Ghost Gallery

When he first began tagging in the ’70s, Ghost (aka Cousin Frank) would leave his girlfriend asleep in bed, take an hour-long bus ride to the subway station, and hide until the coast was clear. More than once it crossed his mind that it wasn’t necessarily normal behavior. In an interview with Underdog Studios, he recalls, “I’m asking myself, ‘What the fuck are you doing? People are going to the prom, living their lives and shit… you’re sitting in the fucking weeds, waiting to write on a train.’” Ghost emerged as an important early player in New York’s graffiti art movement, later making him public enemy number one for mayor Rudy Giuliani’s “quality of life” campaign. This exhibition of his new work (through May 4) reflects the same hurried graphic improvisation that was required of Ghost decades ago: deformed letters, spontaneous bursts of color, and underground comics references containing sly social satire. Bulging eyes and bold signatures distinguish most of his pieces; they smugly defy the scorn and censure he has constantly faced outside the gallery. BLVD Gallery, 2316 Second Ave., 448-8767, Free. 1 -6 p.m. ERIKA HOBART

Wednesdays-Saturdays. Starts: May 9. Continues through June 7, 2008

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