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Skame

If you want to work in a clandestine manner, don’t hire the CIA. Hire an underground graffiti artist.
I am astounded at how long some of these individuals have kept their identities secret, even after working for decades, interviews with the New York Times, or having been arrested, as Revs was in 2000. These men are not hiding in the hills of Afghanistan. They are living in the most populous city in the United States and tagging prominent public spaces in high-traffic neighborhoods.

In the 1980s and 1990s, Revs teamed up with artist Cost, and they became two of the most well-known graffiti artists in New York City. Cost and Revs gave a rare interview in 1993 with New York Times reporter Michael Cooper. In 1995, Cost was arrested and his identity finally became known: Adam Cole of Rego Park, Queens.

Revs’ identity, on the other hand, even after his arrest in 2000, is still unknown.
In 2004, in an interview for ArtForum magazine, Revs said, “We think art should be dangerous. Everybody’s into safe art, doing safe things in their studio. We’re bringing danger back into it. It’s got to be on the edge, where it’s not allowed.”
In 2005, he was interviewed again by Times reporter Randy Kennedy (article here). “To me,” he said in a rare interview, “once money changes hands for art, it becomes a fraudulent activity.”

The work in the photo is on Canal Street, one of the most trafficked crosstown streets in the city. How access is had and these things are done without being apprehended is a mystery to me. I had hoped to get some information of any sort on the artist who tags himself as Skame, but I could find nothing.

According to the Urban Dictionary, s.c.a.m.e. is an acronym utilized by the Psyop Community. “It is conducive to ‘counter-propaganda,’ in that, it eludes to source, content, audience, media used, and effect of the propaganda. To s.c.a.m.e. propaganda, refers to one’s attempt to analyze the content of said propaganda using techniques taught at the JFK Special Warfare Training Center.” I don’t know if there is a connection to the tag Skame, and perhaps I will never know…

5 Responses to Skame

  1. Thanks for the artistic inspiration. I felt vicariously dangerous reading it from my cubicle in the office this morning.

  2. QUALITY I really like this blog, now im not 1 for adding links in my replies but I feel this is a great exception, I read a story like this about graffiti artist Darren Cullen on http://www.hire-a-graffiti-artist.co.uk/ he also works with another bunch of graffiti artists called the Graffiti Kings.

  3. I like the history behind each facade I view. Great way to enrich my own history

  4. "How access is had and these things done without being apprehended is a mystery to me."

    Lets just say…. anyway you can possibly think of.

    More of Skames work.
    http://streetfiles.org/search/Skame/photos

  5. For authoritative info about graffiti art, check out the iPad Book “Big Subway Archive.” Google search “Big Subway Archive” and it should show right up. Tons of cool pictures!


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