Art By Lyfr

Day in the Lyfe Graffiti Magazine’s Online Blog Updated daily with graffiti, street art and original photography from around the world.

Tag: smear

I had an opportunity to exchange a few words with SMEAR RTH, one of LA’s most celebrated and hunted artists.  His name has been popping up in the LA newspapers recently in connection with the giant MTA roller bust.  Day in the Lyfe gives the man the chance to set the record straight.


DITL – Can you introduce yourself to all the readers?

SMEAR – I’m SMEAR from the urban sprawl that you all know as Los Angeles…writing on shit makes me happy; keeps me sane. I’m the founder of RTH (racing towards hell) and I like easy women.

DITL – As an artist what is the one thing you can’t live without?

SMEAR – The one thing that I can’t live without? That’s a tough one…I’d have to say experience. As an artist I wouldn’t be shit without experience, both good and bad. We are all a collection of our experiences.

Drunken Ira Hayes

DITL – What do you think about the fact that Los Angeles spent by some estimates over $837,000 to remove graffiti along the LA river?

SMEAR – The LA public libraries have cut their hours of operation…that money could have prevented that. There is no need to paint an ugly concrete insult to nature that nobody in Los Angeles even cares about…it’s just a bully tactic by the powers that be.

MTA Getting the Buff

DITL – Can you tell us anything new about your case?  Can you tell us what happened when the cops came to your house?

The sheriffs came to my house early one morning, dragged me outta bed and took me to jail…they said that I did this, and that I did that…when I saw the judge I went home cause they had no evidence…none. The case never went any further than those headlines in the papers…it was a lame, but successful, attempt by the city to get money from the federal government so that they could paint the entire river. They needed something big, something that would get the feds attention…they got their attention and they got their money. They used us as pawns in their game of political chess. The whole affair disgusts me deeply.

DITL – What is your definition of the word graffiti?

SMEAR – Graffiti means freedom…fun. Graffiti means adventure. Graffiti means discovery, exploration. I thank god up in heaven for giving us (me) graffiti.


DITL – Where do you draw your inspiration for your gallery work?

SMEAR – I draw the inspiration for my gallery work from life, death, sex, fear, despair, loneliness, madness, greed, hunger and everything else that makes us human. I draw inspiration in through my eyes and my ears, my mouth, from the tips of my fingers, from my dreams and my sweaty-sheets nightmares, from everything that I’ve ever heard, seen or thought…from experience.

DITL - Most people are always focused on MSK tell me about the art scene in LA?

SMEAR – The LA graff scene is a complex multi-leveled organism…there is so much to it that I don’t know where to start to even attempt to describe it…I’ll tell you what I’m into: I’m all about walking around late night by myself with a yellow and a black streak in my pockets…maybe about 200 stickers or so and just roam around until the streaks are dead and the stickers are gone…then go home as the sun is rising and lay in bed not being able to sleep because I keep playing the night over and over in my head, I did this almost every night(except when I was fucking somebody) for years and years on end, that kinda destruction adds up after a short while…I like the cutty shit…grimy alleys, rusty poles, hidden landmarks….I built my fame over years and years…I didn’t go for the quick glory. My shit will be around for at least another decade even if I decide to never pick up a marker or a can again.

Smear Poster

DITL – 2010 is here now so what can we expect?

SMEAR – In this foul year of our lord: 2010, what you can expect from me are a few good art shows… Maybe another newspaper article, or two, and a few surprises that I don’t really want to talk about as of right now.

DITL – any shout outs?

SMEAR – I want to give shout outs to my boys…they know who they are, to my brother, Alex, and to my Mom….I also want to tell my city, Los Angeles, that I love her with all my heart and soul…there Will never be another that can come between us.