This is the End…

It’s been over 4 months since this journey began and we have gone a great distance, the artists have left innumerable numbers of works across the continent, and I have been exhausted trying to keep up with them. It’s come to that point where I must part ways with them and leave them to continue their travels up to Mexico on their own. We have not been able to post as much as we would have liked these past few weeks since we have been moving fast up towards our final destination of Mexico City. Currently the artists and myself are here in Panama City. Since our last post the artists and myself have seen and been in various crazy experiences. Experiencing Machu Picchu together was a big highlight of this tour. Above got stabbed in the arm with a knife by 3 thieves in Quito, Ecuador but I will let him talk about that here…

“First of all, FUCK YOU THIEVES…AGAIN! All 4 of us (El Tono joined us in Lima, Peru up until Bogota, Columbia) arrived in Quito, Ecuador in the afternoon and met up with a local friend. Later that night we all went out for a night on the town in the center to have a good time. As Ripo, El Tono, and Rodrigo were waiting for my friend and I to walk back from the liquor store with some drinks when I suddenly got bombarded by 3 men from the street. The three thieves (pieces of shit) swarmed me, suddenly 2 of the pieces of shit grabbed and held each of my arms the other piece of shit stabbed through my jacket sleeve, then my hooded sweatshirt sleeve, and finally directly down into my left forearm all in 1 motion,.(and the knife stayed in my arm) With a large knife still in my arm the 2 other thieves ran their hands through both of my jacket pockets and pant pockets. My friend was lucky to only have 1 thief try and steal from him but because it was only 1 against 1 he was able to push him off and run away. I however was not that lucky! Unlike the FUCK YOU THIEVES pt. 1 post I was not able to even decide or have any option other than to comply with the thieves while again the knife was being applied with pressure into my left forearm. In the end the Thieves got only 13 dollars (they missed the 40 bucks in my smaller pant pocket) and I got a stab wound. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again that life is “Beautifully Ugly.”

Above: The night before I got stabbed in the left forearm (left is my dominant hand) I could not clinch a fist due to the stab wound and the damaged muscles. This meant I could not paint easy, if at all. However my friend and fellow artist El Tono was with us in Quito and since he uses tape to paint his “Tono’s” I decided to have some fun and get creative with some tape designs of my own. This is the result, Enjoy.

Ripo: Soy Tu Sueño (I’m Your Dream) painted on the Centro Cultural de España in Lima, Peru in a familiar color scheme. Some might see this as a sarcastic crack at the immigration issues between the two countries. Other people might see this piece and think of their own dreams and what they might be…

That being said and shown I must return to let you all know that this is to be the last blog post of this trip, but be assured that there is a great amount of work that has been done and didn’t make it onto the blog, and an even greater amount of work that will be done before the end of the tour that you will have to keep your eyes open for. But before we leave this travel log we have to say thank you to so many people. First and foremost Thank You to El Tono for being crazy enough to join us at least for a portion of this tour from Peru up to Colombia. Afterwards we want to thank El Codo and Cansei in Lima for helping us out with places to stay and organizing a great paint session. While in Bogota, Colombia we have to say the biggest thanks to Excusados and more specifically Aeon and Stinkfish for helping show us around their crazy city, going bombing, and inviting us into the coolest fucking clubhouse on earth, the Excusados studio. Now that we are in Panama City we are being helped out greatly by Cisco and Sumo, Thank you!

Thank you also to everybody who has written us and shown us support from down in South and Central America and from all over the world. It’s helped our spirits and is part of what has kept us going all this way. As we said there is a lot of work that has been done that won’t make it onto this blog, but we hope you enjoyed these last few words and images.


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Thanks Val-po

A big thank you to everybody who helped us out while we were in Valparaiso. We had a great time painting with, partying with, and crashing at your places, Charquipunk, Tombo, Adep and Aislap, Reks, Fisek, Hes, and Nast.


Ripo: Suerte (Luck)


Above: It was just a fun and chill sunday afternoon in the sun.


Ripo: Since most people walking by this piece don’t understand what it means it was the perfect opportunity to present this contrast of the Aesthetics of Words vs. the Meanings of Words. Plus I was laughing to myself the entire time painting this.


Above: LIVE/EVIL. This Word/Play is not only a message but a visual palindrome that can be read and enjoyed both forwards and backwards. This billboard is located in a highly visible area of Valparaiso. Jumping a few fences at night, taping two 3 meter extension poles together with duct tape and 4 hours later this word/play was completed.


Filed under Valparaiso, Chile

Enjoying Paraiso

So it was an easier time for some than for others in Valparaiso, but either way the artists made sure to paint… no need to say more, just enjoy the color and messages.

Above: This A-B-O-V-E letterstlye had the letters all stacked up and thrown around in a somewhat organized confusion manner. I like this photo with all the colorful shapes and forms.


Ripo: With my various injuries and such I wasn’t able to paint large while in Valparaiso, but I still made time to hit the beach. Dive In, not quite what you want to hear on a beach like this one, but the color and style do make it look tempting.


Above: If you saw the last post and the “Half-Hearted” piece then you know what my perspective and viewpoint are with the Word/Play´s. Since Ripo and I started this tour I´ve received many emails from people saying they were “Green With Envy” about this trip and the travels. So for all of you out there,  I dedicate this GREEN WITH ENVY piece to you.  Muchas Gracias!

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What Doesn’t Kill You…

When we arrived in Valparaiso, Chile we were stunned by the visuals of the city. The hills shoot up in every direction from the water front and are entirely inhabited, and the various neighborhoods are almost completely covered in graffiti. Almost like the favelas of Rio, but more graffiti and a lot safer. For a small city there is more graffiti here than we have ever seen. But the two artists have had very different experiences here. While Above arrived and immediately went off on his own to explore and paint Ripo’s messed up hand kept him visiting doctors and letting his body rest. But as he arrived in a bad state he will be leaving in an even worse one…


I arrived in Valparaiso with a bad hand and was forced to rest while Above went off painting. Soon after that I was bed ridden with a bad cold and a fever. I realized my body was getting tired and I needed rest. After 3 months on the road, painting as much as possible, traveling around, it definitely takes its toll on you. I was feeling beat but at the same time anxious that I wasn’t painting. Last week Adep from Aislap came to town and we met up to go paint a spot high above the highway. We met up and went out there. As we began to climb up the hill we realized the rocks were not nearly as stable as we had thought, that combined with a heavy bag of paint and we were suffering. As we got up to the same height as the ledge we were going to paint I was holding on to a rock with one hand and the bag of paint with the other, and that’s when the rock broke in my hand. I went plummeting nearly 10 meters sliding/falling down the side of the hill. Adep tried to grab my hand and only succeeded in sending himself down the hill as well. As we hit the bottom we immediately did a damage check. My chest was badly scraped up and his ankle was swelling up fast. We got our stuff together and covered in paint, blood, and gravel limped back home to clean ourselves up. I feel very lucky that we didn’t hurt ourselves worse, although this was the final message telling me that I need a break and not to push myself when I know I shouldn’t anymore. But at the same time I know that I want to take advantage of every moment I have while traveling. This was the motivation to push myself to climb up the hill, and this is the same motivation that is keeping me going throughout this entire trip. What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger and when you fall get back up, but take the necessary rest before you do.

Ripo: The red circle is where I was when I fell. Maybe some people will call me stupid for having tried this but you don’t get anywhere always taking the safe way out…

Above: This visual Word/Play is HALF-HEARTED but look close and you can get the full effect.

Above: Valparaiso has so much color in the city! I wanted to add some of my own. Here is a close up of a piece I painted.

Ripo: This was the first piece I did when I arrived in Valparaiso. There was a graffiti event in an old prison which made for an interesting painting environment and with my hand bandaged up I felt like a bird Unfit To Fly. The spacing of the letters didn’t turn out great but with my right hand still bandaged up and in a lot of pain I was forced to use both my left and right hand for this piece.

Above: This huge piece took 2 full days of painting in the hot sun. It might be a bit difficult to judge the size but its about 20 feet tall by 30 feet wide. My imagination gets the best of me when I visualize what the situation of a person Fighting A Liar, Lighting A Fire would actually look like? Trip out!

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Punchlines Might Hurt pt. 2

If you haven’t seen the previous post yet you’ll actually be getting the joke in the rite order…

Above: Take a good look up, down, sideways, backwards and all round. There are many hidden words, interesting shapes, and double contradictions! Thanks to everybody who sent in their ideas on the word/play.

Ripo: Being right-handed and painting with my right hand bandaged up made the details and size of this piece much more difficult. For some reason I also decided to make my life even harder by adding in cross hatching…


Above is left-handed, Ripo is right-handed

Ripo to Above: “Left Handers Are Never Rite”

Above to Ripo: “Yeah Right!”


Above (Word/Plays) & Ripo (Hands)

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Punchlines Might Hurt

It was a long 24 jaunt from Buenos Aires to Santiago, Chile, literally crossing the whole continent by bus. Luckily the scenery was quite beautiful once nearing and crossing the Andes. Ironically as we neared the mountain range they decided to play the Motorcycle Diaries on the bus. As Che and Alberto passed through here so did we, although with a slightly different mission and just about as little organization.

So upon our arrival we were greeted and shown around by the guys from Contragolpe and Risk. Big thank you for all the help and place to stay while we were in Santiago!

Above: This is a close up teaser of what is to come.  I believe there is enough hints there that you can figure out what the whole piece reads. Any guesses? email us your ideas.

Ripo: Anonymous vs. Famoso (Famous)

Above: Associations with words, sounds, situations, and past experiences are the main foundation (or spark) for the Word/Play paintings. I couldn´t help but associate this large brown river with the movie Charly and The Chocolate Factory and furthermore Willy Wonka´s chocolate mixing river.  Having to paint this piece while laying on my stomach and reaching down towards the chocolate water with the paint roller I felt like the character Augustus Gloop (the fat one) trying to reach in the river to drink more chocolate.

Ripo: A few days after arriving to Santiago my wrist began to swell up and hurt quite a lot. After going to a doctor I was informed I’m suffering from tendinitis, directly linked to the amount of painting I’ve been doing! I’m not going to stop painting, but look forward to some funky (perhaps shitty) lefty styles. For the time being I can only hope for a quick recovery!

Above (Yeah Right) & Ripo (Thumbs Up):  This is the punchline… Stay tuned for the joke!

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Adios Baires…

It’s been a long and unforgettable time here in Buenos Aires for all three of us. Although the end of the year meant a bit more enjoyment of the weather and parties than solid painting things certainly switched gear after the new year. We’ve had some intense moments, some amazing paint sessions, and more than anything have been impressed by the supportive, creative, and active community of artists that are taking full advantage of the relaxed atmosphere towards painting and working in the streets here. The biggest thanks must go out to Vomito Attack for hosting us for nearly 1 month during our long stay here!! Also thank you for the paint sessions, holiday cheer, too many parties, and just for being cool as shit… Chu, Tec and Fase Collective, El Tono, Blu, Tag Tool, Zumi, Maga, Sol, Kid Gaucho, Nazza Stencil, Maria, Nasa, Orilo, Sonni, BsAs Stencil, Run Don’t Walk, SMNR, Atypica, and anyone and everyone else we met while enjoying the hell out of this city. Hope to be back here soon!


Above:  Ashes to ashes we all…..


Ripo: Before showing you the final piece I painted in Buenos Aires, at the Mercado de Las Pulgas (Flea Market), I want to show the inspiration that was filling this place… old hand painted signs everywhere…


Above: If you saw the last post with the Do-Smilo-Cho you know noticed that it was all seperated and chopped up. For balance I passed the idea to my friend El Tono about doing a piece where all the letters were together with no breaks. ABOVELTONO.



Ripo: Somone once told me that a great work of art must be Timeless. Whether or not this is a great work of art isn’t up to me, but I do know that the history of the Flea Market I painted it on is unbelievably rich and I continued to learn more and more about it as I finished the piece. The space itself and the furniture and wares being sold within are a flashback to a time ago, although still continuing into the future. Not to mention the team of workers onsite who repair and restore old pieces daily, using timeless hand crafting techniques. This piece was something special for me…

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Filed under Buenos Aires, Argentina