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.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

1980's New York graffiti re-lived: Subway Art history project

Flashback! Ed Koch was Mayor of New York City for nearly a decade during the height of graffiti in the city, 1978-1989. His battle against graffiti on the subway was immortalized in the film "Style Wars," produced by L.A.'s Tony Silver (R.I.P.) and Henry Chalfont.

Stuck in time Two decades later, I read in the New York Times a retro graffiti movement has been spotted near the Prospect Park area of Brooklyn. Whilst Seen (United Artists) has been spending time in Paris, France over the past couple of years it seem fans have taken his infamous "Hand of Doom" whole train (1980) and recreated it at Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn.

"The original work — among those canonized in Henry Chalfant and Martha Cooper’s 1984 landmark photographic history, “Subway Art” — was a token of its troubled urban times, a reference to the Black Sabbath song of the same title with the words flanked by a hooded executioner and a time bomb. The 21st-century version, on closer inspection, turns out to be a bit gentler and a lot more oblique. It reads “Joan of Arc,” and the hatchet man has been replaced by an armored representation of the martyred French saint." New York Times

Graffiti "Slavery" The artists behind these classic tributes are part of a collective called "Slavery" and made up of, predominately, graffiti writers who grew up studying "Subway Art" like many others born too late to see the real deal rolling gallery.

Inspired by another New York artist, Steve Powers, aka ESPO, (whose project brightened up a rundown West Philadelphia commercial district as part of the city’s Mural Arts Program,) the Slavery collective has chosen 50 seminal old-school graffiti murals to recreate and customize as part of a project imaginably called "Subway Art History."

R-E-S-P-E-C-T As Subway Art co-author, Henry Chalfant, says, the "Subway Art History" project is a rare  form of tribute in the world of (New York) graffiti: “I think it’s a wonderful reverse of what usually happens, which is that these people whose shoulders everyone has stood on don’t get any credit,” he said.

Blade (taken from Miss Rosen)
It’s nice the attention guys my age are finally starting to get for our work,” he said. “It kind of amazes me actually. People in their teens and 20s come up to me, and they know every detail of my life story. I’m like, ‘Wow, I don’t even remember dating that girl back in ’72, but this kid here knows all about it.’ ” Blade, graffiti legend

Support and collect The "Joan of Arc" piece will be available as a print from Edition One Hundred, a new online art gallery that sells only 100 limited-edition prints, all signed by the artists. 10% of the profits go to charity.

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