I was back at it for the first time since moving to Chattanooga. This time I needed to be sneaky.
The southern edge of Chattanooga city limits are along the border with Georgia. Across the border is the 14th Congressional District, where Marjorie Taylor-Greene is the representative and was up for re-election. She still won, of course, but I had to do my part.
There was no time for another poster. I adapted my poster design and created a new, second design. It’ll likely be a poster at some point.
Yeah, I got big timed. Greg Mike covered it up with some of his work. Guess, he liked the location too. Since I live nearby and could see what was happening, I walked up to him and introduced myself when he was painting his work over mine.
Nothing wrong with Greg Mike, Greg Mike is alright. He has as much right to put his work up there as I do. However, it’s not that simple. Here is a great spot that many people used over the last few years. Now it is changed. Because he’s a known commodity, the spot is now basically his. Others artists will now be reluctant to cover it up, even though they should.
This episode is all from the unwritten rulebook of Atlanta Street Art culture. I don’t belong. It’s OK. I’ve never fit into any club anyway.
The images below are a visual report of the destruction and regeneration and further destruction of the LIES street galleries. The slow destruction of this type of work is beautiful and has amazing mixed media potential. This documentation will be used in a future mixed media artwork series.
My final response to my graffiti artist nuisance was to make more posters, and paste up more posters. A lot more!
Living across the street allowed me to work with precision timing. As you can see from these photos, it was a lot of fun. A few total strangers stopped by to show support. Some of them wanted to get involved, including a Canadian citizen in full support of my message. We had to work fast, but I still had time to document the activity.
Here is my response to the message sent to me in the previous post. You might not agree with my point of view, but my guess is that most will. Regardless, I hope it provides context to why I would bother to respond in the first place.
You also might not agree with my sharp language, however I feel it is absolutely appropriate for this environment. For context, the Forward Warrior murals I refer to are spaces given to artists to make their work, a specific work. They are making art for the public space. For everyone. Taggers, at least the ones that are assholes, will often tag those pieces of art. These murals are art in a public gallery given to the community for all to enjoy. It is wrong to tag this work.
The space where I am working is public domain. No one can claim it. No one can dictate what type of media can be used either. Taggers can go ahead and tag it. They can do their thing, but don’t tell me I can’t be here. “The entitled tagger?” Makes me laugh out loud, because it’s super lame.
I’m not hiding or running away. I put my name to my words. I stand behind everything I wrote and posted.
Open Letter to Graffiti Artists (AKA Taggers)
It shouldn’t have to be said, yet here we are. You do not own the wall on Wylie Street, CSX does. Don’t be bitches when other artists use paper and paste instead of spray paint to communicate their message. Until CSX declares this wall to be for “graffiti only” you’ve got nothing to say. Tag it, that’s the nature of the beast. However, don’t declare it “graffiti only.” It’s laughable for a street artist to make such a suggestion.
I’ve been pasting up my art on this Wylie Street wall for over 5 years. In 2016, I had 150 feet of this wall covered at once. At the time, this was a stagnant location filled with old, weathered graffiti and lame ass tags. I was tired of looking at the same old stale shit. Graffiti artists have been tagging over my pasted up street art for years.
Now there’s an unwritten rule that this particular wall is only for graffiti? What a joke. Street artists intentionally avoid the structured gallery system and their rules. Now some want to subject others to their own version of arbitrary gallery rules within the public space???! Sounds like a bunch of bitchy establishment bullshit to me and any street artist worth their salt would know better than to utter such nonsense. Only the Forward Warrior murals are off limits. I do not paste on those, nor should anyone else. Yet that still doesn’t stop taggers from pissing spray paint on them too.
Pick up your damn trash! I regularly throw away empty spray cans tossed aside by street artists as I clean up as much of my mess as I can.
Spray paint artists and paste up artists, and slap (sticker) artists can and should co-exist in a public space such as this one right here.
I was quite pleased with this one. The location was perfect. High visibility, high impact. Right where the Beltline crosses Wylie St. Unfortunately, it didn’t last. Greg Mike covered it up with some of his same old shit. Guess, he liked the location too. I might post about it later when I present some of my thoughts on the Atlanta street art culture.
Here are some pictures of the installation. Pasted up during daylight, for a change.
Logistically, I started focusing my street art displays on one location. An old favorite. The wall across the street from my house on Wylie Street. The place I used for three of my four large scale paste up pieces. I posted about them years ago. You can find pictures here, here, and here.
This wall is ridged, which made it too difficult for pasting up the large-scale prints. Too much surface area. However, this would not be a problem with these new smaller posters. Therefore, I went to work making a large scale display.
In 2020 and 2021, I took the LIES targeted poster series to the streets of Atlanta. This work meant nothing if it wasn’t seen by the public. This was conceptual art as a graphic brand. It was also political protest art intended to make a sharp and direct point.
At this time, I ventured to a few popular hotspots around town (including the famed OutKast mural in Little Five Points) and, along with the help of a few friends, pasted up dozens and dozens of posters. Here are some of the documentation highlights.