Henry Chalfant was born in 1940 in Sewickley, Pennsylvania, and lives and works in New York City. He is one of the foremost authorities on New York subway art as well as hip hop and underground culture. His photographs record hundreds of ephemeral, original graffiti art works that have long since vanished. In 1984, Chalfant published the book Subway Art, which he co-authored with photographer Martha Cooper. The book and a related film captured aerosol art culture during one of its peak periods in New York City, becoming definitive documents of this time. Chalfant's photographs have been displayed internationally, and he has lectured extensively on the topic of graffiti at institutions such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, P.S. 1, The Bronx Museum of the Arts, and the Cartier Foundation in Paris.


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About Henry Chalfant

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Henry Chalfant (American, b. 1940) is an Pennsylvania-born photographer and videographer most notable for his work on graffiti, breakdance, and hip hop culture. A graduate of Stanford University, where he studied classical Greek, Chalfant started out as a sculptor in New York in the 1970s, turning to photography and film as part of an in-depth study of hip-hop and graffiti art. His photos are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, and the Carnegie Institute in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The PBS documentary Style Wars, which he co-produced, is considered the seminal documentary on graffiti culture.

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I Love Zoo York by ALI, 1981, 2013, 2013
Kodak Professional Endura Metallic Paper
12.8 x 59.5 in (32.51 x 151.13 cm)
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Henry Chalfant
I Love Zoo York by ALI, 1981, 2013
  • Dimensions
    12.8 x 59.5 in (32.51 x 151.13 cm)