"Graffiti is and will always be highly illegal.....graffiti inspires its legions to take risks and dedicate everything to the lifestyle." So opens the fine introduction by Roger Gastman followed immediately with an Interview with POWER, Founder of Can Control which capsulizes almost every aspect answering the question 'why graffiti?. This lavishly illustrated and designed book spends the rest of its pages with images of graffiti from throughout the Los Angeles Basin: this is a study in visual expression, in the multi-Ethnic culture that is Los Angeles, and ultimately an homage to the creators of the inner city murals that speak loudly about life in our times.
Although the word introductions to the book are informative, the subsequent lack of words throughout the book forces the reader to examine each image and ask questions of that image which at times a re apparent and at equal times occult. But the joy of LOS ANGELES GRAFFITI is the lushly colorful, sensitively designed pages that allow the graffiti to stand solidly as an art form. Few books on the subject can match the quality of photography, the sensitive color reproduction, or the vast amount of visual information the way this book does. It is a book about an outsider art, about protest, about territories, and about beauty - a book that should be in every library in the sociology section and every art library about significant contemporary art. Highly recommended. Grady Harp, August 07
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