PORTLAND NEEDS WILLAMETTE WEEK.
NOW WILLAMETTE WEEK NEEDS YOU.

The need for strong, independent local journalism
is more urgent than ever. Please support the city we
love by joining Friends of Willamette Week.

Portland Is One of the World Hubs for Slap-Tagging

We spoke to a handful of artists behind the city’s most recognizable sticker tags and asked them to describe what they do and why they do it.

At a glance, the stickers that plaster street poles, stop signs and fire hydrants on nearly every block in Portland might look like urban detritus. But "slap-tagging" has become a platform for DIY artists around the world. And we're one of its major hubs.

"Portland is quite remarkable in the level and quality of our stickers," Tiffany Conklin, co-director of the Portland Street Art Alliance, told Street Roots in 2017.

We spoke to a handful of artists behind the city's most recognizable sticker tags and asked them to describe what they do and why they do it.  

Rx Skulls

Why stickers? Putting art in a gallery is very limiting. I love catching people off guard when they are in the supermarket grabbing a can of food, or reaching for a poop bag at the park.

What's your style? My work is based off a single skull photo I took in London over 12 years ago. A brain tumor many years ago sparked this morbid curiosity and I've been exploring it ever since.

See more here.

Lame

Why stickers? I love being able to give my art to the world, however lame it may be.

What's your style? I tend to bounce around a lot. I was making a lot of stuff based on hand-painted and mid-century signs. Right now it's movies and the idea of finding the separation between the art and the artist.

Wokeface

Why stickers? Stickers are like art that can go anywhere. I like to make the mundane more interesting and inject a message of love.

What's your style? Bold, colorful, and iconic—playful yet evocative.

See more here.

Ace Troy

Why stickers? My motto has always been, "Art for the people." And it's fun to have art tucked away in random places out in the world.

How do you describe your style? My character comes from a long time obsession with Wes Anderson—Richie Tenenbaum is the character I felt the most connected to. He's sad and always looking for love in all the wrong places, but still has style.

See more here.

1. Because we're creating new neighborhoods…

2. Because we made voting even easier… 

3. Because a doomed building is now a temporary work of art… 

4. Because we're still No. 1 in semi-factual superlatives… 

5. Because you can finally get a beer for less than $10 at Moda Center… 

6. Because our news anchors don't take crap from internet trolls… 

7. Because University of Portland continues to turn out some of the best women's soccer players in the world… 

8. Because we are the champions of cyclocross…

9. … and roller derby… 

10. … and air guitar…

11. Because we're turning wastewater into beer…

12. … and beer into exercise…

13. Because a local punk legend is holding a permanent rummage sale in the basement of a record shop…

14. Because we let you stop and smell the weed…

15. Because we're a world hub for slap-tagging…

16. Because even Texans are impressed by our barbecue… 

17. … and you can get almost any style of pizza here… 

18. … and also, we've perfected the soy curl… 

19. Because we're dedicated to keeping our strippers healthy and limber…

20. Because our gynecologists are building a better speculum…

21. Because our airport keeps getting more awesome…

22. …and so does Movie Madness…

23. Because we're making Halloweens more inclusive…

24. Because the city's most daring developer is growing strawberry fields in the sky…

25. Because we're bringing the pay phone back, minus the "pay" part…

26. Because you can turn on the TV and see your neighbor compete in an eating contest against a bear…

27. Because hardcore foosball players finally have a home…

28. Because we're home to the largest astrology school in the United States… 

29. Because this is the best place in the country to be a witch… 

30. Because we believe no kitty should be left behind…

31. Because the barred owls are taking over…

32. Because the best Trail Blazer in history is playing in front of us…