In 990, inspired by acclaimed graffiti artists Hex and Mear One, David began doing graffiti on bus benches, billboards and back alleys across the city.
To get an understanding on the incredible life and individuality of David Choe I strongly recommend checking out the documentary Dirty Hands: The Art and Crimes of David Choe. Obsessed with traveling, Choe has made one expedition after another, venturing everywhere from the jungles of the Congo to painting graffiti and murals around the globe, crafting a self-image and life history that’s an art piece in and of itself.
In 2007, he described his “dirty style” painting aesthetic to Fecal Face webzine, saying, “The dirty styles rule all other schools and styles. The layering, the personal touch to everything. I’m from the school of dirty styles, but it’s more than just style and surface, it’s every dirty thing that’s inside you.”
As he told Juxtapoz magazine, “I never stopped graffiti. It influences my fine art, with the quickness and immediacy of it. I use oil paint like it’s acrylic, because I can’t wait for it to dry. I love fucking with mediums and seeing how they react to different mediums, but I always considered graffiti separate from my art. I always looked at it as destructive, anarchist, political, spiritual, and mostly just fun. It was a release from being cooped up, hunched over drawing tiny drawings with rapidographs and mechanical pencils. Fuck everything I’m doing at home, I‘m going out late at night to have an affair with the streets. I’m not worried about mistakes, or trying to make shit look right, or fame, or writing a tag over and over—I’m looking to destroy, pure vandalism, and maybe somewhere in between the process I can achieve enlightenment, fulfillment, and redemption, but probably not. You can’t ever really describe the feeling until you’ve stolen two cans of Krylon flat black and hit the streets with reckless abandon. The freedom of speech, and scale of the words and pictures, is humbling.” (Juxtapoz Magazine, 2007.)
His trademark image of a sharp toothed whale is recognizable and can be found in many cities across the globe.
For more on David Choe check out this article: The Redemption of David Choe | Juxtapoz Magazine | Matthew Newton | Matthew Newton