It was a tough weekend for Artist Kenny Scharf who was arrested Saturday morning at 1:03am. The vandal was brought in on charges of making graffiti and possession of a graffiti instrument after being caught spraying a smiling snake on private property at 209 Morgan Avenue in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Clearly a threatening image, from the photo above.
The 55-year old artist was a contemporary of Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat in the 1980’s, being among the group of artists well known for bringing art from the streets into the gallery, and vice versa. In fact it wasn’t Scharf’s first time in bookings, “I was in there 30 years ago and I’m sorry to say it’s much worse now. Kind of like hell.” he said via his Facebook page.
Although it sucks getting bagged anyway you cut it, ironically the arresting officers fanned out over the culprit in custody. Scharf said, “Cops who arrested me were fans and wanted to talk about exit through the gift shop and even liked the tag. At the first holding cell in Williamsburg (there were only 5 people in the cell) the police were googling me and asking about things like the tunnel nightclub.”
However there is a silver lining (excelsior!) If a rapper getting shot before their release date could help drive record sales then perhaps this incident will result in additional press for the artist’s solo show Kolors, currently on display at Paul Kasmin Gallery at 515 West 27th street in Chelsea through May 4th.