One night , while my book Graffiti 365 was a work in progress , Zephyr and I had a conversation about some of the photos I had secured. One of the photos I landed from FLINT… taken at his old alma mater, Art and Design High School in 1975, showed AL (BOMB 1) DIAZ and SHADOW as teens hanging out with some other kids amidst some immaculately rendered marker tags.
(L to R) SHADOW , UNKNOWN KIDS and AL DIAZ WITH THE GLASSES
Zeph’s reaction, a strange one as usual , was to say that FLINT… was a direct link to Jean Michel Basquiat. The entire SAMO… campaign that DIAZ and BASQUIAT executed was based on a name with a thought provoking quote succeeding it and three dots after the name SAMO… It got me to thinking that ZEPH had hit the nail on the head. I discussed this idea with FLINT… , stressing the importance of this connection. FLINT took it upon himself to test my hypothesis by going to interview his old high school buddy Al Diaz. The three part interview gives great insight between the FLINT…/DIAZ/ BASQUIAT connection and is an invaluable document of the connection between graffiti and street art. The interview contains anecdotes straight from the surviving member of the SAMO duo so check it out. I’m posting only PARTS 1 and 3 of the FLINTERVIEW since those reference Basquiat. The relevant parts start at 1:45 in on Part 1 and the 2:40 point in Part 3. It’s rare that writers get to tell their own stories in this culture, but this one is long overdue…