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Chroniclers of urban youth culture

Graffiti is an important part of hip-hop culture - the corporate identity of the street. For Back to Tape, the three writers Scotty76, Fuego Fatal and Yugo visualise the idea of the book ‘Hip-Hop Culture - A Road Trip through Europe'.

As an element of hip-hop youth culture, it took shape in New York in the 1980s. "We are the ones of hip-hop culture." The Stuttgart graffiti artist should know. Together with Frankfurt's Fuego Fatal and Hamburg's Yugo, he turns the recently published book, ‘Hip-Hop Culture - A Road Trip through Europe’ into legally sprayed artworks. "The goal of Back to Tape was always to seek dialogue with the street - and to understand hip-hop holistically, not just as a music genre or clothing style," explains Hüls. This is how the idea was finally born to have three different scene greats of German graffiti culture accompany the work on a travel and cultural guide about hip-hop in Europe.

Growing up in the Emmertsgrund district of Heidelberg, Steve Patzschke, as he is called in real life, never let go of his paintbrush, even in kindergarten. He raps, sprays and dances. Today he is one of the most influential graffiti writers in Germany.

Jorge Labraña is known in Frankfurt under his hip-hop synonym Fuego Fatal. He is an ambassador for Frankfurt's subculture, rapped in legendary crews like Nordmassiv and Binding Squad, owns his own fashion label and combines street art and lifestyle in his studio.

Yugo has been part of the local graffiti scene in Hamburg for almost 30 years. The trained graphic designer is also inspired by the early pieces in New York, birthplace of the worldwide hip-hop culture. There, graffiti was a phenomenon long before today's youth culture: on 21 July 1971, The New York Times reported on the penchant of a Greek-born messenger boy to leave his pseudonym TAKI 183 on various walls during his errands through the city. When German television first broadcast the feature film Wild Style about the life of the teenage graffiti sprayer Zoro on 7 April 1983, creative street art spilled over into Germany.

These are open places where free space is made available for graffiti art on behalf of the city and writers of all ages and backgrounds can create modern street art together - like the gallery in Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt.

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Apr 30, 2021 at 13:54

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