by Mark Diagonal

Everyday is a great day to give a gift to a graffiti writer, given they spend all their green on paint, plane tickets and paying off the police. But Christmas* is the perfect time to present your favorite vandal with a thoughtful item that can’t be used as evidence the next time they have a brush with the law. Here’s the MTN World Top 10.
*Also applies to Hannukah, Diwali, Eid or whenever you read this thinly-veiled advertorial content.


Money no object this year? After a hard year hiding in bushes, scaling fences and jumping third rails, the least you can do for the main writer in your life is hook them up with some premium drip from the hands of two of the best to do the do in their respective fields. The OFFKAT sneaker is a collaboration between Katsu and the late Virgil Abloh that is guaranteed to turn heads in any city, if you’re lucky enough to find the right size. You won’t get much change out of a grand, but if you keep the toe uncreased, they’ll be worth triple that on Stock X next year.


Although this piece by New York skateboard house Supreme isn’t the vision of a veteran writer trying to earn an honest buck, its application in the graffiti game is obvious. Anything that’s worth painting is behind locked doors, so why not look good in the gritty action flicks whilst trying to prise open that last hatch before you get five minutes in the company of the subway car of your choice?


How about a piece of actual art? Here’s a joint by the man who many say started this shit, not least the Philadelphia writer himself. This collaboration with the world’s top street art nostalgia merchants Beyond The Streets features a screen-printed backboard tagged by the dude who got famous by painting on an elephant to impress a girl. Allegedly.


Totally undecided what to buy that special writer in your life? NYC bomber, designer and meme queen Claw Money has got you covered. The contents of her mystery boxes will remain under wraps until the special day arrives, but you can be sure they’ll be stuffed with garments, merch and other drip from her web store. You can choose the size of clothes contained therein and there’s even kids’ versions to keep your offspring looking lit.

“MTA X KRINK K42 BOX SET” – $100

Craig Castleman and company make some of the most elegant art supplies in the game. The brand is practically a household name in artistic circles, but their dedication to the graffiti community is unwavering. Krink take collaborations to the next level with a box set featuring the timeless graphics of the New York City Metropolitan Transportation Authority.


You may not be familiar with the work of Apparelsy, but the Spanish brand has produced some exceptionally succulent drops featuring artists from Iberia and beyond in recent years. Items featuring 2Shy, Shiat and Nano4814 sold out long ago, but a recent collection designed by Demsky is currenly in stock, and our pick is the knitted scarf to complete your fit this winter.


The Chilean globetrotter Ale VLOK published one of the most complete guides to the international train writing scene in 2020, featuring contributions from such seminal figures as Moses, Mser, Vino and Cyrus. “Patiperro – The diary of a Sudaka” should be an essential fixture in the home library of anyone interested in this secretive subculture.


It would be amiss of us not to include an item from the MTN catalog in this list, but I’m sure you’ll agree that this is a definite cop. Our latest limited edition aerosol is a collaboration with Open Arms, an NGO dedicated to save the lives of the most vulnerable people in the Mediterranean Sea. Featuring in a photo by OA photographer Santi Palacios, all profits from sales of the can will go to keeping the rescue boats running.


Everything that you wanted to know about graffiti but were afraid to ask. The Graffiti Bible by the Danish artist and author Eske Touborg dropped in late 2021 and claims to be the definitive guide that will take you from toy to king status in a matter of months. Maybe. There are also in-depth interviews with fascinating figures in the game like Mickey TFP, Bates and MadC, which aim to inform and inspire aspiring artists.


Think that graffiti writers are limited to hands, throw-ups, the occasional burner and even a mural at a push? Think again! Dutch designers Ruyzdael have started a label called Writers On Wax, and their output has included such luminaries as Ven aka Adam X and Swedish oddball Nug. Lucky for you, their finest vinyl is still available, in the shape of the Writers on Wax Volume 1 compilation. Tracks come from writers like Os Gemeos, Yalt and Ces53 and make a worthy addition to any record collection.

Whatever you wanna buy for your writer friend, make sure you cop it from a local independent store, reputable shark reseller or take advantage of vandal sales events like Rack Friday. Happy holidays!

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