Sunday, August 14, 2011

Rest In Peace King Kase2 The King Of Styyyyyyyyyyyyle

I woke up this morning to find that Kase 2 had passed away.

I thought it would only be appropriate to take the time to explain Kase 2's importance to graffiti and to me personally. For those of you who read Super Duty Tough Work and are not familiar with graffiti or the documentary Style Wars the actual phrase "super duty tough work" comes from one of Kase2's numerous quotes in the film. You could even argue that Kase2 IS that movie. His quotes and scenes are what made "Style Wars" so entertaining. In a close second place would be Cap with his "N*ggas know" line, but that line ain't even close to touching any of Kase's superb quoteables.

Kase2 did more for the sub-culture of graffiti and style writing in that film than a lot of people realize. Probably the most obvious being that he made the viewer want to BE a graffiti writer. I'm sorry if that statement sounds lame to you, but that is the truth. You read any interview from some of the best writers in history and usually their story starts with something along the lines of "My friend showed me 'Style Wars' on vhs," or "I saw 'Style Wars' on PBS one night and that's when I wanted to start writing," that is how nearly every one of their writing careers starts. So if "Style Wars" is the point of entry for most writers and Kase2 is the stand out writer within the film then you could say that Kase2 is probably a starting point or style catalyst for decades of writers. Obviously, that is not the case for every great writer, but the logic is solid none the less.

Out of all his famous quotes I think the best is when he succinctly summed up THE reason why people write graffiti:

"People look at a person, what you write on trains? Oh, you vandalism and all that. Yeah I vandalism alright, but still in general I know what I'm doin. I did somethin' to make yo eyes open up. Right? So why is you talking bout it for?"


And there is the quintessential definition of why people do it.

He is simply saying "Yes, I vandalize, but I know what I am doing. I did something that made you look. That is why I did it."

There are a lot of personalities within the sub-culture that is graffiti, but there was only one Kase2. I never met him, but I knew many that had and thankfully he was documented on film so that future writers can continue to be inspired by his style and maybe even more importantly his gift of gab.


  1. Damn. Your words are so on point. Thanks for telling people the truth. Another side note to Kase 2's amazing ability ... is that he did all that with ONE ARM.

  2. This is the first decent thing I have seen written about kase 2 since his passing, I think it's spot on, 100% of why I write and paint the way I do is down to seeing stylewars and like you say your either impressed by one of two people and that's the direction you go.
    It's a real sad shame personalities like that go. But he managed to put that computer rock style into almost all modern graff now, the impact he had was immense and that's truly getting up

  3. Great tribute my brother. Kase2..RIP

    -EURO, NYC

  4. I fully agree with this post. I'm from Chile and while I was growing up I was not very interested in graffiti. That was till I saw Style Wars on TV for the first time. I remember that after I watched the whole thing I decided to start writing grafiti and it was all thanks to Kase 2. I used to think "well, he's got one arm and I have both of em...I guess I can do it too".
    RIP Kase 2
    "King of what??? King of STYYYYYYLE!"
    "I got styles already that's more complex that nobody know about. I mean super duty tough work, huh?"

    ps: I fucking love this blog becuz is the realest shit out there. Keep up the good work