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Black Film & The Underground Spirit: 1

Kangalee by Hallstrom

“…the new breed of American filmmakers need to turn a blind eye to the Reservoir Dogs of the American Beauties and express themselves. Black people will play Bob Marley’s “Get Up, Stand Up,” blast Wu-Tang’s most innovative tracks, and spout the poetry of Amiri Baraka or Sonia Sanchez and yet will still think that a film like “The Best Man” or “Shaft” is good enough for them. I know there are a lot of talented, radical, sensitive people out there. But where are they? Certainly not behind the cameras…”

— from “Towards a Black New Wave & Notes from the Underground,”  (Harlem, August 26, 2000)


(c) August 26, 2000; April 14, 2003; August 25, 2014 by Dennis Leroy Kangalee

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Optimo Graffiti

Dennis Leroy Kangalee, 5 Pointz, Queens NY 2012 [N.Fleck]

Dennis Leroy Kangalee, 5 Pointz, Queens NY 2012 [N.Fleck]

Upside the wall, across the metal gated closed shop–a reminder of days gone by,
signage of non-rusty times,

It was optimo graffiti- the lens of us all:

“The only thing that should be risked in the name of art is one’s reputation, one’s feelings, and if materials are needed – one’s own money.” Other than that you gamble with the spirit, the choices, the color. The only thing that should die for the art is one’s fears. Even entertainment, art’s little brother, should be benign when it comes to the infringing upon the welfare of others. Buster Keaton may have chosen to hurt himself, but not another living creature. Even the destruction of solid objects should be frowned upon – unless they are revealing something in their still-life state – about our own static, frozen human condition. Breaking plates is one thing. Breaking a horse’s leg? That’s something else, entirely.”

– Epitaph on the Wall of 5 Pointz, Long Island City, Queens NY<a

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