American artist Rammellzee (or The ramm:ell:zee) was born in 1960 and raised in Far Rockaway, Queens. He began writing graffiti on the A train during the 1970s, and developed a spiky lettering that became his signature. This thorny wildstyle was a radical expression of Rammellzee’s Gothic Futurist philosophy – an ethos rooted in the 14th century, when monks were banned from writing in an ornate script that bishops deemed unreadable and dangerous. Understanding the institutional and mystical powers of the written word, Rammellzee sought to weaponize the alphabet so that it might become liberated from standardization and control. To Rammellzee, graffiti writing’s subversion of language was about resisting domination and destabilizing a restrictive society.
In the 1980s, Rammellzee’s work broadened beyond tunnels and train yards. He made neon-splattered paintings and complex assemblages crafted from New York City’s detritus. He also appeared in Charlie Ahearn’s seminal film Wild Style and Jim Jarmusch’s Stranger Than Paradise, collaborated with K-Rob on the Jean Michel Basquiat-produced epic hip-hop single “Beat Bop,” wrote an opera, and tried to get a comic book and board game off the ground.
By the 90s, Rammellzee mostly remained within the Battle Station, his sprawling Tribeca studio of over 20 years. Inside this resin-encrusted fortress, he engineered some of his most ambitious and distinctive works: the Garbage Gods – hulking trash warriors with unique identities (among them Vain the Insane, Chaser the Eraser and Igniter the Master Alphabiter). Rammellzee died in 2010 at the age of 49. His vast body of work – and its wide-ranging influence – has recently begun to receive the critical attention and study it deserves.
Supreme has worked with the estate of Rammellzee to produce a collection for Spring 2020. The collection consists of a Hooded Sweatshirt, Sweatpant, two T-Shirts, GORE-TEX Anorak, GORE-TEX Pant, GORE-TEX Camp Cap and De Martini Messenger Bag.
Select pieces available online only March 19th.
To ensure the safety of our customers and staff, this week’s release will only be available online as our stores will be temporarily closed.
Select pieces available in Japan March 21st.