Cappadonna making guest appearance at NYC Arts Cypher graffiti contest this Saturday
NYC Arts Cypher hosts party for budding legal graffiti artists
by Jodi Lee Reifer/Staten Island AWE Thursday September 17, 2009, 4:00 PM
Photo courtesy of NYC Arts CypherUrban artist/actor Gano Grills presents "GETBIZY" on Sept. 19, a black book party for established and budding graffiti artists -- of the legalized variety.
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- In the 1950s, a little black book might have contained a long list of eligible, hot chicks.
In 2009, a black book is the domain of legit graffiti artists.
The NYC Arts Cypher -- 12 Broad St., Stapleton -- celebrates the scene that gave rise to the definition with two programs.
First up, urban artist/actor Gano Grills presents Sept. 19's "GETBIZY," a black book party for established and budding graffiti artists -- of the legalized variety. Body artists paint models and DJ Beats Master E (BME) spins, while marker impresarios create their work in black books. The best art work earns a cash prize. Special guests will include Lask, Cappadonna, Doves FC, Joey TDS, Jamestop and Ink76, among others.
"We're trying to give people an idea of what the culture is about and to be able to network with respected people in the culture," says Charlie Balducci, founder of the nonprofit Arts Cypher.
Sponsors such as Tuff City, 1UP Sneakers and Montana give away schwag. Graffiti artist Chase cooks up a Spanish feast for the occasion. Doors open at 7 p.m. Admission: $15.
The following week, the Arts Cypher launches its next round of M.U.R.A.L.: A series of workshops that connects teens with professional urban artists such as Grills, best-known for his version of the Wu-Tang Clan logo, and takes them on trips to such places as 5 Pointz, a giant Long Island City warehouse where graffiti is legally permitted.
The Arts Cypher hosts an orientation Sept. 22, 4-5 p.m. The goal of the program is to get teens to practice their art constructively -- and legally. The program is open to ages 13-18. Space is limited. Teens must have basic art skills and interest.
The free program is sponsored by Richmond County Savings Foundation. For more information, call 718-981-8510 or e-mail CharlieB@NYCArtsCypher.com or GanoDee@gmail.com.