Graffiti writing was born in the streets of Philadelphia in the late 1960s. But it was in New York in the early 1970s that it became a full-fledged urban art, gradually taking over the landscape of the city, from its walls to its subway cars. In these years when this art form was emerging, graffiti pioneers laid its foundations through the constant game they played with the twenty-six letters of the alphabet, which they distorted and highlighted in the tags that they painted on walls. In the first section of this book, Woshe recounts the incredible story of the birth of this culture. He then offers us a detailed examination of the twenty-six letters of the alphabet, their structure and the ways in which graffiti writers have made them evolve. This study is enriched with a wealth of illustrations and examples of the customisations that artists add to their letters. At the end of the volume, ten of the international scene’s most talented graffiti creators answer Woshe’s questions about matters that include their practice, their relationship with letters and their backgrounds.
Interviews with: BATES (Copenhague, Denmark); DARCO (Paris, France); DEMS (Elche, Spain); GESER (Connecticut USA); JURNE (Oakland, CA,USA); LOKISS (Paris, France); SERCH (Zwolle, The Netherlands); SWET (Copenhague, Denmark); SYE (New Yor, NY,USA); ZOER (Grasse, France).
This is a writing manual, an inspiring collection of ideas and a beautiful book on the world of graffiti, but above all it is a declaration of love for this culture that mixes urban performance and mastery of letters. It includes a map of New York with the sites where the most important graffiti are located.
Born in 1972 in Val-de-Marne (France), Woshe discovered his first graffiti at the age of 14 by taking the train. Fascinated by these clandestine paintings that appropriate urban greyness, using the letter as a subject for experimentation, he begins to sketch his first drawings. Over time and encounters, he discovers a true culture, initiated by pioneers, full of codes and positive values in which he recognises himself. For 30 years now, he has relentlessly traced the alphabetical material, juggling with styles and answering the most diverse orders. Considered a letter specialist, Woshe is also the author of two best-selling books on the subject.
Published June 2019 by Promopress
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