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The graffiti movement known today has existed for several decades, and it's still going strong. Throughout history graffiti was used by political activists to make statements street gangs to mark territory or by funny guys writing jokes in bathrooms. It wasn't till the late 1960s that graffiti's current identity started to form. In Philadelphia during the mid to late '60s people began to write their nick names all over the city, gaining attention from the community and local press, a few years later the concept made its way to New York City. In the Washington Heights section of Manhattan graffiti writing caught on and in 1971 The New York Times published an article about TAKI 183, a kid from Washington Heights. TAKI wrote his name all over the city, it was a nick name for his given name Demetrius and 183 was the number of the street where he lived. TAKI and his generation of writers started to be noticed by the public and the press.

Through the 70's graffiti writing caught on like wildfire in New York, kids all over the city started to write their names everywhere with markers and spray paint. The subway trains quickly became a rolling platform for the movement and carried their names all over the city. Techniques and methods on how to paint your name were developed and led to bigger and bolder paintings until they filled up entire subway cars. When the 80's arrived, all the standards had been set and the most active generation was about to reap the benefits of artistic foundations established by prior generations and a city in the middle of a financial crisis. New York City was broke and therefore the transit system was poorly maintained. By the early 80's the city and especially the subway trains were covered in graffiti.

In 1981, YAKI KORNBLIT, a Dutch gallerist from Amsterdam, came to New York to look for the most talented graffiti artists. He wanted to present that kind of art in Europe. He thought that it would be like 20 years before when the Pop Art movement was successful promoted in Europe. Yaki found a network of artists and brought them back to Amsterdam where he did shows with them at his Konrblit Gallery. Among them were artists such as DONDI, CRASH, RAMELZEE, ZEPHYR, QUIK, FUTURA2000, LADY PINK, SEEN and BLADE. The exhibitions of their artworks in Yaki's gallery and later in the Museum Boymans van Beuningen were an unbelievable success. The critics and collectors of art talked in positively about graffiti and the artworks sold.

This cultural export from New York had a deep impact with the youth of Amsterdam, they were, and perhaps still are, very insubordinate and around that time Amsterdam already had writing on the streets from the punk movement. With the import of graffiti and the artists from New York, the talented kids from Amsterdam found a new influence. It was the beginning of the modern graffiti movement in Holland and soon the rest of Europe. Graffiti quickly made its way to other Western European cities such as Paris and London and further on to Germany and everywhere else.

HISTORY OF GRAFFITI tells the story of the New York origins and the rise of modern graffiti in Europe from 1983 and beyond. YAKI KORNBLIT and a very limited group of European graffiti pioneers like SHOE (Amsterdam), BANDO (Paris), MODE2 (London), LOOMIT (Munich), HESH (Hamburg) and a few other protagonists will be featured in the movie commenting on a historical base.


Length: 60min

Production: January 2017 - June 2017

Screening: September 2017


RED TOWER FILMS dreht seit 2015 mit der

4K Kamera PXW-FS7 von SONY

RED TOWER FILMS dreht seit 2014 mit der

Kamera A7S von SONY

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