This is very true....
Joe responds to today's NYT article on Simon Curtis from the Irak Crew:
"I love your site and have been doing graffiti/street art in some form or another and following it since about 1989. But I do not agree at all about that Simon Curtis article being so great from the Times. This dude acted like a fool, straight up and people are gonna glorify yet another suburban kid and his friends who obviously come from above avearge lifestyles and come to New York acting up and gettin all fucked up on whatever, and then they are made out to be some kind of cool, hip rebels. I am sorry, but I went through hanging in NYC since I was about 15, skating, chillin, doing whatever. Everyone experimented with this and that, got wild, went out, partied, had their fun, etc, etc. So why then is this dude made out to be some "graf rebel". The media comes up with some of the wackest, conrniest stories on things they don't know the half of. It's the same dumb scenario over and over. "Oh he hung out with a crazy group of bandits, he did this and that, he got fucked up" blah blah blah. What a fuckin dumb situation that was. I am not impressed at all with a 31 year old man getting all fucked up and then wondering why the fuck he got into some stupid situation like that. You're not 18 anymore. Yeah it was a prank, yeah he was fucked up on who knows what, but you start putting people's lives and well being at stake, and not knowing when to stop, and you are a grown man, you deserve what you get. If these were kids from the ghetto, they would have never heard the end of it. It would have been attempted murder charges. But these are some rich kids driving around in daddy's mercedes and acting like they are living the rough life. I see way too much of that these days. And then the stupid media bullshit of how they try to portray the dark underworld of what these kids do. It's so corny. The lower east side stopped being any kind of underworld about 15 years ago, so people need to chill with the dramatics. I am just really not impressed with a lot of these portrayals from young artists who have so much, go to expensive ass colleges and pretend they have nothing and are made out to be some kind of geniuses. I am way more impressed with artists who are doing their thing on the down low, not getting all fucked up every night, just into creating and being themselves. Not having to wear all the trendy $100 nike dunks and pre-ripped $100 soho boutique pants. Everyone is trying to live out some NYC fantasy that they saw in movies and read in books, and now they want to pretend they are a part of some movement. NYC will always be one of my favorite places and I grew up here, but any original movements died a long time ago. Maybe that's why all these so called hip people are trying to move near the projects in Brooklyn now, so they can try to convince people they are living the struggle. Life is just not like that in NYC anymore unless you are in the projects. It is the same thing with graffiti, a lot of street art people do not have respect for the art that started what they do. Cost and Revs were doing it years ago, it just wasn't labeled as anything else but graff. Tons of people were doing stickers back then. It just got bigger now and is evolving. But it seems like a lot of street artists really don't know the unwritten rules of it such as going over other people's shit. That's flat out disrespect to wheat paste over a fill in that is someone else's art creation. I am into both street art and graff and I will tell you, if a graff writer saw that happening to his fill in, he'd be pissed and probably fight the dude. Don't get me wrong, a lot of graff writers are caught up in so much unnecessary drama that is such bullshit like all the beef between writers. I could ramble on and on and I am sure you might not agree with everything and it is no disrespect to you directly, I just felt the need to give you my 2 cents on this. I know a lot of street artists and graff wirters are good people with good hearts, but this is aimed more towards the ones who are glorified for all the wrong things, living some soap opera lifestyles that they created all by themselves. I just don't think it is something to look up to when you have these cool people who try to do the right thing and are more on the down low with their art and personalities, not trying to live the rock star lifestyle.
PEACE and keep up the good work!"