Today I received this harshly retarded email from Holland’s Shoe aka Niels Shoe Meulman…
In this email Shoe talks of the good ol’ days in NYC and how it’s all supposed to be. How MSK style graffiti is wack and how we should all bow down to his expansive knowledge of graffiti…
Why Fab 5 Freddy deserves his check before Sever gets his
By Shoe CIA.
Any graffiti writer that didn’t bomb trains in New York during the 70’s and 80’s should shut the fuck up. Period.
Everybody in the culture knows this.
I realize it’s somewhat of a paradox whilst writing this, but when I read this lame attack on graffiti icon Fab 5 Freddy by Revok I was too tempted to break this unwritten law.
In New York, in the the 80’s, there was graffiti and there was hip hop culture. They were one. Futura was hanging out with The Clash, Keith Haring was designing record sleeves for Malcolm McLaren and Blondie sang “Fab Five Freddie told me everybody’s fly, DJ’s spinning I said my, my. Flash is fast, Flash is cool. Francois sais pas, Flashe no deux. Nobody knew what that meant (still don’t) but it did made the world spin faster. Dondi did the video for Buffalo Gals and the rest is history.
About ten years later, kids in Germany and Califonia got the message (partly) and started to do their ‘awesome’ letter styles.
Catch my drift? That airbrushy-fantasy nonsense is going nowhere. When Bando and I where concentrating on the basics of letters and rocking silvers all across Europe, these soon-to-be graffiti fascists were still in diapers.
So, let it be known that when kings like Futura and Lee decide to do a show with Fab Five Freddy you have only one thing to do.
That suggestion of bitten letters has no foundation whatsoever.
(below) The Exchange book
My response to Shoe…
You are completely out of line sending this response out and attacking our work to justify your claims. If our work is “airbrushy-fantasy nonsense that goes nowhere” why did you ask to have our work in your gallery? And why did you come down to LA pushing to collaborate with our crew / Known Gallery in some fashion? Shame on you and your out of touch idea of what graffiti is.
Your idea of this magical hip hop rainbow over New York City during the 70’s and 80’s can only be believed by a naive European like yourself. I’m from New York, born there, lived there, and started writing there. My idea of graffiti and the people that do it is not some sort of distant fantasy, that was by chance packaged in a digestable way, and exported to my town. It was happening and was not as sacred and pure as you make it out to be. Anyone is open to being called out for direct plagiarism. There is nothing sacred or divine about so called hip hop or those who peddle it to the world.
You’re from the countryside of Holland. You happened to go to a Dondi art show in the 80’s, copied that style and you’re now trying to claim it as your own? I was never influenced by you or Bando whatsoever. Credit Dondi’s canvas work before your own, and even then you are still out of the loop going 20+ years. You have an outsiders view about graffiti post 1989 and have lost any true understanding of lettering style, trends, or concepts; so your opinion is worthless.
Despite our differences in opinion here are the facts:
Fab 5 Freddy helped to bring graffiti and Hip Hop into the mainstream with “Wildstyle”, music act tie-ins, and hosting Yo MTV Raps. Not really a writer himself, he did hang around with a lot of notable writers and helped to make shit happen. I grew up watching him introduce music videos and respect his contributions. Just like you Neils, Fab 5 Freddy is completely out of touch with modern graffiti. This would be okay if not for his attempts at making art out of current peoples art.
Fact: Creating art for the Three Kings art show, Fab 5 Freddy took a copy of The Exchange book, cut out pieces in the book, poorly collaged them together and ran them through generic filters in photoshop. From there he digitally printed it all onto canvas. The work cut out from the book was used as the centerpiece within each printed canvas. No mention of The Exchange book, the writers work he used or anything related was given by Fab 5 Freddy. Besides Sever, Freddy used parts of a Yes 2 piece done in Los Angeles in 2007, Rime / Bates exchange piece done in Sweden in 2008, an Aroe / Sever exchange piece done in LA in 2007, and others.
This would be cool if he knew whose work he was using, gave credit and explained his intentions. As far as I know he has done none of that and most likely wouldn’t know where to begin.
Revok’s response to Shoe…
Eventually you & I will meet face to face, when we do PLEASE tell me to “shut the fuck up”