Graffiti: Art or Vandalism Essay examples
1453 WordsMar 25th, 20146 Pages
Most people can argue that there is a fine distinction between what is recognized as art and vandalism. The individual is often faced with uncertainty when the topic of graffiti arises. The public often portray graffiti as a destructive act towards his or her surroundings however; graffiti can also be considered a form of self-expression. Many questions can be made pertaining to the graffiti movement, but the main question is graffiti a crime or an art? The answers lie in the complex phrase of “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”.
Graffiti portrays contemporary sub-cultured art through its versatility and bold attractiveness on the communal grounds. In the 1970s, graffiti was blatantly acknowledged as territorial graffiti where…show more content…
“In contrast to government-commissioned public art, street art is illicit and subversive in nature. Therefore, most street artists, including Banksy, use pseudonyms to avoid legal prosecution for vandalism.”(Chung 27) Banksy’s street art does not focus on competing with rival artists, but focuses on engaging with a broader audience in a deeper level. He provokes his audience by deeply expressing out various social practices that helps viewers to reflect and confront certain aspects together as a community. (27) The underlying message of Banksy’s art can lead towards an active involvement of street art within the community.
“Street art is omnipresent in urban streets and is a rish source of inspiration for artistic creativity. . . It possesses the aesthetic voices of the ordinary and enables resistance for the marginalized. Banksy’s street art, in particular, can guide students to think about various social and political issues and to reflect upon the immediate, if not unjust, world in which they live, to transform that world, and to
Graffiti: Art Or Vandalism? Essay
Art: the ultimate form of self expression. But, what constitutes an art? And, who decides? These very questions plague society as it tries to decide and define the official status of graffiti--art or vandalism? Because it has found its way into art galleries and because of the community of artists who challenge and inspire each other, graffiti should be considered art and as a way to express oneself.
The origin and history of graffiti is not what one might expect. Believed to have been created by a Philadelphia high school student named Cornbread in 1967, it was a bold effort to catch the attention of a girl (De Melker). In this same time period, graffiti sprung up in New York as well. It was “one among many forms of social protest” during the 1960s, “an era marked by social unrest” (Prahlad). Graffiti artists, often known as “writers”, used graffiti as a form of protest, most clearly exemplified in the “‘bombing’ (painting) of subway trains in direct response to the bombing of Cambodia and Vietnam” (Prahlad). The graffiti movement reached its peak in the 1970s, also known as graffiti’s “golden age” (Ehrlich). “The modern graffiti movement, associated with the hip-hop culture of break dancing and rap music, started primarily among black and Latino teenagers in Philadelphia and New York in the late 1960s” (Derfner 30). The tagging phenomenon spread far and fast because these artists “usually wrote on subway cars, which had the advantage of moving their writing across the city” (Derfner 30). This dispersion increased the popularity of graffiti, and the movement spread from city to city, painting the nation.
The influx of graffiti in urban cities raised some concerns with citizens. City officials were the main adversaries. So much so that “New York established an anti-graffiti task force and an undercover graffiti police unit and spent many millions of dollars on experimental solvents” (Derfner 30). Many cities view graffiti as dirty and worthless; for example, the city of San Antonio has arranged an anti-graffiti campaign in which the city boldly states “graffiti is ugly” (“Graffiti”). This attitude towards graffiti and the obsession with ridding cities of graffiti sparked the ever-present negative outlook on the craft, spoiling its artistic value.
This negative shadow on the art form of graffiti has caused the decline of the graffiti movement. As many have predicted, “graffiti may eventually disappear” (“The Writing's on the Wall; Graffiti”). Graffiti has already begun to dwindle from what was once a flourishing art movement, to an almost disesteemed hobby. However, a soiled reputation is not the only culprit in the murder of authentic graffiti. The occupation of the current generation with technology and social media has caused many artists to focus solely on selling their work and gaining attention through social networking platforms. Another, perhaps more common, reason for the decline is the improvement of police work and punishments for...
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