What is graffiti in 2014? Today, I have a much different idea than in the late 80′s and 90′s. See, I grew up in flatbush, Brooklyn in an era of breakin crews, graf crews – basically the early days of bboy and hiphop. I looked up to the older bboys because they were really into what they were doing, had a passion that the hoods & would-be crime lords all around me didn’t. Plus, girls were into graf, as a pre-teen boy, that meant a lot. It was an electric time and I was inside of it.
I honor the purity of graffiti and what it means to the dudes who came before me. I was into a “scene”, into chasing allcity fame, into beef, and also into the art. But the word has since shapeshifted for me… New York is full of non NY’ers. Thats cool, gentrification, yeah whatever, but the massive immigration brings with it a new style of street artist who want to paint and wheat paste on the same streets where it all began. Never having really taken my eye off of this sub culture, I watched it change.
I work with pretty cool tools nowadays, 3d printing being the most fun. So I use that, giving new form to the age-old staple, the graf sticker. I custom paint 3d prints of my tag, in the way I envision a full sized piece. as far as i can tell, I’m the world’s first graffiti artist using 3d printing who is actually going out bombing. The dope thing about this fusion is that I can really make things that are more than a tag on a postal shipping label…
One more thing I’d like to note… I spent quite a bit of time playing with different enamels to get my “marbling” technique down. I’ve always been a fan of the turkish art form of Ebru and wanted to figure out a similar wet application of color to PLA and ABS 3D prints. you can see some of the results below. Most were accomplished with 99cent store nail polishes afloat in a container of warm water.
I got myself scanned at the Makerbot store in soho, New York a few days ago. If you’d like to see a bit of street art as psychogeography, check out my other post about it here - and also see this project I worked on with visual artist Cagla Baybura.
While Graffiti is it’s own subculture, born out of expression from a poor part of society when the planets were all aligning in dire ways, I can call graffiti a form of psychogeography without stretching definitions. They do fall under the same umbrella IMO.
So, in my free time, and on my many travels, I’ll be making urban jungles a little more colorful one piece of modern street art at a time.