History Of American Graffiti



RRE Service

Custom Publishing


Create the premier textbook on graffiti.


RRE spent more than five years interviewing, researching and collecting images for the book. RRE interviewed more than 500 people from around the United States and the world, and dug through as many photo collections. RRE’s editorial staff wrote, fact-checked and edited all text in the book, and an in-house designer designed and laid out the book from cover to cover.


Unprecedented in scope, The History of American Graffiti is the definitive story behind the most influential art form of the last 100 years. Tracing the evolution of the medium from its early freight-train days to its big-city boom on the streets of New York City and Philadelphia, and to its modern-day influences, this volume is a compelling look at the key moments, places and players in an art form distinctly American in flavor yet global in its reach.

Featuring behind-the-scenes stories and profiles gleaned from more than four years' worth of interviews with graffiti's most prominent names, as well as its lesser-known pioneers, authors Roger Gastman and Caleb Neelon provide an insider's perspective on the history of the medium. Not only do they reveal the most popular trends and styles that have dominated the scene for the last 50 years but they also provide a thorough examination of the regional differences among major American hubs—New York, Los Angeles, the Bay Area, Chicago—and under-the-radar scenes in cities like Washington, D.C., Boston and Miami. All told, more than 25 American cities are profiled, making this the most comprehensive volumes on the subject.

With more than 1,000 photographs—the majority of which are seen here for the first time—The History of American Graffiti captures the look and feel of a genuine American art form with exceptional clarity and detail. An instant classic, this book is the ultimate resource to which aficionados of the art form will turn again and again, and which the uninitiated will regard as the definitive tutorial of all that is graffiti.


The History of American Graffiti was distributed worldwide, available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, unique boutiques, museum gift stores and college campuses.


The History of American Graffiti is the first truly comprehensive history of graffiti’s secretive, illegal culture. If there were a college course on graffiti, this would be its textbook.” – Shephard Fairey, artist

“Roger Gastman and Caleb Neelon have written the definitive history of the origins of the graffiti styles that emerged in Philadelphia, New York and Los Angeles in the early 1970s and inspired young artists around the world.” – Jeffrey Deitch, director, Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art

“Graffiti is a much-maligned and misunderstood social movement, which I am proud to be a part of. This book offers the definitive perspective on graffiti—finally, we have a historical textbook for the most colorful art form modern society has known.” – David Arquette, actor

“When the American graffiti movement emerged, it was ‘outsider’ art, youth art and public art all at once. It shattered racial and economic segregation and provoked political and generational reprobation. Roger Gastman and Caleb Neelon’s The History of American Graffiti is as sweeping, provocative and monumental as the movement itself.” – Jeff Chang, author, Can't Stop Won't Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation