Miami Graffiti OG Hec One Talks 30 Years In The Game

Categories: Art
Hec One at Fountain Art Fair 2012
Hec One Love is a Miami graffiti pioneer who started bombing the streets in 1983.

His main stomping grounds were the southwest area of Miami-Dade, and he ran with a crew, Alive 5, that claims Miami's first wall of fame, and first graffiti art gallery show.

Today, Hec is still heavy in the arts, and we caught up with him curating a Miami Street Collective show at Fountain Art Fair. Here's what he had to say about starting out, and where he's going.
Where are you from?
I'm from Miami. I was born in Cuba and moved here in 1982. By '83 I was already chilling at the Beat Club, by Bird and 97th Avenue. Run DMC came through there, Mantronix, DJ Mohammed, a lot of shows through this small place.

What was the graffiti scene like back then?
I was on a mission, one of a few kids doing it the way I was. In '84 and '85 no one was doing big pieces in Miami. But after Style Wars came out, it changed almost overnight from wak stick letters to arrows and connections. The book Subway Art was huge too. That and the movie were groundbreaking. Everybody was talking about it. There were several dozen of us in the hip hop scene, with the shoes, and the laces, and the breakers, but back then we had to wait for WPBT to show the movie and someone would record it, and then ten people would record that copy, and it would get messed up from watching it so much. We used to have to call the program director of the station just to get them to play it.

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Authorized and invited murals are awesome. That isn't graffiti. Graffiti is done without permission. Graffiti vandals impose themselves on the rest of the community.  Unlike commissioned public art, there is no selection process. Doing graffiti requires a mindset that justifies defacing the property of others. Graffiti is a costly and destructive crime of vandalism. Ping me at if I missed something. Placing your tag name, or that of your crew all over our neighborhoods isn't art.

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