After a conversation with Jason
July 5, 2001
De La Vega's work consists mostly of sentences written in chalk on the sidewalks of Manhattan. I first discovered his work on the corners of Upper East Side intersections about 3 or 4 years ago, and, with that self-centered presumption typical of all New Yorkers, I assumed it was something everyone knew about.
I took a lot of photos of his writing for a while, and even kicked around the idea of making a map of where his scrawlings were located, with links to what messages were written. But, well, that never really happened.
In the interceding years, I've become a bit more jaded about the artworks and haven't paid as much attention, despite the proliferation of simple cartoonish characters that have lately adorned the simple sentences. It's been nice to be reminded how fun and unique these simple displays of public art are, and how lucky I've been to see them these past few years.
Maybe I'll dig up some of my old photos of De La Vega's writings, or just take some new ones, since he's apparently extended his workspace to include the sidewalks of the East Village, where I work. Nice to have his little stick figures following me around, spouting such bon mots as "Even Jesus paid taxes".