Stevio...LA LA Lovin' It?

I'm British-born Chinese from Bristol, UK. I’m LA-based. I’m a hip hop aficionado. After 15 years in London I moved to LA to pursue a new career and outlook on life.

Back in the 80s I was a DJ. In the 90s I contributed to the world's first street style exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert Museum. In 2011, I had my first interviews published. Today, I’m keeping busy with music, art, photos and writing.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Graffiti Intellectualized...Norman Mailer RIP

I was online at Complex mag's blog and saw the news that Norman Mailer, Pulitzer-prize author, journalist and founder of the Village Voice passed away today.

I must admit I don't read much, but I do remember that Mailer wrote the foreword to a classic (rare) oversized book called "The Faith of Graffiti". It has full of color photos by Mervyn Kurlansky and Jon Naar that capture the early, crude graffiti tags and pieces that terrorized NYC’s subway trains in the 70-80s. Here are some excerpts and pics from the book.

"The notoriously tough guy author intellectualized the graffiti movement in its early beginnings—’Faith’ was published in 1974—when hand styles were still being developed and most of the letters were very primitive. Mailer was fascinated by the art form, writing, “What a quintessential marriage of cool and style to write your name in giant separate living letters, large as animals, lythe as snakes, mysterious as Arabic and Chinese curls of alphabet.”

“Slum populations chilled on one side by the bleakness of modern design, and brain-cooked on the other by comic strips and TV ads with zooming letters, even brain-cooked by politicians whose ego is a virtue - I am here to help my nation - brained by the big beautiful numbers on the yard markers on football fields, by the whip of the capital letters in the names of products, and gut-picked by the sound of rock and roll screaming up into the voodoo of the firmament with the shriek of the performer’s insides coiling like neon letters in the blue satanic light, yes, all the excrescence of the highways and the fluorescent wonderlands of every Las Vegas sign frying through the Iowa and New Jersey night, all the stomach-tightening nitty-gritty of trying to learn how to spell was in the writing, every assault on the psyche as the trains came slamming in.” -Norman Mailer

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