recycled door with doorknob. Because he has dyslexia, David spells phonetically.


April 28, 2019

City of Brotherly Love


April 26, 2019

Today’s post is international! David left this piece in Mexico City in 2000. His work has been found in Poland, Ireland, and around the world.


April 25, 2019

Does remembering snow count as a #ThrowbackThursday. Snow, forks and footprints.


April 24, 2019

Juxtaposition. Left behind an old house near a bridge on Crabby Creek in Berwyn.


April 23, 2019

Here’s one of the earliest signs, placed where Route 202 meets Route 252 in Devon/Berwyn. More Fish! (see April 15)


April 22, 2019

IMG_2668David’s tight knit community of Berwyn still has a village feel. The Berwyn Fire Company is a pillar of the community, offering security and safety as well as opportunities to gather and be heard (Saturdays at 10am, Thursdays at 7pm). Pictured above is Career Lieutenant Christopher MacDonald of Berwyn Fire Company with one of David’s pieces.



April 21, 2019

Happy Easter! David is selling this beautiful 16×24 acryllic on wood painting for $250. Email marc@center4selfcare.com for payment and details.


April 20, 2019

David left this piece at the Villanova SEPTA station on February 16. One of our favorites. If you’ve seen it, let us know and send us a picture!


April 19, 2019

David believes that art should be accessible to everyone.


April 18, 2019

Look what ICHOOSEGRAY found! Send us pictures of you with the David Gerbstadt art that you have found!


April 17, 2019

David’s mom wasn’t so happy when she discovered he had been giving away dozens and dozens of his piece. David told here, “I don’t care, I’m painting on trash!” This one, an early monster from 1994, was constructed using found skid pallets hammered together and paint that people gave him. Do you have this piece? Let us know and send us a photo!


April 16, 2019

A little socio-political commentary the day after tax day.

Screen Shot 2019-04-15 at 3.56.33 PM

April 15, 2019

In honor of the Boston Marathon, we thought we’d share a story of David’s exploits at the Boston Marathon years ago.




April 13 and 14, 2019

57006248_10161441553065214_5098639038101848064_nDavid’s revolutionary approach to art is evidenced by creative methods of distribution. As you pull up to his home, you’ll find an upcycled newspaper box that has been transformed into a “pay what you want for my art” distribution site (see picture above). Just deposit money into the slot and lift the handle to find art inside.









April 12, 2019

Almost all of David’s materials and supplies are recycled or donated. As such, he doesn’t like to cut or otherwise remove parts of his canvases like this piece of plywood with wire for hanging.


April 11, 2019

Anyone know what this is? A payphone. In this photo, David’s father makes a call with a fish on the ledge of the payphone in 2000.


April 10, 2019









David believes that art should be available to everyone. As part of The Shipley School’s Impact Week, middle schoolers colored in templates from David, pasted them to plywood and shared them with someone. #BeKind #YouAreLoved


April 9, 2019

Here’s David presenting to an Art class at Tredyffrin Middle School twenty years ago. Stay tuned for photos from an amazing visit to The Shipley School where David is presenting today.


April 8, 2019

David and his helpers used a screw gun with stripped screws to display work on unused advertising boards at the Ardmore train station. The pieces stayed up for weeks. Do you have this one?


April 7, 2019

David offers packs of Be Kind buttons for only $1 per button plus $5 shipping on orders <250. No order too big or small. To order, send payment with contact information via paypal.me/davidgerbstadt or venmo.com/Center4SelfCare.


April 6, 2019

“Things Are Just Things” – David’s car outside Tredyffrin-Easttown Middle School for an art presentation to students in the mid 90s.


April 5, 2019

This is one of the original signs from the mid ’90s. Listen to the story of Kyle’s Grandpa and the Red Car at the 8:18-9:33 minute mark of our most recent podcast, https://soundcloud.com/user-211379348/david-was-here-again-project-launch, also available on iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/david-was-here-again-project-launch/id1073971853?i=1000433825230&mt=2.


April 4, 2019

This photo from 1993 shows David at his first art show with his mother. At the bottom right, you’ll see his first “monster,” derived from imagery of ancient Mayan and Incan traditions. This one was “furry” and he “just scribbled it” using oil stick and pen on cardboard. Do you have a monster piece? Let us know and send us a photo!


April 3, 2019

This piece declaring “Never Give Up” was left in Narbeth, PA in February, 2019 on Haverford Avenue near the Narberth train station. Do you have this piece? Let us know and send us a photo!


April 2, 2019


In 1998, David painted shipping envelopes and staple-gunned them to telephone poles. Guess what was in the package? He included a hand-drawn t-shirt! David says, “That’s crazy!” This piece was left in Philadelphia. Do you have this piece or one of his t-shirts? Let us know and send us a photo!

April 1, 2019

Untitled-681Center For Self-Care is proud to partner with our friend David Gerbstadt for a new project, Dave Was Here Again. David is a Berwyn-based artist who believes that art is for everyone. David’s story is one of radical self-care through the expression of his art and radical connection through how he shares it.


David leaves his art in public places. Over time, he has left well over 5,000 pieces across the Philadelphia area and the world! A photo, bio and note on the back allows finders to send him messages and photos. With our new project, we hope to find some of these pieces and see where they’ve gone.  If you’ve got one, let us know.

We invite you to listen to our latest podcast where David and Marc describe the project including stories of some of the art he has left including the “You Are Beautiful” sign that graces the cover of this post. Amazingly, the family that found this sign ran in to David later the same day over an hour away! Listen to this and more:

Over the next 100 days, we’ll be posting photos, stories and videos on instagram, https://www.instagram.com/David_Was_Here_Again/. Please follow us and help us track the stories and his works as they circle the globe. Below, you’ll find a video of a recent art