Write of Passage Workshops

Write of Passage has curated a series of lectures from some of the most notable members of the graffiti community. This workshop series is by INVITATION ONLY. For more information contact: [email protected].

In the early days, it was all about your signature. Rocky 184, Mike 171 and Snake 1 remember the times and discuss how far the culture of writing has come, at a time in the history of the movement wherein tagging is respected more than ever. Speakers: Rocky 184, Mike 171, Snake 1

The relationship between graffiti artists and the Metropolitan Transit Authority has never been smooth; and more specifically, the relationship between writers and the infamous Vandal Squad—the special police division dedicated to arresting these wayward individuals —was especially intense.  But the act of the chase—or rather the act of cat and mouse—had a hand in the development (and thwarting) of the culture. Steve Mona is a retired police officer. He used to head up the Vandal Squad (AKA “VS”).  Alain “Ket” Mariduena is one of the infamous graffiti artists Mr. Mona once chased. This is the first time these two men have a conversation since their days in the trenches. It’s a tale of us VS them. Speakers: Steve Mona, Ket

Artists and curators discuss the rise, and fall and re-rise of the art establishment’s interest in graffiti. And with Seen’s recent sale of a singular painting in the healthy six-figure range, classic graffiti’s stock is on the rise. Speakers: Alan Bortman, Daze, Cope 2, Jonathan Levine

Exploration of the role that sketch books played in spreading of writing culture, and the execution of a great many masterworks. Artists—with black book sketches and photos of completed works—discuss their creative process and the importance of style. Students are taught the aesthetic values of both bubble letters and Wild Style forms and the fine art of piecebook rockin’. Speakers: Ces, Keo, Serve

Graffiti historian Henry Chalfant (co-author of Subway Art, as well as producer of the award-winning documentary, Style Wars) will discuss the unintentional influence photography had on the art itself. Chalfant will demonstrate how, out of necessity, he pioneered the art of “connector” photography. David “Chino” Villorente will discuss the effects of photography on writing culture, from the perspective of writers. Speakers: Henry Chalfant, David “Chino” Villorente

Graffiti artists have always been meticulous when it comes to documenting their work. Their masterpieces on the subways were temporary, but photography would give these works new life.  Over the last 25 years, via independent magazines, videos and websites, graffiti artists have created their own media outfits. And what started out with a singular, off-set printed, map-formatted ‘zine (AKA the International Graffiti Times) is now a global juggernaut with graffiti news agencies situated everywhere. Speakers: Allen Benedikt (12 Oz Prophet) , Carl Weston (Video Graff), Sacha Jenkins (Mass Appeal)

Claudia “Claw Money” Gold was a nice Jewish girl who grew up on suburban Long Island, but it was her teenage, weekend escapes to the big city that would introduce her to the graffiti underground. She would go on to make a name for herself on the streets, putting her Claw icon up everywhere, and earning the respect of some of graffiti’s most notorious crews. Years later, Gold has parlayed her talents as an artist, designer and stylist into the worlds of fine art and high-fashion. Her discussion will outline her rise, and the pitfalls along the way.  Speakers: Claw

Eric Haze and Cedric “Cey” Adams discuss their transition from the raw world of subway graffiti into corporate America via their illustration and graphic design work. The pair will walk us through some of their iconic works and give us a window into their creative processes along the way. Speakers: Eric Haze, Cey Adams

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