Thursday, August 9, 2012

Art or Graffiti?

When we took a trip to Rome a few years ago there is no doubt that it was beautiful.  It was, and still is one of my most favorite destinations to have visited.  But there was graffiti everywhere.  There was even graffiti at the Vatican, which was absolutely unacceptable to me.  Who would dare write/draw on such sacred ground...yet there it was for all to see.  Suffice it to say, from my opinions expressed in this post, that I do NOT have a soft spot for graffiti...nor do I call it 'art,' even when it could be astounding elsewhere (like a properly approved venue or spot).

My daughter, on the other hand, says it is art.  She always gets excited when we come across a painting or even some well-designed painted letters on a building.  She believes it is the artist's right to have freedom of expression.  I say not at the expense of building owners who could have/would have hired someone to paint for them if they wanted to have decorations abounding.

So last weekend we were dining in Lansing, MI and came across this design on a building behind the restaurant.  My little (not so little anymore) darling  worked herself into a tizzy hoping to go see it closer, so after the meal we indulged her.  Here she is showcasing the spray paint she thought was 'ahmaaaahzing.'  I have to admit, I was not impressed. 

"Mom, this is ahmaaaaaaahzing!"
So what do you think?  Does graffiti have its place on public buildings?  Do you consider this type of thing graffiti, or art?  No judgment abounding...we're all entitled to our opinions, I'm just wondering where the general public stands on the topic.  In answering this question, you will become a part of an informal Scientific sampling.  I jest.  But seriously, sound in on your opinion, I'd love to hear what you think!

16 comments:

  1. I must admit, although I am not given to liking graffitti, at least if it is put there on purpose, and someone has taken their time doing it, it is a lot better looking that grafitti done for the sake of vandalism.

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  2. Rosie... I completely agree with you that graffiti should not cause an expense to others... However I agree with your little darling, it can be quite beautiful... I think there should be designated areas in cities where graffiti artists can freely express themselves.. Maybe art shows an exhibits. I think they want attention except they need to go about it the right way. Grace, peace and blessings..Carla

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    1. That's my issue, Carla... I appreciate art too (even in the form of graffiti) but I also think 'freedom of expression' does not entail crossing legal boundaries and ownership rights.

      I just asked my second oldest what he thought about the issue and he sided on the graffiti IS art side...not really having an issue with it being drawn in/on public places without the permission of the owners. *sigh* Maybe it's an age thing. lol

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  3. I'm with you daughter--its art--Salvitori Dali had MANY pieces that I wouldn't classify as pretty but they are works of art--some is vandalism- ruthless destruction or spoiling of anything beautiful or venerable... but I belevie a true piece of graffiti will add to a building.

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    1. My daughter asked to read the replies and is particularly delighted with yours. She's getting a real kick out of this debate. ;)

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  4. I do like well thought out appropriated placed graffiti. Where you are allowed to put your mark. i do not agree with people who just graffiti for vandalism they are two very separate things. It can be a beautiful but it can be awful. People need to have some respect for others. i also don't like when I see proper well done graffiti vandalized or on scared ground, just irritates me

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  5. I'd rather view works of art in proper places.... like an art gallery. I mean, I'm a writer but you don't see me scribbling words in public places. :)

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  6. It certainly depends on the artwork. Some graffiti is really nice and done very classy but there needs to be a place for it.

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  7. When I would see graffiti on walls, and in the wrong places, eventhough some of it was beautiful it still doesnt belong on sides of buildings or homes, that is vandalism. But rather on a beautiful canvas!

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  8. Interesting question. I actually do think of it as art but hate when I see it in inappropriate places.

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  9. Interesting question! We noticed the same thing in Paris -- graffiti everywhere. At first, I was offended that people would deface such lovely old buildings. As our trip went on, I realized that Parisian graffiti artists are selective, drawing on garbage cans, garage doors and the backs of signs. They don't seem bent on destroying centuries' old architecture. There's even a sign posted at the Eiffel Tower politely asking that artists refrain from using it as an art medium. I grew fond of the art and remember it fondly.

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  10. Graffiti can be beautiful in the right setting. Some places commission artist to paint using old buildings that they don't want to tear down as a canvas. That is absolutely stunning imagery by the way.

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  11. The picture here... yes, that is art! It was probably commissioned. When someone paints on property that belongs to someone else, that is vandalism... graffiti where I live is associated with gang activity and by law building owners are required to paint over it immediately, which, for the business owner is unfortunate because they are the ones that have to pay for someone else breaking the law.

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  12. while i totally agree with you putting graffi on the vatican is criminal (putting graffi anywhere not allowed is not okay - i am rule follower :)) "tagging?" yuck! but i think graffi is amazing too. it's part of our culture which is ever evolving. i love driving through the city and seeing large works of graffi plastered on the side of buildings. i think it shows a sense of love of art and community that is important. i greatly admire graffi artists for being willing to share their work with the public. it can make a place vibrant and unique. i am in portland and i think in general we are a graffi friendly city. many businesses pay artists for murals - and that's the way it should be! respect for both artist and owners. i think it's fabulous especially, for example, for your sweet girl, maybe it can be a first introduction to creative expression and art appreciation that will stay with her for life. ps i think it's wonderful she is appreciating the beauty around her xo

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  13. I think tagging is a form of art (however I am with Christine, the Vatican is just plain WRONG!) and it always interests me, the symbols they choose. I think when they start putting it landmarks it borders on vandalism.

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