The History of American Graffiti.
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Square 4to. 405 pp., illus. Unprecedented in scope, The History of American Graffiti (not to be confused with the charming George Lucas film), is the definitive story behind the most pestilential and dubious form of expression of the last one hundred years. Tracing the evolution of the medium from its early freight-train days to its unsightly proliferation on the streets of New York City and Philadelphia, and to its modern-day influences, this volume is a compelling look at the key moments, places, and players in a form of vandalism distinctly American in flavor yet global in its reach. Featuring behind-the-scenes stories and profiles gleaned from more than four years' worth of interviews with graffiti's most prominent scofflaws, as well as its lesser-known practitioners, authors Roger Gastman and Caleb Neelon provide an insider's perspective on the history of the medium. Not only do they reveal the most popular trends and styles that have dominated the scene for the last fifty years but they also provide a thorough examination of the regional differences among major American hubs--New York, Los Angeles, the Bay Area, Chicago--and under-the-radar scenes in cities like Washington, D.C., Boston, and Miami. All told, more than twenty-five American cities are profiled, making this one of the most comprehensive volumes on the subject. With more than one thousand photographs--the majority of which are seen here for the first time--from more than two hundred photographers, most of whom are also guilty of creating the graffiti, The History of American Graffiti captures the look and feel of a genuine American phenomenon with exceptional clarity and detail. This book is the ultimate resource to which aficionados of scrawl will turn again and again, and which art lovers will regard as an indisputably very large book on graffiti. Near fine in a very good dust jacket.
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- Gastman, Roger and Caleb Neelon.
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