Something unusual unfolded in Bridgehampton in The Hamptons over Columbus Day Weekend—the Wildstyle graffiti experience sprung to life, courtesy of two international street artists. Facing down a stretch of white painted wall of wooden canvas, the two artists got to work and painted a street art mural on the 8 x 16-foot surface. Starting around 11 a.m. on Saturday, October 7, 2017, the artists continued until around 10:30 p.m. to complete the painted mural that combined both of their unique styles.

Manning spray cans of colors conjuring the seventies were Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. The live painting event was part of their two-person show "Up From the Underground" at The White Room Gallery, which opened on Saturday and continues through October 22, 2017.

Both artists are veterans of the NYC graffiti scene in the seventies. Growing up in the Bronx, both artists now live on Long Island and work on canvas, in sculpture or on skin (Domenick S. Vetro is also a tattoo artist). Working together to paint an outdoors mural was both a call to their pasts and and a tribute to the present as artists and friends who have collaborated and exhibited together for three decades, nationwide and internationally.

VIC 161, as he was known back then, was part of a Wildstyle crew after being brought in at 16 years old, he said.

“It was more of a way of life, painting on the streets,” he said. “This mural is to honor that time.”

Drawing upon each artist’s distinct style to create a composition, the mural was also meant to pay tribute to the historic graffiti style brought to the public forefront by the movie Wild Style. The street art mural blends both their styles by incorporating a character, a street bomb and hard edges with the soft rounded lettering that is one of the markers of wild style, said Vetro. They also selected all spray paints popular in the seventies and colors used then that are still being made today by Krylon, Rust-Oleum and Red Devil, Vetro said.

Inside the gallery, their paintings on view reveal the current artistic differences. Domenick S. Vetro’s work demonstrates strong illustrative skills and a love of narrative while V.P. DEDAJ's paintings reveal a preference for softer lines, expressive brushstrokes and contemporary abstraction or collage.

Throughout the day and well into the evening, painting by artificial light, the artists coaxed the mural into life in full public view. The wooden canvas was installed alongside the brick walkway that winds to the gallery, set in a grassy landscaped section that is opposite a bench. With the scent of spray paint filling the air, the live painting drew people casually walking along Main Street and those who were there to visit the show.

Working in shifts, the artists took turns painting one at a time.

The mural was based on a sketch made beforehand and was positioned nearby for reference. Having worked together to paint murals before, an easy give-and-take and trust in each other was already established before Rejecting the use of a grid to transform the sketch on paper to the mural’s surface, the composition was laid down in spray painted, freehand, with the painting unfolding according to their plan and intuition, explained Dedaj.

“We understand each other and take turns,” said Dedaj.

Continue scrolling to see WILD STYLE NITES brought from blank white wall to colorful mural during the live painting event in Bridgehampton, NY on October 7, 2017, courtesy of The White Room Gallery.

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V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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Photo by Kat O'Neill.

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Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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Photo by Kat O'Neill.

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Photo by Kat O'Neill.

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V.P. DEDAJ and Domenick S. Vetro. Photo by Pat Rogers.

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Photo by Kat O'Neill.

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VIC 161 & TAG's hands while working. Photo by Marc Heskell. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161 and Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161 and Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. Photo by Marc Heskell. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161 and Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG. Photo by Marc Heskell. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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"WILD STYLE NITES" by TAG & VIC 161. Photo by Kat O'Neill. Courtesy The White Room Gallery.

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BASIC FACTS: "Up From the Underground" is on view at The White Room Gallery from October 7 to 22, 2017. The show features paintings by Domenick S. Vetro aka TAG and V.P. DEDAJ aka VIC 161. The White Room Gallery is located at 2415 Main Street, Bridgehampton, NY 11932. www.thewhiteroom.gallery.

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Copyright 2017 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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