Tower Records Shibuya
Starts Tuesday, ends Oct. 28

Chaz Bojorquez is one of the pioneer graffiti writers of the East Los Angeles scene. His signature style is a hybrid of the provincial Los Angeles Cholo gang tagging that is characterized by Bojorquez’s fine arts background — he studied Chinese calligraphy at the California Institute of the Arts in 1968 — and uppercase Old English lettering.

Japanese graffiti magazine Kaze will show Bojorquez’s works at Tower Records Shibuya (www.towerrecords.jp) from Oct. 23 to 28 to celebrate the release of “Kamikazi Book Chaz Issue.” The graffiti artist is one of the seminal figures of Chicano culture in America. Active as a street tagger from the late 1960s to mid ’80s, Bojorquez not only heavily influenced skateboarding’s visual style in the early ’70s, he was one of the first to make the transition into fine arts circles. By obtaining gallery representation, he legitimized graffiti as a viable art form that was more than simply vandalism — it was an act of self-definition.

An eloquent analyst of graffiti culture and its purposes, Bojorquez will present a slide show on Oct. 27 at 7 p.m., and on Oct. 28 will hold a live painting event with Z¥$, an underground Japanese artist known for bold black symbols and typography reminiscent of Arabic script.

The show will travel to Three Tides Tattoo Gallery Space in Osaka, Nov. 2-5 (www.threetidestattoo.com).

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