American Apparel Sez We Are Not the Splasher(s)!


Yep, the Lafayette Street billboard advertising Neckface’s Vans got splashed too.

To brief all you super-duper latecomers, a quick primer on the “Splasher”: there’s an anonymous bandit (who may or may not be an entire crew of art-school drop-outs) skulking around New York City and Brooklyn at night, throwing buckets of paint on street-art pieces that’ve been running for a while (Shepard Fairey, Swoon, and a Banksy have been hit), and wheatpasting up these mumbo-jumbo one-sheets about how street “art is the excrement of action.” Biggest irony-that’s-so-obvious-it’s-not-even-ironic? Between the Times, the Guardian UK, and Wired Online, the “Splasher” has been the biggest street-art development in months since 11 Spring Street, yet one of the points seems to be destroying the hype surrounding it.

But newsflash: Mr/Miss “Splasher” has actually been active since before 11 Spring. Flickr user Niznoz photographed one of those manifestos as far back as November; and if you look closely at the photo accompanying a piece about 11 Spring Street that appeared in the Times last December (right under your noses, NYT!), the then-unnamed “Splasher” had tossed white paint and pasted two manifestos on the snow-globe painted on the left. So my dear Masters of the Obvious, give an anonymous art-dick(s) a comic-book-villain name and the front page of the Metro section = the more he/she/it plays the role of the villain!

The Splasher’s actually kind of a genius.

There’ve been a few whispers about the identity of this high-profile figure, but probably the most interesting (and publicly documented) theory that rippled around was yesterday’s suggestion that the Splasher was an American Apparel guerrilla-marketing campaign gone extremely well.

Image nicked from Imjustsayin’s Flickr

Of course, American Apparel says no way. “It’s definitely not part of any American Apparel campaign,” an AA spokeswoman told us yesterday. “We do not deface art, we celebrate art.”

Since we’ve already been known to deconstruct the Splasher‘s actions, here’s our theory. The Splasher doesn’t splash his own thesaurus-laden jibberjabber, he/she/it splashes street art, so somebody in Billyburg is now splashing the Splasher.

As for the American Apparel ad? We’re guessing the Splashing-the-Splasher’s message is something like this: Splasher, you are as street as naked hipsters in kneesocks!

Which brings us to another point: Vans, you wanna offer the Splasher a shoe deal? Y’know, if we had PhotoShop on this machine (hint, Mr. Bossman), we’d use our limited skillz to mock up a design right now: paint splashes on the slip-on toe, windy glass-shard screeds on the heel. Seriously, Vans, can you track the Splasher down so we can all just throw down our guns and admit that everybody’s essentially a shill?