Category Archives: Interviews

Métro memories

In Paris they take graffiti seriously. Just walking around the French capital leaves a certain kind of tourist full of admiration albeit for the hardcore damage rather than the usual attraction of towering ironwork. In particular the technique of ‘punitions’ whereby a train panel is covered with repetitions of a tag, rather than a larger piece, fires the imagination. Travelling around the city on the métro and the eye is drawn to another type of tagging in the form of the numerous abrasive marks scratched into the shiny metal doors of the carriage interiors. Hidden in plain sight most passengers must barely notice these colourless tags but a new publication MF.67D: Ligne 12 sets out to document some of those that can be found on the twelfth line of the subterranean transport system. 

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Nationalist muralism in contemporary Poland

Having reviewed Wojciech Wilczyk’s work in the past the Graffiti Review were pleased to catch up and ask the photographer about his newest release Słownik polsko-polski, which translates as the ‘Polish-Polish Dictionary’. This evolved out of his previous book, named after the notorious ‘Holy War’ derby between the two major Kraków football clubs, which documented the graffiti of Polish fans. His latest publication focuses on the nationalist murals that have come to dominate the country’s walls under the PiS government. 

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Track & Field Interview

Track and Field / PE zine

I recently got sent a copy of a magazine called Track & Field. Open mouthed in horror I began to read the introduction; what an earth is a defence of Thatcherism doing in a graff mag I thought to myself?! Well it turns out the short introductory essay on competition actually refers to the sporting rivalry between Steve Ovett and Sebastian Coe in the ‘80s. The determination of these two athletes is used as a metaphor for the struggles of a graffiti writer. Sports fans are invited into the pages of a magazine that aims to “bring a voice to culture that shows no sign of taking a defeat just yet.” The ‘voice’ refers to the index of text, in the back pages, that follows the photography.    

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XARPI Book Interview

XARPI book

I recently got sent an unusual book from Brazil titled XARPI which focuses on the unique tagging culture of Rio de Janeiro. The book’s author, João Marcelo, has produced a brilliant typology of xarpi, the variant of pixação found in his native city. Marcelo is a graphic designer, graduated in Industrial Design in 1998 at the Faculdade da Cidade, who has spent the last eight years dedicated to documenting every corner of Rio where xarpi could be found. As this style of graff is little known on this side of the globe I decided to ask him a bit more about how his project developed, what exactly xarpi is, and how the book came about: Continue reading

Adam Void Interview

Adam Void

Nirvana Rules is the latest of offering from among the many excellent zines Adam Void has produced. The title gives a clue to the content within which focuses on the ‘Nirvana Rules’ tag he first noticed on the streets of Baltimore. The graffiti is unconventional, both in its form and style, yet being well-executed and repeated often this clearly isn’t just a series of spontaneous tributes left by random Nirvana fans. In the introduction to the zine Adam Void points out that it’s not unusual to see a popular band’s name on a wall. Fans of various groups eg; KIϟϟ, Iron Maiden, or Slayer seem to enjoy slapping a bit of emulsion on brick or writing on a toilet door. However the Nirvana Rules tag appears to be unique in that it has a dual function as one person’s tag. Presented over the pages of the zine in black and white the tag is shown to have a clear aesthetic being placed on a variety of surfaces and mediums.

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Gossenpost Interview

Gossenpost 2

Not too long ago the second instalment of Gossenpost was released! The focus of the magazine remains on the margins of aesthetically acceptable graffiti with a load of grimy tags, but this time round it has a more specific focus around markers. The issue kicks off with tippex scribbles, followed by marks left with crayons, and a third section of juicy blammers. Alongside these three main sections are special chapters on individual taggers. Even more so than in the previous issue the pictures are compartmentalised and ordered by colour, surface, style and location. In fact this issue came about as an overflow of the first, containing some of the cool handstyles from around Frankfurt. Aside from being a glorious celebration of ‘the tag’ Gossenpost is original in its approach to displaying graffiti. To understand the concept behind it a bit more I asked the magazine’s editor how it came about.

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