Monday, June 2, 2008

LEE: Graffiti, good or bad? the eternal struggle for artistic street justice.

Graffiti, while officially considered illegal, can be put into two different categories. Some people think of it as an expressive form of art, it art and others think of it as vandalism.
Both of these sides have differing views on graffiti. For example the section of people that believe that graffiti is a form of vandalism often only look at the downside of graffiti, which is mainly the cost of removing the graffiti and use this for a focal point of why graffiti is bad, which when you think about it, is kind of contradictory as if it was not removed, no money would be spent removing it, thus making it ok in the eyes of a lot of nay-sayers who dislike it entirely because of the large chuck of cash it takes out of our pockets to remove it.
With the huge bad rep graffiti gets on TV in the news etc, there are still a lot of people out there who think graffiti is another art form, places like Melbourne and Brisbane are ripe with street art subculture.
There are several types of graffiti, these are Stencils, paste-ups, tagging, throw-ups and pieces. It is mostly tagging and throw-ups that get graffiti such a bad name because it is most associated with gangs and violent behaviour, where as paste-ups and stencils have slowly become accepted more as an expressive art form rather that vandalism but is of course still illegal.
Graffiti artists are accused of wanting “fame and power, or graffiting just to be rebellious.
This is partly true but in reality the artist wants fame for their graffiti name, not themselves, they don’t want the attention to come back to their normal lives. Rather show off their artistic expertise to other street art enthusiasts through their alias under which they sign their works.
The ‘war” between wether graffiti is good or bad will continue for a long time yet before any outcome is reached, if one ever is. But it is more likely that graffiti will continue to be looked down upon by the general public for a long time to come.

Google image search "paste ups" and "stencils"
Mostly from my own brain.


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