Graffiti artists Eric “Cre8” Walker, Eddie “Fishe” Rico, Juan Carlos “Heaven” Muñoz-Hernandez, Alex “Defer” Kizu, and Alex “Axis” Ventura discuss their work and the impact that the L.A. Graffiti Black Book has had on them, in a virtual conversation on Tuesday, May 18, 4–5:30pm (PT).
L.A. Graffiti Black Book spotlights the tradition of the “black book,” a blank sketchbook in which graffiti artists ask friends, crew members, and others they admire to embellish a page with lettering or drawing. Students in seventeenth-century Europe did much the same thing, passing around elaborate autograph books to be inscribed and decorated with calligraphy, mottoes, and coats of arms.
Curator of rare books David Brafman brought these traditions together at the Getty Research Institute, inviting graffiti artists such as Angst, Axis, Big Sleeps, Chaz, King Cre8, Defer, EyeOne, Fishe, Heaven, Hyde, Look, Man One, and Prime to look at rare books and discuss the idea of a citywide Los Angeles black book.
These artists became creators and curators, crafting artworks and inviting others to participate. Eventually, 151 artists contributed 143 original works on paper to a multi-voice “master-piece” artists’ book.
Reproduced in L.A. Graffiti Black Book for the first time, all of the artworks together recount the story of an unprecedented collaboration and provide a spectacular view of the diverse artistic landscape of Los Angeles, while making the work accessible to a worldwide audience.
To learn more and register in advance for this free, online event, visit getty.edu.