Subway Art

Subway Art

by Martha Cooper, Henry Chalfant


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Subway Art by Martha Cooper, Henry Chalfant

Ephemeral, secretive, illegal. Rebellious, provacative, competitive. This is America's newest folk art. Seeded in the gang rivalry of New York's adolescents, it has developed from crude graffiti writing to a highly sophisticated calligraphy that flowers in a constantly changing, bold and brilliant traveling show on the city's subway system.

Two gifted photographers, working closely with the "writers" themselves, have documented every aspect of this extraordinary urban subculture: its origins and history, styles and techniques, vocabulary and conventions, the philosphy of the talented and innovative young artists, and the hostility of unappreciative authority.

This is the definitive record of a unique cultural phenomenon that is equally fascinating in its social significance and in its artistic importance. Subway art has surfaced from underground to appear on the walls of major galleries and museums around the world. Along with break dancing and rap music, it is a component of the "Hip Hop" style that has become the most dynamic creative expression of the early 1980s.-

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780805006780
Publisher: Holt, Henry & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 09/28/1988
Edition description: REV
Pages: 104
Product dimensions: 8.24(w) x 10.78(h) x 0.33(d)

About the Author

Henry Chalfant is a photographer and videographer most notable for his work on graffiti, breakdance, and hip-hop culture.

Martha Cooper is a photojournalist.

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Subway Art 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book tought my everthing i wanted 2 know and more. i bomb every line and mytags is down wit TNT(the nations top) Trane
Guest More than 1 year ago
yo dis book is very good i do graff on paper so it is a very good influence and on my style i also recomend the book spraycan art
Guest More than 1 year ago
Martha Cooper's/Henry Chalfant's book 'Subway Art' is well formatted and excellently photographed. It has been an influential tool for many writers back then and now. However,having visited Henry's studio,I must admit that the 'whole car' photographs in this book barely touch the 'tip of the iceberg.' Henry's broad collection of photos (done by the same writers)could of featured some of their better work which was not. Having had my early work in Mr.Chalfant's documentary 'Style-Wars' which preceded 'Subway Art',I still feel that Mr. Chalfant and Ms.Cooper have done more for this movement then anyone else and it shows in the quality of their photographs.This book is a serious 'history lesson' in graffiti that is still alive today but not as visible on trains as it once was.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Subway art shows the New York transit system at its best! Color photos,crews, information, and kings galore! This book shows what NY graf on trains are all about and a place in time where masterpieces and burners rolled on steel! This book is A must for any book collection!.......
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is pretty good. It gives you the basics on what things are and how everything came about. I consider this book to be more old skool than anything else, mainly because most pieces in this book are from the 80's. This book is still pretty good though, even if it is old skool...the original way.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found this book to be very insightful and illustrative of subway graffitti and the artists who create it. Photography is first rate and plentiful in this potential candidate for a hardcover coffee-table book re-issue. Its both refreshing and surprising to read authors who aproach the subject in a very non-judgemental and introspective manner(!)
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book was really nice because graffiti tells a story and this books show youvery well how it does that. If i were you i would get this
Guest More than 1 year ago
some of the pieces is okay but there´s alot of crazy stuff goin´ down!!...... some of them is kind of cool like mode 2´s characters and seen of bad there´s so many old school pieces but it´s a okay book if u look at it as a whole.....peace!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book contains how the art of graffiti came alive.It explains everything about the this new,exciting,respectable form of art. It comes with full color pictures of many different artists that are sure to inspire you to start 'bombing'. ...Royle