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Martin Wong Graffiti Collection


In 1994, the Museum of the City of New York was given a remarkable resource – the graffiti art collection assembled by the painter Martin Wong throughout the 1980s.

This pioneering collection, acquired at a time when graffiti was not highly regarded in the art world, includes more than 300 objects – including some 50 artists’ black books along with more than 100 canvases and over 150 works on paper. Among them are the earliest surviving examples of work by artists who went on to have important careers in the arts, fashion, and music industries, including Jean-Michel Basquiat, Christopher "Daze" Ellis, FUTURA 2000, Keith Haring LA II, LADY PINK, and Lee Quiñones. Wong, who with Peter Broda had created the short-lived Museum of American Graffiti on Bond Street in the East Village in 1989, was dedicated to preserving the history of this important art movement. When he was diagnosed with AIDS in 1994, he made the decision to donate the entire collection to the Museum of the City of New York. Martin Wong died in 1999 at age 53.

Beginning February 4, 2014, never-before-seen highlights of this collection will be on view at the Museum of the City of New York as part of the exhibition, City As Canvas: Graffiti Art from the Martin Wong Collection.

The first catalog of the collection, City As Canvas: New York City Graffiti from the Martin Wong Collection was published in fall, 2013 and is available in the Museum Shop.
Talking Quick

Talking Quick

Graffiti paint on a refrigerator door

Robot with Spray Can

Robot with Spray Can

Leonard Hilton McGurr (1955-) is known as Futura 2000.

Yellow Circle with Penis Below

Yellow Circle with Penis Below

Leonard Hilton McGurr (1955-) is known as Futura 2000.

Juvenile Diabetes Foundation

Juvenile Diabetes Foundation

Leonard Hilton McGurr (1955-) is known as Futura 2000.

Hotel Amazon

Hotel Amazon

little round addition u.l.c.

Signature with Big Green D

Signature with Big Green D


Pink Spraycan

Pink Spraycan

Leonard Hilton McGurr (1955-) is known as Futura 2000.

"Wicked Gary Card Collection"

Collection of graffiti tags made on cardboard rectangles, mounted in a wood and plexiglass frame.

Abstract Techno-symbolism

Abstract Techno-symbolism


[Untitled.]

[Untitled.]

Leonard Hilton McGurr (1955-) is known as Futura 2000.

Breakfast at Baychester

Breakfast at Baychester


"The Lions Den", study #1


Breakfast at Baychester

Breakfast at Baychester

"Well, back to work" Charlie...

Star of the Ghetto

Star of the Ghetto


SP! [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

SP! [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

VIMEN. All citi kid. KA crew.

Sharp [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

Sharp [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


Sharp [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

Sharp [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


Lost the Outline Sorry Henry [Torn page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

Lost the Outline Sorry Henry [Torn page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


Subway Sign (All persons...)

Subway Sign (All persons...)


[Notebook page with tags of various members of the Ex-Vandals.]

[Notebook page with tags of various members of the Ex-Vandals.]

Tags on recto include those of Big Time Glass Top, Conrad is Bad, Wicked Wesley, Scooter, Sugar Sweet,...

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


Gothic Futurism

Gothic Futurism

Artist attributed.

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]

[Page from Noc 167's sketchbook.]


[Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

[Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


Sharp [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

Sharp [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


Sharp & Delta II [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

Sharp & Delta II [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


Sharp 1 Delta 2 [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]

Sharp 1 Delta 2 [Page in sketchbook belonging to Delta II.]


[Tagged inside front cover Joey TDS's black book.]

[Tagged inside front cover Joey TDS's black book.]


Paze [Inside front cover of sketchbook belonging to Lady Pink.]

Paze [Inside front cover of sketchbook belonging to Lady Pink.]

The new one "3"... Erni © Roc... Commitment to excellence... Rebel yell!

Happy Birthday Dotty

Happy Birthday Dotty

Addressed to the artist's girlfriend.;

The Lions Den

The Lions Den

Study #2.

Love iz a Battlefield

Love iz a Battlefield


Conceptional Thesis

Conceptional Thesis


[Tagged inside front cover of TDS's piece book.]

[Tagged inside front cover of TDS's piece book.]

Includes a tribute to Bear 167.

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