New York in the ‘eighties of the 20th century? Even those who were not yet born know the images: enormous compositions of letters and cartoon-like elements in a wide range of colours and styles, which moved with considerable speed on trains through the metropolis. Teenagers with ghetto blasters and a piece of cardboard demonstrated the most improbable moves, wherever they liked. Although the MTA and the New York authorities have done everything they could to suppress this sub-culture, hip-hop spread throughout the world and the ‘sub’ can now be omitted from the description.
In this video, Aruna Vermeulen, director of the Rotterdam HipHopHuis, talks about her background as b-girl and the essence of the movement, which is not just about the competitive element, but also and primarily about solidarity. Together with the legendary Mick La Rock, she pays a visit to the depositary of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, where canvases by various old school graffiti artists are stored. In addition, film-maker Gino Ragueb follows a Rotterdam graffer as he lays down a piece.