We fought the law...and we wonI don't know what's more fun, writing these things or reading some of your responses
How does that song go, "I fought the law and the law..."? Oh, wait. WE won. Never mind. Thanks for all of your support and I promise to hit you back on the game after tomorrow's exciting event. Come by if you happen to be in New York and help celebrate an undeniable part of American pop culture and our first amendment rights to freedom of expression... - Marc
DESIGNER MARC ECKO WINS LAWSUIT AGAINST NEW YORK CITY; GRAFFITI ART EXHIBITION TO TAKE PLACE AS PLANNED
Federal Court Orders Immediate Reinstatement of Street Permit for August 24th Block Party
(New York, NY), August 22, 2005 - Fashion designer and entrepreneur Marc Ecko, on behalf of his company *ecko unltd., today announced a favorable decision in a lawsuit the Company filed against New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the City of New York in the United States District Court, Southern District of New York, on Friday, August 19.
As a result, the first-of-its-kind street festival, free and open to the public, will be held as originally scheduled on August 24th on 22nd Street between 10th and 11th Avenues from 12:00PM - Dusk. The event will feature ten 48-foot-long by 8-foot-high replicas of the legendary NYC transit blue-bird subway cars, which will be transformed into contemporary urban works of art by 20 renowned graffiti writers.
Commenting on the court's decision, Mr. Ecko stated, "Today is further affirmation that graffiti is without question the most powerful art movement in recent history. This event was conceived as a tribute to the roots of graffiti culture, a time in New York City's history that I chose to believe was worth fighting to preserve. I never envisioned having to go to Court when we started working with the City on this event 10 months ago, but was left with no other choice when the City asked us to change our chosen art canvas and, as such, tried to censor my first amendment rights and those of these great artists by attempting to dictate how we express ourselves.
"Graffiti is an art form without borders, one which touches people of every gender, age, race, income class and political affiliation on a daily basis and today's decision is further affirmation that it is here to stay. Graffiti does not, as some in city hall have claimed, have to be a gateway to crime. It can also be a gateway to opportunity and success when channeled properly, and I hope that the Mayor accepts my offer to join me on Wednesday as we channel our creative energies together." Gregg Donnenfeld, Assistant General Counsel for *ecko unltd. added, "We are extremely pleased, though not surprised, by Judge Rakoff's recognition that graffiti is indeed a legitimate form of art, and that the City has no right to dictate how that art is expressed. Marc Ecko's block party will therefore proceed as planned, with a live graffiti art demonstration open to the public at no charge, with the world's top graffiti artists using mock subway trains as their art canvases." "Should the City attempt to appeal the Judge's decision, we will continue to fight for our First Amendment rights, all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary. However, at this point we do not anticipate any appeals, and instead just look forward to what will be a spectacular art event for all of the public and New York's art community to celebrate.," Donnenfeld continued.
*ecko unltd. thanks attorney Dan Perez of the Kuby & Perez law firm for his great work on this case, proving again that he's one of the top First Amendment lawyers in all of New York, if not the country, and also the New York Civil Liberties Union for its continued support in this effort.