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L'Art du Graffiti - Monte Carlo, Monaco

The exibition "L' Art du Graffiti" celebrates 40 years of Graffiti Art. In his incredible personal collection curator and architect Alain-Dominique Gallizia brought together 500 works on canvas of international artists from five continents. Until August 19th the show at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco gives a historical and stylistic overview from the American pioneers to the Europeans masters and the most promising young talents of the Graffiti movement.

Exactely 40 years to the day of the exhibition opening, July 21st, an article about "TAKI 183" who introduced a new form of graphic expression called Graffiti Art was published on the front page of the New York Times. His tag was an alternative short form for his Greek birth-name Demetrius, and the number 183 came from his address at 183rd Street in Washington Heights. As a foot messenger in New York City he wrote his nickname on the walls in each street that he frequented during the late 1960s and early 1970s. What began as a self-affirmation soon became a way of artistic expression for many young kids in New York which tried to get attention and wanted to become famous over night in this impersonal city. Hiding behind their pseudonyms they developed different styles and established their rank. They needed a lot of practice to become a real graffiti writer because painting with spray can is very difficult. It's all about the right distance, speed, tilt of the aerosol can and pressure of its cap. In the early 1980s graffiti was imported to France and then spread all over the globe.

Gallizia founded the "Tag Hive", a studio and exhibition space, which gave these artists a working place and that soon became an important meeting point. The three impressive major collections of the show are called "Love", "Vintage" and "Rammellzee".
The "Love Collection" are commissioned works of 180 arosoel artists. Its theme was inspired by Duez, who wrote "Love" on the walls of Gallizia's house. On double panoramic canvas you can find the name of the artists on the left and their vision of love on the right. The paintings includes many American pioneers like Taki 183, Quik, Seen or Mode2, the European wave like Ash, Bando and JayOne as well as worldwide new talents like the Chinese artist Dal, Aislap from Chile and Mizer from Russia.
The "Vintage Collection" is a historical collection of rare and mostly unpublished vintage works on canvas, wood and metal of artists like Aone, Bear, Futura, Phase2, Dondi and Noc which illustrate the calligraphic development. The collection presents the artists' creative process from the the works on paper in their sketchbooks to the final wall paintings.
The "Rammellzee Collection" is a tribute to the multidisciplinary African-American artist who died in 2010. It shows ten paintings from the middle of the 1980s until today including his last paintings with collages of war objects, photos and newspaper article which are covered in spray paint. It also reports about Basquiat's famous painting “Hollywood Africans”, which presents Rammellzee, J.M. Basquiat and Toxic together. With their works they started a new art movement, expressing the injustice of the society through painting the walls of the town.

Although the street art context is missing the colorful paintings on dark walls show the spirit of the movement. The exhibition demonstrates not only the creative artistic expression but also a cultural expression of our society. A PDF with more information is available here: