Tagging is graffiti's most common form of expression. By scribbling your tag name wherever you go, most of these taggers hope to achieve some level of notoriety. But one artist has been taking tagging to new heights for decades. Beyond just an artist whose work sells at Christies and Sotheby's, COPE2 (real name Fernando Carlo) is also a graffiti legend who got his start back in 1978.
COPE2 tags are everywhere. From brick walls, to subway cars, to video games GTA IV, and movies like Shrek The Third. He has collaborated with some of street arts heavy hitters and has developed a wide range for his iconic tag. Over the years, COPE2 has also has had to deal with controversy, some of which is directed at his ambition to be taken seriously as an artist. However, after starting to work with canvas, he made his way into the art world with a bang. He has achieved a great deal of mainstream success, remixing his tag into projects for companies like Time Magazine and Converse.
COPE2 is one of the most famous New York City graffiti writers worldwide for any number of good reasons. Here are just a few: He's been up for decades. He travels the world going to jams and festivals where he good-naturedly signs everyone's blackbook. He's in all kinds of video and print media including his own video and book. His styles are both versatile and personally distinctive whether they be wildstyle or simple quickie. He's gone to the wall for graffiti in all the ways that count, and despite the inevitable Big Apple beef, he's still at it. It's hard to see a bubble-letter throwup and not give a nod to COPE2.