“Pleasure seeking self medicating can kill. This image has been a personal warning to me since the 90s. A reminder to stay away from drugs, gluttony and abundance. Many of our methods of self soothing can be fatal and or destructive.”
- Dave Navarro
Al Díaz is best known for his friendship with Jean-Michel Basquiat and collaboration on SAMO©…, a well-known graffiti project appearing in lower Manhattan from 1978 to 1980. The tag and text slogans became known quickly on the streets and in the local newspaper media because of their wit and sardonic humor. Since Basquiat's rise to fame, the SAMO©… legend has become a globally recognized graffito and has been celebrated as cutting social commentary throughout contemporary art history. Al Díaz's career spans five decades. Born and raised Puerto Rican in New York City, he was known by age 15 as a prolific and influential, first-generation subway graffiti artist. During the early 70s, his popular and recognized name was "BOMB-1." After high school and the SAMO©… period, Díaz began to practice musical percussion, and created recordings, including a performance on Basquiat's collectible 1983 early hip-hop album, Beat Bop which also featured Rammellzee and K-Rob. After being "on the scene" during the 80s Avant-garde art boom, for many years Díaz honed his craft as a foreman/lead carpenter in the New York building industry. He resurrected his SAMO©…moniker publicly in late 2016 and works with found transit signage to create his “WET PAINT” series of text-orientated collage pieces.
Dave Navarro is best known as a member of the alternative rock band Jane's Addiction and as a former member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. He also released one solo album “Trust No One.” Navarro has also been a member of the Jane's Addiction spin-off bands, Deconstruction and The Panic Channel. Allmusic's Greg Prato described him as "one of alternative rock's first true guitar heroes", with an eclectic playing style that merges heavy metal, psychedelia, and modern rock.
Outside music, Navarro is host and one of the judges on Ink Master, an American tattoo competition reality show now in its eleventh season on Paramount Network and an avid art enthusiast.
He creates his personal and street work under the moniker lifeafterdeath.
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