The Seventh Letter is an army of artistic individuals with roots not just in graffiti, but also in fine art, tattoo, graphic design, sculpture, photography, and music. Based in Los Angeles, The Seventh Letter’s tentacles have spread around the world to cities including San Francisco, Atlanta, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Jersey City, London, Paris, Milan, Naples, Budapest, Tokyo, Cologne, Seoul, and Bangkok.
If you live in a major metropolitan area, you’ve probably seen The Seventh Letter’s work—boldly rolled in white paint across a New York City wall, carefully worked onto a movie billboard in Australia, touring France on the side of a commuter train, or featured in a Los Angeles Gallery. Frank Book Chapter 41: The Seventh Letter features the world’s most notorious art collective, showcasing not only the crew’s art, but also the individual members’ interests and personal archives.
The Seventh Letter was founded in 2000 by the rumored leader of the infamous West Coast graffiti crews AWR MSK to act as a platform for crew members to showcase their work in the form of fine-art exhibitions, apparel, and other special projects.
Richard Colman and POSE both have shows opening on May 22 in Los Angeles—the same freaking night that Zio and I have a show opening in Culver City. (Our show is about food, so you should come to ours!) Anyway, I thought since they are both fans of each other’s art and lifestyles it would be best if they talked it out. It is Chicago-native POSE’s first solo show, and his first major showing in Los Angeles. Because Richard is awesome he has had many solo shows, but it is his return to Los Angeles after nearly a three-year absence.
So we both have solo shows that open the same night in L.A. Do you think you’re going to win? Does this mean we now have art beef?
I think we can work together and give the city a night it will never forget. How much do you smoke a day? Because if I don’t win the art thing, I am banking on winning the cancer race.
I’m not smoking as much these days, but since I’m a bit older I have a pretty decent head start on you and am confident I will win the race. I’m a little intimidated since you have a fancy press release already, but I’m copy and pasting now… When Roger asks you for something, then says, “I need it like yesterday,” what is the first thought that pops into your mind?
Anything else. I’m a pain in the ass that way and I like to make him sweat.
Would you be upset if KC and I were secretly reproducing your paintings just adding cooler hairdos?
No, they could use new hairdos.
My memory is getting fuzzier by the day, but I remember in 1996 or 1997 being on a road trip out west in Montana or South Dakota somewhere, possibly by an Indian Res, and seeing huge “BEAR & EVER” throwups; I think a pentagram was involved. Did you have anything to do with this or is this my imagination having its way with me?
Could be. We’ve got people out there.
I read in your press release that you have depicted some "DayGlo orgies.” Oddly enough, I attempted an epic DayGlo orgy painting, and every girl that has seen it so far—besides my wife—reacts saying I hate women (very untrue I promise). As a seasoned artist dealing in perverse imagery what might you suggest—more dude-on-dude action?
I say fuck them. Their opinion doesn’t matter. Listen to your wife.
Seriously though, what is the most absurd/annoying/interesting feedback you’ve ever had about some of your more perverse work?
People don’t really talk to me about my work.
So if I win the America’s Next Top Gallery Show contest will you get the infamous “Back to School Bear” tattooed on your neck? If I lose I would offer getting the clam with googly eyes and an “aw shucks" banner on my lower back. Deal?
Isn’t it going to hurt getting another tattoo over the existing butterfly you already have there?
Best food you ate in Chicago?
That heart attack-inducing pork on pork on pork sandwich we ate at that place near the gallery.
Sobriety—do you ever miss blackouts?
Have you ever entered the “shame spiral” when you are sober?
Who is Mando?
What is Mando?
What were you trying to get me to paint above my piece at Art Basel? Was it a tranny She-Hulk? She-Ra? Let me know because I feel like your advice could have really helped my career take off, and I’m not trying to miss the boat this year.
Just regular She-Hulk. I forget why though.
Words of advice for someone trying to live the dream, aka ditch the day job and just paint everyday?
Don’t ditch the day job. Do you know anyone who is hiring at the moment?
You have a pitbull, I have a mini pin, and Rog has two lesbian labrador retrievers. Thoughts?
The pitbull’s not mine. Do they make Snuggies for mini pins?
You coming to my show?
Yes, and I’m bringing my blackbook.
On a serious note, the work for your show looks amazing and inspiring as usual. See you there.
New Image Art Gallery 7908 Santa Monica Blvd. West Hollywood, CA 90046 T: 323.654.2192 www.newimageartgallery.com Open Tuesday – Saturday, 1pm to 6pm
Known as one of the best graffiti writers of all-time, SABER can also be described as a pioneer, legend, hero, Guinness World Records holder, and activist. Most of all though, he is an artist. An artist in the true sense of the word. One with keen and insightful observations and expressions of the world he lives in, the beauty that surrounds him, and the injustices that affect him. He has dedicated his entire adult life to the work he believes in, often at great risk to himself and his body.
Underneath his prolific throw-ups, burners, and tags lies someone who is just as capable with the paint brush as he is the spray can. He has proven to be able to masterfully create on a wall, canvas, or with wood or metal. SABER has shown at renowned galleries and has traveled throughout the world, blessing walls from Los Angeles and San Francisco to New York to Korea. He is also extremely thoughtful and well-spoken and the following is an interview AM was lucky enough to conduct with the artist.