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Martha Cooper - Spray Nation


288 pages
Edited by Roger Gastman
Photograph(s) by Martha Cooper
20 x 30 cm
Language: English
Publisher: Prestel
Limited edition box set of 1000 copies

Culled from the extensive archives of one of the most renowned graffiti photographers of all time comes this remarkable collection of previously unpublished images of New York’s graffiti scene in the 1980s.

If you were a graffiti writer in 1980s New York City, you wanted Martha Cooper to document your work—and she probably did. Cooper has spent decades immortalizing art that is often overlooked, and usually illegal. Her first book, 1984’s »Subway Art« (a collaboration with Henry Chalfant), is affectionately referred to by graffiti artists as the »bible«. To create »Spray Nation«, Cooper and editor Roger Gastman pored through hundreds of thousands of 35mm Kodachrome slides, painstakingly selecting and digitizing them. The photos range from obscure tags to intimate portraits, action shots, walls, and subway cars painted inside and out. They are accompanied by heartfelt essays celebrating Cooper’s drive, spirit, and singular vision. The images capture a gritty New York era that is gone forever. And although the original pieces (as well as many of their creators) have been lost, these resplendent photos feel as immediate and powerful as a subway train thundering down the tracks.

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Limited Edition Box Set

For Martha Cooper’s latest release, Beyond the Streets dove deep into her unpublished archive of early 1980s NYC graffiti. Working closely with Cooper, BTS selected and assembled over 800 photos, carefully culling from dozens of boxes of slides, many unopened for decades to create this exclusive box set.

Box Set Includes:

Spray Nation: 1980s NYC Graffiti Photographs (SIGNED)
Landscape, hard-cover book, 4C on 150gsm silk paper
With hand-signed vellum sheet
30.48 x 20.32 cm
288 pages

The Outtakes: Photographs from New York City, 1980-1984
Soft-cover book, 4C on 115 gsm silk paper
30.48 x 20.32 cm
224 Pages

Postcard Set
Set of 6 postcards in a printed envelope, featuring Martha Cooper photographs
4C on 270gsm paper board
12.7 x 17.78 cm

4C, 150 gsm Gloss Art Poster, Folded
118.8 x 84 cm