BLADE – SWINGING LETTERS (Subway Art Centerfold)

Mixed media on US Priority Mail stickers
55  x 11 cm, 2020

Series of 5 pieces / Each one is a unique series of the same subject

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Artist info


Steven Ogburn, was born in New York in 1957, grew up in the Bronx, where the signature BLADE 70s began making graffiti, participating in the birth of a cultural movement, the Writing, which in time would become a fundamental piece of history contemporary art. BLADE between 1972 and 1984 he painted more than 5,000 trains, which cross with his name and his style throughout New York City, earning it the title of King of Graff among his friends and peers. Its crew of belonging is the TC5, stands for The Crazy 5, present mainly on lines 2 and 5 of the metro, which pass in neighborhoods like: Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan and Central Park. In 1981 he took part in the show BLADE New York / New Wave to the PS1 Gallery in New York, which at the time was not the contemporary museum today, but a space occupied self-managed. The event went down in history for the participation of key artists of contemporary art, names like JM Basquiat, Keith Haring, Dondi, Seen, Lee Quinones and many others. Subsequently BLADE also exposes the Fun Gallery in Manhattan. In 1984, BLADE is among the protagonists of Subway Art, famous catalog that boasts as the two authors photojournalist Martha Cooper and Henry Chalfant, who undertook a genuine exploration, faithful and thorough about these new heroes of the road, precursors of a cultural movement completely revolutionary in its mode of expression, now world famous cult text about the origins of Writing. Since the late 90s, BLADE with his work crosses the threshold of the museum circuit from New York via Australia, California, France, Denmark, Holland. BLADE has exhibited in the exhibition Art In The Streets, held in the spaces of the MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles) in 2011.

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Signed by the artist.

These new works by the “King of Graf” are reproductions of pieces made on NYC trains by the artist in 1980 at the age of 23, and which were then made famous all over the world thanks to the photos of Martha Cooper and Henry Chalfant, which are collected in the book Subway Art, also known as the “bible” of graffiti and which marked the history of this artistic movement.

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