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Thread: Graffiti

  1. #181
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    If you read the article it seems that the DA will have a very hard time proving that Mr. Maridueña is actually the person responsible for the recent tags on the subway cars.

  2. #182

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    I did read the article. As the old courtroom expression goes, "Throw enough stuff against the wall and something will stick."

    Or perhaps in this case the expression should go, "Paint enough walls--especially if they're not your own--and you will paint yourself into a corner."

  3. #183
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Not if you haven't painted on said walls for 10+ years ...

  4. #184

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    Oh, I'm sure this vaunted artist is as pure as the driven snow.

    Even if he's cleared it will be worth having Ecko--that great champion of free speech--cough up a few hundred thousand in legal fees.

  5. #185
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    Throw the book at him.
    Or the train.

  6. #186

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    New face of vandalism?

    By Gersh Kuntzman
    The Brooklyn Paper



    The Brooklyn Paper / Julie Rosenberg
    Six-year-old Natalie Shea got a threatening letter from the city demanding
    the removal of “graffiti” she drew with chalk — with chalk!?— on her front step.
    Here, Shea shows her defiance to the warning letter by creating a new work
    with the supposedly illegal medium.



    The Brooklyn Paper / Julie Rosenberg
    Natalie Shea with her warning letter and the alleged graffiti.



    A 6-year-old Park Slope girl is facing a $300 fine from the city for doing what city kids have been doing for decades: drawing a pretty picture with common sidewalk chalk.

    Obviously not all of Natalie Shea’s 10th Street neighbors thought her blue chalk splotch was her best work — a neighbor called 311 to report the “graffiti,” and the Department of Sanitation quickly sent a standard letter to Natalie’s mom, Jen Pepperman.

    Can somebody stop these bureaucrats before they Kafka again?

    “PLEASE REMOVE THE GRAFFITI FROM YOUR PROPERTY,” the Sanitation Department warning letter read. “FAILURE TO COMPLY … MAY RESULT IN ENFORCEMENT ACTION AGAINST YOU.”

    Since when is a kid’s chalk drawing “graffiti”? Since the City Council passed local law 111 in 2005, which defined “graffiti” as “any letter, word, name, number, symbol, slogan, message, drawing, picture, writing … that is drawn, painted, chiseled, scratched, or etched on a commercial building or residential building.”

    In other words, Natalie Shea is not an artistic little girl, but a graffiti scofflaw?

    No. The law goes on to say that the scribbles can only be called “graffiti” if they are “not consented to by the owner of the commercial building or residential building.” But how could the 311 caller possibly be expected to know if Natalie had her mom’s consent to use chalk on her own front stoop?

    “He could have just asked!” Pepperman said. “This whole thing is ridiculous. Admittedly, this drawing was not her best work — she usually sticks to cheerful scenes, not abstracts, frankly — but to send a warning letter like that is outrageous.”

    Pepperman ticked off any number of daily insults to common decency on her block, including (but not limited to) dog poop, garbage from ill-kept homes, and noise from car alarms. But Sanitation didn’t get a 311 call about those indignities. It got a call about a 6-year-old’s drawing.

    “The report came in as ‘graffiti,’ and, as you know, the city is trying to crack down on graffiti on private property,” said agency spokeswoman Cathy Dawkins.

    “It’s a standard warning letter,” added Dawkins. “The property owner has 45 days to remove it or ask the city to remove it. We’ll inspect after that, and if the graffiti is still there, the property owner has another 60 days before we’ll write a summons.”

    For sidewalk chalk that would dissolve at the first rain? Dawkins said the law is on her agency’s side.

    “The instrument used — whether it’s paint or chalk — does not matter,” she said.

    But if Dawkins is right, than the city has just criminalized hopscotch or drawing arrows to point neighbors towards a stoop sale down the block — as long as a neighbor calls 311 to complain.


    In reality, chalkers have little reason to start using invisible ink. The city’s pre-eminent sidewalk chalk illustrator, Ellis Gallagher, says he’s outlining street furniture and other objects for years and never been arrested.

    “Cops stop me all the time when they see me drawing on the sidewalk, but once they see it’s just chalk, they always let me go,” said Gallagher, a Carroll Gardens resident (see his work at www.myspace.com/ellis_gee).

    Gallagher believes that, despite local law 111, drawing in chalk is not illegal. But a call to the NYPD revealed that there’s a lot of gray area.

    “According the New York penal law, graffiti is the etching, painting, covering, drawing or otherwise placing of a mark upon public or private property with intent to damage such property,” said an NYPD spokesman.

    When pressed to define “intent” or, for that matter, “damage,” the spokesman added: “If it can be washed away, it’s not graffiti, clearly, but it still could be criminal mischief. If I cover your car with mustard, that’s not graffiti, but it’s also not legal.”

    Pepperman is holding firm that her daughter is a pretty artist and not a petty criminal.

    And for his part, Natalie’s father, George Shea, hoped that his daughter wouldn’t learn the wrong lesson from her “graffiti” crime wave.

    “I do love that kid,” Shea said, “but I wish she would stop capping my tags.”

    ©2007 The Brooklyn Paper

  7. #187

    Default Graffiti free Brooklyn.

    Welcome to Brighton Beach.
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  8. #188
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    That kid really gets around!!!!!

  9. #189

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    Scratching Out Etching Acid

    by Courtney Gross
    May 7, 2009

    Carving out another obstacle for graffiti "vandals," the City Council approved legislation Wednesday that requires merchants who sell etching acid to keep purchasers' personal information for a year.

    Its effects apparent on storefront windows and bus station vestibules, etching acid has become the "most destructive" of graffiti tools, said the bill's sponsor, Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. Approved by a vote of 49 to 2, the legislation will fine store owners who fail to take down a buyer's name, address, type of identification, amount of acid bought and the date of purchases.

    Also Wednesday, the City Council unanimously approved a bill to survey the city's wetlands and then create a preservation and development plan for them.

    Another Graffiti Regulation

    A common tool in art and construction, etching acid is a corrosive material used to carve out designs on glass or finish concrete surfaces. In New York City, an individual must be 21 years old to purchase etching acid, which can be found at art and hardware stores.

    More recently, said the bill's supporters, it also has been used to deface public property. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority spends $11 million annually to replace windows scarred by etching acid, according to the City Council.

    Officials estimate it can cost a storeowner $1,000 to replace a storefront window that has been etched and become a victim of "scratchiti."

    "It destroys everything it touches, burns right down to the bone," said Vallone. His bill, he said, "will make vandals think twice."

    To curb some of the vandalism, the legislation (Intro 320-A) would require personal identification be checked by the retailer and kept on file for a year. After a year, the information would be shredded, said Council Speaker Christine Quinn.

    Keeping the personal information on file will act as a deterrent, said Quinn, but it also serves as a tool for law enforcement if they see scratchiti incidents skyrocket in certain areas. Police can then go to neighborhood retailers and determine who has been purchasing the product.

    Retailers and buyers will be fined between $100 and $250 for violating the legislation.

    The mayor is expected to sign the bill. Councilmembers Melissa Mark Viverito and Charles Barron voted against the measure. Barron, who called the bill "an intrusion into the lives of artists," said the city should consider more creative proposals, like community murals, to stop graffiti.

    "We cannot turn this into a police state to stop graffiti," said Barron.

    The New York Civil Liberties Union agrees. Robert Perry, the group's legislative director, said local retailers cannot be charged with safeguarding the personal information of consumers. That, he said, is not how to stop vandalism.

    "If you want to prevent subway graffiti, prosecute the offenders," said Perry. "This is not a government agency like the DMV. You're talking about a retailer who is going to be collecting this information."

    When asked if the civil liberties union would take the legislation to court, a spokesperson said the group would explore all of its options and monitor the law's enforcement.

    The regulation of etching acid is the latest in a long history of anti-graffiti measures at the City Council, some of which have caught the attention of civil rights advocates and courts. Vallone, a notorious graffiti opponent, had tried to require permits for etching acid in the original version of the bill.

    In the past, he also has attempted to ban the possession of wide-tipped markers and etching acid by those under 21. A federal court struck down the ban, and the legislation was later retooled to provide exemptions for artists and students.

    http://www.gothamgazette.com/article...90507/203/2905

  10. #190
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Not a tool used by much of anyone with artistic intent -- at least not when used on the streets or in the subway.

    Good riddance. Hope this does the trick to eradicate the ugly scrawlings.

  11. #191
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    ^^ Hopefully it will, but there will likely be a way around it.

    The line from the Civil Liberties Union gave me a laugh though. Prosecute the offenders? What are they going to do put them in jail for 20 years or something? lol

  12. #192
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    The mayor is expected to sign the bill. Councilmembers Melissa Mark Viverito and Charles Barron voted against the measure. Barron, who called the bill "an intrusion into the lives of artists," said the city should consider more creative proposals, like community murals, to stop graffiti.

    Um, yeah.

    Sure. I am sure a 16 year old on the subway with some etching acid is going to think twice about tagging a window because his community is going to paint a mural on the local HS wall...


    Oh, ram? The easiest way to stop most of these things is simply charge the replacement cost to the offender. That also includes prosecution fees/etc.

    You charge someone $500/$1000 for etching, that will discourage many of them.


    The only other thing I can think of is requiring tagging agents to be placed in the etching acid by the manufacturer for different batches. This would at least make it easier to see where (and possibly when ) something was bought.....

  13. #193
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Thumbs up One for our side!

    From Curbed -

    We are surprised it lasted as long as it did. Marc Ecko's ill-thought-out Chelsea boutique Marc Ecko Cut & Sew is done. This comes after Ecko closed down his Gramercy warehouse, and walked away from a space in Times Square that he had been paying rent on for four and a half years. The final nail in the coffin may have been the location, the down economy, Ecko's rumored bankruptcy or a combo of all three. One thing is for sure: the outlook is not good for Ecko's empire.

  14. #194
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    June 27, 2009

    Vandals Sully an Ode to East Harlem


    By DAVID GONZALEZ


    ART UNDER ATTACK A four-story mural at 104th Street and Lexington Avenue from the 1970s features real-life residents. This month, graffiti vandals struck.

    The walls of East Harlem can speak. Dozens of colorful murals line the narrow streets and wide avenues, celebrating pleneros and poets, rumberos and revolutionaries. Defying gentrification, their dazzling colors brighten sun-starved stretches and declare that the neighborhood’s residents refuse to budge.

    “We have a special flavor in our community because of our murals,” said Carmen Vasquez, a longtime resident. “Our history and culture is there. They’re a way of saying who we are and where we’re going. Everything has a meaning.”

    Lamentably so. Ms. Vasquez was dressed in black, the reason for her mourning evident behind her — huge bubble letters, recklessly slathered across the “The Spirit of East Harlem,” a four-story landmark by Hank Prussing that has graced the southeast corner of East 104th Street and Lexington Avenue since 1978.

    The vandalism happened about two weeks ago, said Ms. Vasquez, the deputy executive director of Hope Community, a neighborhood housing and social services group that commissioned the mural. People have always respected the towering piece, which is a collage of real people from the neighborhood depicted playing music or dominoes, or relaxing on stoops.

    “How could anyone feel they could come in and destroy this?” she said.

    “We have built this up over so many years. It took us so long to get here.”

    The mural’s celebration of everyday life and real people makes it a singular work, said Jane Weissman, a muralist and an author of “On the Wall: Four Decades of Community Murals in New York City.”

    “Until then, murals in New York had historical figures, if they had any recognizable figures at all,” she said. “This was the first time that a mural about a neighborhood, because it’s a celebration of a neighborhood, had people who were from there. Everybody in that mural was recognizable.”

    Mr. Prussing photographed local characters before he started painting. Originally, the piece was going to cover only the upper part of the apartment building, but a grant let him expand it. The upper parts of the mural feature people — and famous logos for New York cultural touchstones like The Daily News and the salsa band Conjunto Libre, among others — and the lower part is an abstract mix of color, lines and letters.

    “The whole concept was to make it interactive,” said Mr. Prussing. “I anticipated there would be graffiti which people would add in keeping with the collagelike look. But not much ever happened because people respected it.”

    Not that others hadn’t tried some stunts over the years. “There was a woman I painted who didn’t like it because her friends said she looked fat,” he recalled. “She got somebody to go up with a ladder and paint her face out. She didn’t want to hurt it too much, so she used flesh-colored paint. We figured out who did it pretty quickly.”

    Local activists have asked politicians and city officials for donations of paint and funds to restore the work as quickly as possible. They also hope to hold a community forum to educate young people on the importance of respecting the area’s many murals, which they say is the only guarantee of protection for public art.

    The vandals who tagged the mural have not been found, so no one knows why they dared deface it. But other muralists said that these acts tend to happen when young graffiti writers want to become infamous as quickly as possible. Murals by more traditional brush-wielding artists may be more vulnerable than works by graffiti artists, said Hector Nazario, who paints under the name Nicer with Tats Cru, a Bronx-based group that paints murals around the city. He said his graffiti murals were usually immune to defacing because vandals knew they might run into him. The letters may be big, but the circle is small. Word travels fast.

    “Remember that scene in ‘Get Shorty’ where John Travolta is waiting in the living room with the TV on?” he said. “The last thing this kid wants is to get home and see us there having coffee with his mother when our intention is to yoke them up. That’s the scenario, us waiting for you, like ‘Get Shorty.’ ”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/27/ny...l?ref=nyregion

  15. #195
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    From Crains -

    Ecko puts his HQ on market

    Urbanwear hotshot's appeal wears thin as youths trade down

    By Adrianne Pasquarelli
    [+] THREADBARE: Marc Ecko's empire declines Photo by AP Images
    Filed Under :

    Top Stories



    The large bronze rhinoceros statues grazing inside hip-hop clothing designer Marc Ecko's massive 275,000-square-foot headquarters on West 23rd Street may soon be out of a home. The entire space, which costs more than $9 million a year and includes a half-size basketball court, is now on the market, according to the site's leasing agent, FirstService Williams.
    The clock is ticking for Mr. Ecko, who is desperately trying to raise enough capital to pay off Marc Ecko Enterprises' debts. In June, Ecko sold its watch trademarks to Timex Group, the former licensee, and subsequently unloaded its Avirex young men's brand to Kids Headquarters.

    Mr. Ecko is the latest casualty of the once-booming $4 billion urban wear business. The sector is morphing away from its baggy, logo-threaded beginnings into a cleaner, more mainstream look available at mass-market retailers ranging from Forever 21 to Levi's Stores. In addition to facing increased competition, the market is suffering as its base of fickle young consumers shies away from expensive labels and seeks bargains.
    “The urban kid is not loyal to any brand or any store,” says Tim Bess, a men's fashion analyst at retail consultancy The Doneger Group. With less money to spend, the streetwear consumer is more likely to buy an inexpensive $19.99 hoodie at Aéropostale than a $68 graphic hooded sweatshirt from Marc Ecko.
    Indeed, Aéropostale is one of the few retailers that is thriving; it posted a 12% rise in June same-store sales. In contrast, many urban retailers are getting hit by the trade-down.

    Buyer's changing tastes
    Joe Nadav, owner of Philadelphia-based hip-hop apparel chain City Blue, has had to close three locations in the past year due to slow sales.

    “In New York, they don't want as much urban and that big, fancy label,” Mr. Nadav says. “It's a much cleaner look.”
    Unlike Mr. Nadav, Mr. Ecko has problems that go beyond the altered shopping habits of the streetwear consumer. The company is drowning in a reported $170 million in debt, owed to creditor CIT Group and manufacturer Li & Fung USA.
    After the New Jersey native founded his brand in 1993, he quickly expanded it into a Marc Ecko Enterprises empire, eventually moving beyond apparel and accessories into magazine publishing and video gaming. He continued to scoop up brand after brand and open store after store. In 2006, the apogee of Ecko's high times, management reported annual retail sales of about $1.5 billion.
    In the past few months, Ecko has made other moves to raise capital to cover its debts. It has put its lavish, multifloor West 23rd Street headquarters up for lease, sold brand extensions and closed stores.
    Unraveling empire
    Critics rate Mr. Ecko's situation as dire and expect the designer to continue selling off divisions during his restructuring. “He was overexposed in thinking that the brand has an unlimited shelf life,” says Michael Londrigan, chair of fashion merchandising at the Laboratory Institute of Merchandising. “But like most of these brands, they need to retrench and look at changing their product mix.”

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