Larissa Kikol – SIGNED


“Wie könnte ich mir in der Zukunft noch eine Kunstbetrachtung vorstellen, die ausschließlich legale Kunst einschließt? Das wird nie mehr passieren. Wie konnte man so lange aus der Kunstgeschichte, aus der Gegenwartskunst die illegale Kunst ausschließen? Die meisten Museen machen es, die meisten Kunstmagazine, die meisten Feuilletons, die meisten Institutionen. Was sie alles verpassen! Was da alles nicht verstanden wird.”

When art historian Larissa Kikol published the 2019 graffiti volume of KUNSTFORUM International she approached the topic with a remarkable unbiased and refreshing view. With her brand new novel “SIGNED – Unterwegs mit der 1UP-Crew und Moses & Taps™” the reader is invited to join her, getting to know important players of the German scene in the years before and afterwards.

Instead of just analyzing the anonymous writers’ works and interpret them with an art historical background the author managed to track down writers from the Berlin based 1UP crew, TAPS, MOSES, SUSIE or RACHE. She took part in several activities from backjumps to wholetrain actions, was introduced to the meticulous preparations for illegal missions and met the protagonists again and again over years.

So the 328-paged softcover is way more than a superficial outsider report, but a passionate research for the intentions and drive of the writers as well as gallery owners from the scene like Nils Müller or Peter Michalski. Although graffiti writing seems to be a parallel universe to the traditional art world where Kikol is rooted, throughout the plot she continuously points out similarities for example in talks with Judy Lybke, Katharina Grosse or the Beltracchi couple.

SIGNED is half authentic travel journal and half in-depth studio visit all around Germany, whilst the actors in focus are graffiti writers who expanded the traditional namewriting game with often socially critical and political content or motivations. Between the lines you might spot the author’s desire for the dedication, risk-taking and passion in the common art world, as she has experienced it within the writing scene. The novel is separated into three main parts and several short chapters, offering entertaining insights no matter if you are more familiar with the writing or the art scene.

328 pages, 14,5 cm x 21,5 cm, softcover
Language: German
Release date: July 2023
Publisher: DCV

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