Style Writing Historian
What the world knows as “graffiti” is accurately called Style Writing, a term coined by Style Writing pioneer Phase 2. Graffiti is a much more broad term and includes words or drawings done, without permission, in a public space. In this context, graffiti has been with modern humans since prehistoric times. Style Writing is a more specific and recent version of graffiti that has taken on a life of its own. Style Writing is a global culture based in writing ones given or selected name or word, frequently, in varying levels of complexity and styles, often in places that are in public view or within view or other writers. Style Writing was created by children in the ghettos of Philadelphia and New York City in the 1960s. Rap Music (which consists of an MC and a DJ) and breakdancing have a similar origin story forming and developing in the ghettos of New York City in the early 1970s. In the case of Style Writing, Rap Music and breakdancing, they were created out of a need by African American and Latinx children to be wholly included in the society and institutions in which they lived. They were however not included. To the contrary they were marginalized as a systematic practice. The creation and formation of the global culture known today as Hip Hop began as a form of protest to the lack of inclusion, equity and justice that was baked into United States society. Hip Hop is an urban youth take on the classic arts disciplines of music, visual art and dance. Style writing being the visual art component repurposed fairly benign household items (a magic marker and aerosol spray paint) and used them to create art. Like rap music and breakdancing it was something the world had never seen before.
The History of Style Writing is complex. It first occurs as a favorite past time of a small group of High School students in Philadelphia in the mid-1960s. Several years later in the late 1960s it begins to occur in New York City. Like wildfire it spreads throughout these cities. Almost immediately subway trains in both cities become prime targets. Over the next 20 years what began as frequent stylized name writing blossomed into a global phenomenon and because of its vastness, there are many many stories.
My goal as a historian is to document andpreserve those stories and artifacts. Also to work to create a space where we can ensure the stories and artifacts can live for future generations The Steel Wheels Collection is the personal collection of Antar Fierce and Steel Wheels Inc. Individuals interested in learning more about the collection can contact Antar Fierce at firstname.lastname@example.org