Tag, You’re It
Street art finally gets gallery validation
If there?s one thing we learned from the sudden whitewashing of 5Pointz (aside from utter sadness), it?s that street art is fleeting.
Lucky for us, a handful of graffiti devotees preserved the movement?s early days, and two different gallery shows are finally giving the art form its rightful due.
?Moving Murals? Spray-painted subway cars were the longtime focus of photographers Henry Chalfant and Martha Cooper (particularly during the heyday of the late ?70s and ?80s). Cultural nonprofit City Lore has chosen 850 of their shots to cover the walls of its new L.E.S. gallery. Through July 10; City Lore, 56 E. First St. at (First Ave.); 212-529-1955 or citylore.org
?City as Canvas? From photographs of ?80s art itself to random ephemera (read: Keith Haring?s notebook doodles), East Village resident Martin Wong amassed one of the world?s most impressive street-art collections (being a fellow artist and friend to the original pioneers helped his cause). He donated the works to the Museum of the City of New York in 1999, but they?re just now seeing the light of day. Through August 24; Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave. (at E. 103rd St.); 212-534-1672 or mcny.org