To quickly address all the internetland hype and drama between bombers, pasters, lovers, and haters, stemming from the post on WK Interact in Miami… lets get some basic facts straight.
I’m not here to speak about the “rules” of the street.
Personally I do not care.
Let’s talk about more interesting things like evolution, hypocrisy, and artistic merit.
When I was twelve years old I used to tag up everything I could find with “Klown.” I was twelve.
At some point grown men need to stop writing on things.
Or if you must, at least step up your game a little.
Graffiti isn’t a new concept. It has been found on the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Pompeii.
To address some of the comments left on this site, yes, bombers started in the Bronx in the eighties… but in no way does this credit you as being O.G.’s with preferential treatment in the street. It’s not like you are from Pompeii, know what I mean?
To add, this idea that bomb graffiti some how has “historical” relevance over wheat pasters is absurd. Let’s talk about evolution. After reading the comments its important to me that I share with you that wheat paste has been around for a very long time. As a matter of fact, it was once the only way for the common man to express himself. Wheat paste gave a voice to the voiceless. The ingredients are simple and inexpensive. The message can be profound. This has evolved into an animal of its own, but it is evolution, you know… (the thing that gives bombers that opposable thumb that lets them hold that aerosol can) that is to credit for wheat paste. And wheat paste came first.
(Notice the pleasant two inch borders providing room for everybody. Team work kids! Okay, not to contradict myself but the friendliness amongst wheat pasters here makes me want to puke a little.)
Now, in regards to the closed mindedness of the community of bombers. The initial explosion of bomb graffiti in the eighties that swamped New York City was the psychological result of daily turmoil, excess, and anxiety that once occurred in this concrete jungle so many of us call home. Puerto Rican kids in the Bronx suddenly had the same power, notoriety, and relevance as the rich and powerful neighbors that they crammed into the subways with. Again, it is a voice for the voiceless.
What is fascinating is that the bombers of 2008 no longer live in this same New York. Rather than moving on and growing together in a city better equipped (garbage men aren’t on strike these days) this community continues to gravitate towards grabbing up land and property like prisoners and blocking out the voices of others. Isn’t that contrary to what this whole subconscious movement was about in the first place?
Let me also say that as someone that documents the street, what you see on this site under “New York Streets” is the cream of the crop. Most everything on the street is pretty boring to me. That goes for wheat pasters too. The ability for an image to be captivating enough to photograph is the same terrain that curators, appraisers, and buyers use for evaluating art. This is called “merit”. And as far as merit is concerned, most street artists far outweigh the juvenile nature of most bomb graffiti. That is why you will mostly see wheat pasters and stencil artists on this website. If you like bomb graffiti then go to Bombin Magazine’s website. I go there a lot myself.
Lastly, I just want to reiterate that our world is at war. We are witnessing the emergence of a president that knows all of his ABC’s… and yet, fools are still walking around like cavemen that missed the evolution train. Here is a picture of a piece I did for Art Basel in Miami in 2007.
The installation was an attempt to find a way to express the spirituality that exists in new urbanism; a spirituality that runs through me as a consumer. Built on found items including garbage on the street and torn pieces of wheat pasted posters, the objects were collaged into mixed media installations and exist as illustrations of socio economic issues. By using collage, each piece explores the possibility of finding spirituality in a contemporary urban environment through the repurposing of found items. Along each cut of paper is an entire life of the object. Branded, marketed, discarded, paper becomes trash, once as advertisement, and now as art. The ultimate result of each piece is a reincarnation, or a third generation of the object, sampled like in hip hop, reconnected like energy, the art becomes a reconciliation of various elements into a narrative. Once inert garbage is now breathing life.
Look how Gaia gets bombed over and simply comes back and pastes another head like a champ. Rather than just going over the bomber, his actions only add a new context, an energy, an atmosphere that is an ongoing narrative. This is what draws me to street art, not petty feuds.