Research Project

Yessica Ramirez

Digital Media Foundations

COMD 1112                                   

Alec Monopoly

    Alec Andon, 34, was born on February 24,1986. He is a contemporary and graffiti street artist that creates pop art style paintings and sculptures. He goes by the name Alec Monopoly. This name comes from his famous art in which he incorporates iconic characters, but specifically the Monopoly Mascot, from the very well-known board game Monopoly. This specific icon appears in a majority of his pieces. Monopoly is originally from New York City but currently lives in Los Angeles, California. His artwork ranges from $20,000 to $125,000 although his pieces are increasing in value.

   Alec Monopoly started off by mainly tagging in the streets of New York City, which is where he grew up. He is a college dropout who has been drawing and painting since his very early ages and began tagging since the age of twelve. According to, “Alec Monopoly’s Graffiti Celebrity Portraits And Monopoly Man Are A Hit With The Rich And Famous”, by Y-Jean Mun-Delsalle, he states, ““When I was learning to write and spell, I was learning to draw, so when people ask me how long I have been doing art, I can’t even remember because it’s been my whole life.” Monopoly comes from a family of artists. His mother is a classical style painter who does oil paintings, and his grandmother was a painter as well. Growing up in New York City, most middle school kids would tag. He states that “it was part of New York City culture”. It was a normal thing for most kids to do at that age and therefore he would mainly just do street graffiti and tags. Although he does state, “But I knew my whole life that I was going to be an artist. Ever since I was a little kid, I just wanted to be an artist.” Monopoly knew from a very young age that that was what he wanted to be, an artist. He started off as just tagging and now continues to do graffiti.

Money Team Last Supper (Alec Monopoly)

   That being said, because he continues to do graffiti his signature look is wearing a mask. He does this to hide his identity so he can still do graffiti without incriminating himself, although he has been in trouble for it a good amount of times. Monopoly moved to Los Angeles in 2006, and he claims it to be the place where he was truly inspired by street art. In Los Angeles there are many walls spread out that are great as canvases for his art. He states that the main reason he moved to Los Angeles was because he wanted to spend more time on his graffiti pieces, which he was not able to do in New York City where the NYPD was constantly on the look out for graffiti. Although he does graffiti which is usually associated with crime and vandalism, he strays towards the positive side. Monopoly avoids vandalism by creating his art on abandoned property and warehouses and steers clear from government property and businesses. Monopoly does graffiti work on walls and it is his true passion, but he also has a different perspective on it as well. In the same interview he explains, “If I could just paint on walls all day long, that would be all I do, but I’m not selfish with my work. It is important to do canvas work because one day the walls can be painted over or taken down, but the canvas will live on forever. Painting on walls is more fun for me because it’s exposed to everybody, not just art collectors or enthusiasts. But my artwork is based around my graffiti, so I’ll make a graffiti piece, then a canvas.” He wants people to connect to his art and to appeal towards it not only cater it towards street artist fans.

   Alec Monopoly is known for using the Monopoly mascot from the board game. He uses the character to represent economic and social issues that are happening in the present time. Monopoly was first inspired to use this character by the stocker broker Bernie Madoff, according to Art Net. It represents a “criticism of the billion-dollar bailouts and deregulations associated with major banks” (Art Net”). In, “Alec Monopoly’s Graffiti Celebrity Portraits And Monopoly Man Are A Hit With The Rich And Famous”, by Y-Jean Mun-Delsalle, he says, ““I was playing Monopoly and watching the news, and I saw Bernie Madoff being arrested. And it hit me, it was like a light bulb and, that night, I started a canvas of a Monopoly guy that I never finished. It’s a Monopoly guy half-painted, and I went out on the street and just started tagging the Monopoly guy. The response was so quick. It was picked up on the Internet and in magazines, so I just went crazy with it.” Most of his pieces represent the economical issues but he also has pieces in which he associates with himself and his personal life. In on of the Beverly Hills Hotel Pieces “Richie BHH Date Night” Richie (another character which is feature]d in many of his artwork pieces) is walking with his girlfriend in front of a building with money floating around them.” In Street artist Alec Monopoly is a blinged-out, socially engaged paradox”, by Liz Ohanesian, he says, “Each piece is kind of reminiscent of the life I live almost”. Although he did start the use of the Monopoly mascot as a negative connotation, he now uses it in a positive perspective.

   Overall, Alec Monopoly has grown to be a well-known graffiti artist from his use of iconic characters such as the Monopoly mascot, Richie, and even Homer Simson. His at has been collected by celebrities and he has also done work for some celebrities as well. He has painted Brody’s Rolls-Royce and Khloe Kardashian’s Birkin bag. Alec Monopoly has thought about leaving the infamous icon Monopoly behind in his artwork, but for now, he continues to use it in his pieces.