Saturday, August 16, 2008

#442 ... Graffiti

Which is the graffiti ... fundamentally the difference is more to do with permission or authorisation than art. If you have permission from the owner of the wall it then it is OK ... if not then it is more than likely graffiti .... neither of these scenarios is a guarantee of artistic merit.

Our local suburb Ngaio is tagged Naturally Ngaio so tends to favour a more natural colour palette. However the City Council in their wisdom paid for a Painter (no disrespect intended) to create a garish blue and cheap looking seascape on the railway overbridge ... with stenciled coloured sharks ... the whole thing is so out of context and qualifies as F-ugly.

Over the last week there has been a silent tug of war going on between a tagger and the City Council ... the words "Ross is a gay" appeared and then were "blued out" .. and yesterday there they were again. For me the fascination is about what we call environmental art. In this case neither artist makes the grade ... in my humble opinion.

Graffiti (singular: graffito; the plural is used as a mass noun) is the name for images or lettering scratched, scrawled, painted or marked in any manner on property. Graffiti is sometimes regarded as a form of art and other times regarded as unsightly damage or unwanted vandalism.

Graffiti has existed since ancient times, with examples going back to Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire. Graffiti can be anything from simple scratch marks to elaborate wall paintings. In modern times, spray paint and markers have become the most commonly used materials. In most countries, defacing property with graffiti without the property owner's consent is considered vandalism, which is punishable by law. Sometimes graffiti is employed to communicate social and political messages. To some, it is an art form worthy of display in galleries and exhibitions, to others it is merely vandalism. There are many different types and styles of graffiti and it is a rapidly evolving artform whose value is highly contested, being reviled by many authorities while also subject to protection, sometimes within the same jurisdiction.


Jane Hards Photography said...

Fascinating both words and images. I agree the art(?) or the graffiti can not be considered to have any artistic merit. On the other hand Banksy a graffiti artist I admire greatly I would be happy to hang in a gallery. My partner is an artist/Politcal cartoonist so you can imagine this is a hot topic in our house.

Louis la Vache said...

Speaking of Urban Art....