Evan Roth. Graffiti Taxonomy : New York. 2011

Evan Roth Graffiti Taxonomy : New York 2011

  • Not on view

Cataloguing characters from graffiti tags in New York and Paris, Roth has assembled two taxonomies of graffiti letterforms, capturing regional styles, geographic ranges, commonalities, and deviations. For the Paris study, Roth isolated the ten most commonly used letters (A, E, I, K, N, O, R, S, T, and U) and chose eighteen tags in uppercase and lowercase letters to represent the diversity and range of each character, from simple to ornate. The Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, which commissioned the Paris work for the 2009 exhibition Born in the Streets—Graffiti, displayed these tags on the Museum's exterior, transforming the building into a canvas and learning tool. Roth's cataloguing of the alphabet in New York is ongoing; on his website he calls for leads from the public, thus crowdsourcing the gathering of specimens.

Gallery label from Talk to Me: Design and the Communication between People and Objects, July 24–November 7, 2011
39 3/8 x 39 3/8" (100 x 100 cm)
Gift of the artist
Object number
Architecture and Design

Installation views

We used machine learning to identify this work in photos from our exhibition history.