Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Iz The Wiz

Though it's a week late, I just got word that Iz The Wiz has passed away. A subway graffiti legend, and, if you've seen the PBS documentary Style Wars, you'll know him as the somewhat unkempt guy who maybe looks a little older than you're average graffiti writer.

It seems like he's had some health problems that many see as a direct link to heavy use of aeresol paints. In the 2002 re-issue DVD of Style Wars, he appears weak, and was having trouble with kidney failure. From what I know, Lee and Lady Pink were touring with Iz to demonstrate the dangers of using aerosol paints without proper masks.

Iz was responsible for many classic pieces including the legendary John Lennon memorial full subway car he painted along with Lady Pink. He used a pretty old fashioned, simple style of lettering that was reminiscent of the earliest days of graffiti art, but was one of the greats none the less.

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