About Phil

Phil LeBloas, owner and tour director, NYC Urban Art Tours Location: Greene Street, Soho NYC Photographer: Christine Shaffer

Phil LeBloas, owner and tour director, NYC Urban Art Tours

Location: Greene Street, Soho NYC

Photographer: Christine Shaffer

About Phil, owner, tour director of Phil's NYC Urban Art Tours and brief history of NYC graffiti

Philippe (Phil, Phil Artiste, Mos One XMEN) LeBloas is a New York City native, graffiti artist, painter and an officially star-rated licensed NYC tour guide (#2038952-DCA), who is also fluent in French.

In the mid 1970’s, Phil accompanied his parents to NYC after school on their commutes to work, thus “growing up on the subways” seeing early graffiti and even the first stickers. It was the beginning of the “Golden” era of NYC subway graffiti, brightly colored intricately interlocking lettered master(pieces) and whole subway car productions until the mid 1980’s. In a random “New York minute” he saw legendary artist Keith Haring, signing off on one of his iconic chalk drawn illustrations on an empty ad panel on the uptown 6 line platform of the 86th Street station. Years later Phil realized he'd unknowingly witnessed a moment of NYC pop art history.

Until 1988, Phil wrote graffiti on track side wall “spots” and subway stations. The MTA (Mass Transit Authority) had already secured the yards, repainted older subway cars and new trains, (R-62 and R-68 models) were placed into service, ending NYC subway graffiti and the beginning of the current, “Clean Train” era.

Phil is friendly, passionate and knowledgeable about NYC graffiti/street art history, as well as the current urban art scene. Being part of the creative community himself, he shares his own personal experiences with fellow artists and photographers during the tour, providing an inside look into the production of the art itself.