A painting called “Buff,” by an artist who’s known simply as “Lee,” would sell for something like $90,000 — quite a step up from his graffiti roots, when he was writing on the wall for free. Rita Braver now joins the issue over whether graffiti is art:
“It is now in fact a national urban epidemic,” said one journalist in a 1972 CBS News report. “It spreads like some mysterious magic marker pen, spray-paint fungus. And now it seem that almost every inch of every public wall is covered with names in an obscured kind of print.”
Remember when graffiti was the scourge of American cities?
But now what was once considered vandalism is being presented in an exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York, showcasing some who, as teenagers, left their mark in the 1970s and ’80s.
“I’m going to be 59 this year,” said Futura 2000, whose real name is Leonard McGurr, “and so looking back, wow, it just doesn’t seem real.”
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