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It's the MOA MOA MOA

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nice thread.MONSTAS OF ART KILLL ITT.BANOS...aparently he u8ses GOLOD CAPS on his tins wen doing bak jumps they come out 13 inchs about the size of my willy lol jokes.but they are gangster.

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Re: woah


Originally posted by hamilTRON

what does the s stand for.





As stated above "Monsters of Art"

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Text and Pictures by Alan Emmins


The clock tells me it’s just after midnight. On the platform people come and go, I eye all of them up and down wondering, could it be them? Finally a guy in a green hooded top idles up to me.


“Follow me.” He says.


Further down the platform we join two of his friends, they give me a nod but little more is said. The train comes and we jump on board, the train ride, I am told, will take about thirty minutes, we are heading to the suburbs of Copenhagen. At the very last stop we will leave the train and wait, as soon as the all clear is given the MOA crew (Monsters Of Art) will hit up every train that sits there, sleeping until the next morning.


MOA are considered the biggest graffiti crew in the world; they were formed back in 91 and are considered the daddies of hitting up. They have crews in ten countries now, although they wont say which ones. In fact due to the police campaign that has been launched against them they won’t give much information about themselves. But this is to be expected, it did after all take me ten months to set this story up.


We are three stops from the end of the line, talk is minimal, there are other passengers around, and nobody wants to give anything away. But the silence is broken; right above our heads a fist-sized rock comes smashing through the window, glass flies everywhere.


“Hold da helt kæft!” (FUCK THAT!) laughs the guy sitting next to me, he is the tallest of the group and one of the oldest crewmembers, we’ll call him MOA1.


The problem with the smashed window isn’t the fact that everybody is covered in glass, it’s that the three guys from MOA have bags full of spray cans. If the police come into the carriage because of this smashed window and search their bags they’re looking at jail time.


“The last time I was in court for graffing they tried to fine me 3 million kroners (about 300,000GBP), luckily the case got thrown out because of some evidence that was missing.” Tells MOA1.


For most people a near fine of 300,000 pounds would have them hanging up their cans, but when you talk about graffers/writers/taggers you are not talking about normal people. You’re talking about an entire subculture that chooses to express themselves freely.


“The last time I was convicted for writing they didn’t even catch me doing anything, the cops grabbed me, threw me on the ground and arrested me. Then they searched my home and found some graffiti mags…I was fined a thousand pounds and was put in jail for three weeks.”


You may think the chase is the addiction for graffiti writers, that the thrill of the chase is the backbone behind what they do, but you’d be wrong.


“The worst thing that can happen when we’re hitting up is that the cops will come, or the security…that just really pisses me off. It would piss off any serious writer. If I have to run halfway through a piece…I don’t want half finished pieces of art out there. It’s fucking hard to track down half finished pieces to finish them off. Ideally I’d like to be left alone to finish. Maybe in the beginning the chase was part of it, sure there is an adrenalin rush, but now it’s about expression.”


Luckily the police don’t arrive, we leave the train at the last station and start walking away. We turn a few corners, force our way through a thick bush and follow a fence that runs down the side of the train tracks. Ducking every now and again when one of the guards are seen. After a few minutes of walking I notice that the group has grown in size, now there are six guys. Twenty minutes further and we stop, now comes the wait, it’s a typical March morning in Copenhagen, which means it’s minus degrees. Now we stand waiting while the guards move the trains in and out.


“What’s the best thing about being in MOA?” I ask one of the guys as we stand waiting.


“We have friends all over the world, we travel a lot, meet up with MOAS all over, we get to crash at their pads and go and bomb in new places.”


“What’s you favourite city to hit up in?”


“This one, if you’re serious about what you do no other city will ever replace your own, you love your trains more than any others.”


An hour passes by; I am shivering from head to foot, wondering how graffiti exists outside of the summer. But when I look at the MOA crew they are all standing still, no shakes or shivers, it’s as if they are immune to the cold.


As soon as the cleaners have left and the guards are safely tucked up in their office with warm coffee we are on the move. In single file we emerge and run along the tracks to where three trains sit, all lit up and groaning. The crew waist little time, within seconds they are up on the metal walkway, spread out with cans in their hands.

I watch as the guys go about their work, all with around a 10m gap between them. In the cold mists of illegality, the cans sound as if they have been mic’d up.



I am amazed that the guards haven’t come running from their hut. I am also amazed by how organised the crew is, there are no conversations going on, no whispers about who should be where or who should be doing what. Even as an outsider I can tell that this crew has been working together for a long time.


Within minutes there is an outline of a character, MOA1 stands with a comic book in his hand studying and then relaying what he sees onto the side of the train. The rest of the crew, MOA’S 2-6, scurry about like ants, they work with their own paint, as they finish with one colour it goes back in the bag. The bag sits in the middle of the walkway where they work. Ready to be scooped up should they need to make a dash for it. There are two reasons for keeping the cans organised in the bags. The first is that if they get busted at this site they will move onto another and will need their paints. The other is fingerprints.


As the crew works I wonder if an escape at this point would even be possible. They all seem so completely immersed in what they’re doing, deep in another zone. I don’t think they would notice the arrival of the police or a guard up until the point they were tapped on the shoulder and greeted with the words ‘ello ello ello’.


The silence is almost eerie; there is almost zero communication between the guys, or at least verbal communication that is. But the message they are communicating through their art is clear.


“We do this with our life…the effort we put in, the money it costs for our cans, the standing out here waiting for hours in the freezing cold, the fines, the jail time…we do it because this is the only way we can feel free. We are in another world when we write; we’re not bound by the rules and regulations. This is a life, no amount of fines or busts will ever stop us, if you want freedom in this world you have to take it…that’s what this is.” Says MOA2.


There are many opinions on why trains have become the graffiti artists canvas, some say it’s because they are on the move, networking across cities, enabling the art to be seen by as many as possible. For others it’s about destruction, but for the long-standing crews like MOA it’s also about disruption. The trains are seen as vessels to keep the machine flowing, to bring the people to the jobs, to earn the money, to continue the cycle. The trains are all given the same identity, the same colours, the same logos; it’s all a bit Brave New World. Graffing the trains breaks up the uniform identity, it’s not just a case of freedom, it’s a necessity.


Forty five minutes in and the train is fully converted, an entire carriage has been made over, it now breaths colour instead of the dull dark red of the Copenhagen S train. Stepping back to take it all in it becomes obvious that this art isn’t about destruction; it’s not like most of the graffiti you see on walls and trains. Destruction gets boring after a while, but these guys are clearly not bored, the image is full of life. It doesn’t just speak of their mood today, it speaks of the years they have put into this art form. You don’t get this good over night.


Further down at the next carriage, a big MOA tag has been placed, it stands tall and silver. One of the guys is adding a yellow outline while the rest of the crew turn their backs and face the other train. They start again, outlining images, putting up big MOA logos, it’s hard to call these tags, they're not just sprayed letters. Between two pieces of art one of the guys writes ‘Another one…to the buff!’ before he opens the train doors and steps through and onto the next walkway, to the next train…another one to the buff.


An hour and a half after the first nozzle was pressed the guys are ready to leave. Looking along the trains it’s clear to see that their work here is done. Thirty-five spray cans have been used up.

As is the way with MOA while on the job, there is little talking; everybody seems to know what’s what. Except me that is, I get the feeling that had I have been looking the wrong way I would have turned around and found myself alone.


As soon as we are down on the tracks the entire crew breaks into a sprint, this is the only point at which the guys said I could use a flash, but it’s difficult to take pictures at full sprint down a train track. Any second you think your going to miss the sleeper and go face down.


After a hundred meters the guys break right and hurdle a low wire fence. One of them catches his foot and goes down skidding. He isn’t down for long though, someone has dragged him up and everybody is on the move again. We run through some woods, after ten minutes the crew ditch all their cans in a bush, now is not the time to get caught with them. The guards most certainly saw the flash going off, it was after all right by their hut, the police will be on the prowl already. There’s no point taking risks, if they get caught and convicted for the artwork they have just produced they will get four years in jail…and nobody wants that, do they?


MOA1 decides that it’s best to stay off the roads, he tells me not to use the flash, too many houses that could give away our location. We rejoin the train tracks and follow them to the next station, arriving at 5am, we sit shivering, waiting for the first train to take us back to the city.


The following day I went out in the daylight to photograph the graffiti on the trains. The trains ran constant, every couple of minutes in both directions. On average every other train had been hit up, 80% of those were hit by MOA. Just as I was about to call it a day it came along, the train that we had hit up the night before. The colours are so much brighter during the day; they dance along the tracks as the train idles into the station. Everybody on the platform notices, they appear to be drawn in, it really is a great piece, a real Monster Of Art




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that was in some mens magazine, i've got that one somewhere... front maybe? i remember they had a feature on giant from sf years ago too...

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Yeah it was FRONT magazinem, they also did a NEMA thing a while back, someone we all heard of works for em..

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Guest imported_Europe

And there was a huge 12oz thread with the interview and ALL the original photos months before it was printed in Front magazine.

The article first ran in a major danish newspaper. Alan Emmins then published it on his own website and made it public for everyone. The editor of Front wasnt very happy about this and the story was pulled from his website and from 12oz.

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its from



also i have in an old magic moments magazine with like a 6 page intervow in but fuck typing that up i might skan some flick in it tho it has an 8 car wholetrain and a few action shots of one of the peaces alredy posted

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Taken from http://www.graffiti.org/endstation/magazin...mag9/mag_9.htm:


Copenhagen S-trains pt. 1

Stories and facts taken from irrelevant internet resources. Copyright endstation


Copenhagen seems to be one of the most popular meeting points for european graffiti kids this year. To stand at the central station for a day is actually like standing inside the cover of a graffiti magazine. Or as a young kid said to me: I like it!




the trains are vandalized again - by the same people

At least every third train rolling into the central-station has major parts of its panels covered with colors. Sometimes the vandals spray all up over the windows. A bunch of full time workers are employed to clean the trains, but as the number of vandalized trains increases every year and especially during the summer those workers never get a chance to clean the trains before they are vandalized again - often by the same people. There is a gang of kids who all uses the same "tag" that they write over and over again: MOA (Monsters Of Art).


a new vandal squad?

Due to the huge problems and costs with graffiti this year DSB decided to put special trained guards inside the yards and trains.


beer, graffiti and girls make swedes and norwegians come

Every summer young travellers from all over Europe visit Copenhagen. Nice looking girls, cheap beer, Christiania, koeldskol (a drink) and graffiti. Sometimes there are so many tourists in the train yards the local writers gets mad. Swedish and Norwegian people are not too popular. Therefore Swedes and Norwegians who plan to visit a yard or lay up in Copenhagen are recommended not to look like Swedes and Norwegians.


rail facts

With its 5 main lines radiating out from Copenhagen C, the S-train network forms the backbone of public transit in Copenhagen, Denmark. The suburbs cluster in "fingers" along the radial S-train lines, leaving space for recreational areas between them. The S-trains are run by DSB, (Danske Statsbaner, the Danish State Railways). Service begins roughly at 5 AM (6 AM in weekends) and continues until around 1 AM in the night. All routes have fixed 20-minute headways; some of them operate only in peak hours, but all stations are served by at least one all-day line.




There's more flicks if you follow the link at the top... right time to go and find a new job or failing that go and put my head in the oven... too much internet...

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Originally posted by calculust

Every summer young travellers from all over Europe visit Copenhagen. Nice looking girls, cheap beer,


Rah, last time I was over there it was around £5-6 a pint...

Truely great city though...

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Guest imported_Europe


You got ripped off :lol:

There is plenty of cheap beer around. And compared to Sweden, where the articles author is from, Copenhagen is heaven when it comes to drinking.

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