Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Graffiti artist vs Vandalism

Sitting on the bus on the way back from the chaplaincy I overheard a conversation (which was not hard with the volume that they were speaking at, in fact it would have been harder to not over hear it) in which one of the lads was saying he was a graffiti artist, it did peak my interest a little, which was then lost when he started to talk of the things he'd tagged by scratching his name into things. It infuriated me a little how is tagging art? To me it is nothing more than a slightly more permanent version of pissing up a wall, marking your territory. I felt like saying to him that is not art as it doesn't convey anything except that some idiot with time on his hands & a huge sense of inadequacy has been in the area. To me a graffiti artist actually says something more profound or provide amusement. For it to be art it needs to say something other than I was here (but thought better of it). People are becoming more appreciative of graffiti art, repackaging it as street art. Many places are proud of the Banksy or similar images around the place as people actually admire the effort & craftsmanship that went into making it. In fact if you can create uproar if it is removed then you really have hit the mark of the artist. I'm not condoning vandalism, but true art is something to be appreciated, somebody writing their name or just making a rude remark is worth little, though sometimes I do feel like getting a marker pen & correcting their spelling mistakes or lack of punctuation, but that would be lowering myself to their standards. If I want to leave a mark on the planet it won't be done with a compass on a bus.

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