Vallone Vexed By Graffiti Party – QNS.com

Vallone Vexed By Graffiti Party

Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. lost the city’s newest graffiti battle this past week in federal court to Ecko Enterprises.
Vallone had been dead-set on stopping the company’s proposed graffiti street party, set for next week, intended to launch the Ecko/Atari pro-graffiti video game entitled “Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure.”
But Marc Ecko, CEO of the urban clothing corporation, armed with support from the New York Civil Liberties Union, took their argument to federal court and won the right to hold their expo with a legal permit.
The event was to include several live graffiti demonstrations involving replica subway cars and container trucks.
“I will continue to focus on what promises to be an enjoyable day of free art and music for the city that is home to my operations,” said Ecko in an open letter to the City of New York.
Vallone’s outward distaste for the art of graffiti, and its top players, including Fernando Carlo, known to many as Cope2 — a renowned graffiti artist with a taste for vengeance — began a few years ago. As chair of the Public Safety Committee, he became the city’s leader in the fight against graffiti, drafting several anti-graffiti measures including the organization of an NYPD graffiti task force.
“Graffiti is not art, it’s a crime,” Vallone said.
Vallone’s initial run-in with Cope2 started after Time Magazine paid the artist to tag a billboard in Manhattan. Vallone condemned the company’s actions. Cope2 reportedly left a threatening message for Vallone to back off. Cope2 has since been arrested and apologized. Vallone moved to drop all charges and Cope2 was released, promising to never participate in illegal graffiti crimes.

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