Monday, January 08, 2007

Wal-Mart And Maisto Promote Graffiti With Childrens Diecast Toy

In December's issue of my new favorite railroad magazine, RailPace, there was a very interesting editorial.

Apparently, Wal-Mart is the major retailer of this new die cast toy train set, which is intentionally covered in graffiti. It promotes vandalism of railroad property as an "art", and included in the package is many starter resources for the budding graffitti vandal. This toy is aimed at children.

It's quite good ethics for Maisto and Wal-Mart to promote vandalism and trespassing with a toy, also it's great to know how the graffiti vandals are getting access to sensitive areas of a train yard.

Anything to make a buck. Read the press release below.

relentless release of new introductions for 2006 continues with the announcement
of the launch of Enamelized – Graffiti Diecast Train Collection. The Collection
is slated for to be on the shelves prior to Summer 2006.
The train collection
is unique in that it features graffiti art from actual artists. Along with the
approximately 1:131 scale replica will be a trading card – one side depicting
the train art, and on the other some information, if available, about the
artist. Up to 12 different graffiti artists will be utilized in the
Maisto is working with Enamelized brand and Roger Gastman, who’s unique
understanding of the graffiti art movement gives him unprecedented access to the
artists whose work will be utilized by Maisto. “I am excited to bring my network
of graffiti artists to Maisto for such an exciting project. ” says Gastman, who
has written nearly a dozen books, produced two films, and launched two different
magazines, including Swindle, which was launched with pal Shepard Fairey of Obey
Giant fame. “Graffiti keeps becoming more and more mass and diluted. To be able
to use authentic graffiti and tell the stories of the artists in this train
collection is a step foreword in broadening the culture.”
“Deep in most
inner cities, there is an artist with a collection of spray cans and a vision of
getting up on trains that go across the country.” says Ralph Benitez, the
influential Art Director who has launched Playerz, Pro-Rodz, and G-Rides lines
of die-cast collectibles for Maisto. "This collection pays tribute to those
artists that did”
The Maisto brand name was registered in 1990 by May Cheong,
a vertically integrated manufacturer based in Hong Kong. The company has been
manufacturing die cast for over 30 years, have over 11,000 employees worldwide
and manufacturing facilities covering over 2,000,000 square feet.[/QUOTE]