2007_6_newsplasher.jpgAfter months of silence, it looks like Shepard Fairey's recent work on the streets of New York has brought the Splasher out of retirement. Not clear yet if this is related to last week's stinkbomb arrest. Matt Barber writes:

Was down on Wooster today at the candy factory building and snapped this photo, the wheatpaste and paint look pretty fresh to me, Shep just put the same poster up near my house last week so thought it may be new, hit me back if you know if it is new or not.

If you spot any fresh Splashings, email the pix to photos (at) gothamist (dot) com!

And in unrelated streetart news, Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. is trying to revive his anti-graffiti bill. The last version got thrown out by a federal judge after Mark Ecko challenged it on free-speech grounds. The new bill would "allow people under 21 to possess spray paint and large permanent markers if the materials are carried in a sealed container or a bag closed with a key or a combination lock." It's not clear to us how that solves the free-speech problem, but we'll leave that to the courts to decide.

UPDATE: we went by the Candy Factory to examine the crime scene-- it's clear that the Splasher just targeted the Shepard Fairey piece and left the surrounding streetart untouched. This is looking more and more like a battle-to-the-death beef between the Splasher and Shepard Fairey for control of the soul of the New York City streetart scene. The last round went to the Splasher, with 20 out of 23 Obey pieces obliterated-- what will happen this time?