Monday, June 29, 2009

Street Art?

When I was in high school at Lane Tech, its seemed like graffiti art blew up. My freshman year everyone became a tagger, even the nerdiest or least artistically inclined kid would try out a tag name. I guess if you were good you would hook up with other taggers and start a crew or just get into one. I remember ones like J4F and X-Men.

I never hung out with legitimate taggers but I went out with a girl in high school and we did some volunteer work scraping down a wall that was to going to be used as a permission wall. Anyway, I asked one of the guys why they tag, he went on to say it was art for him and that he only tagged under the CTA and government buildings. From then on I realized that graffiti could be used for art and for protest against opressive elements in society. I also appreciate how tagging has morphed into though provoking street art including stencils, posters, stickers. I understand that there is an ethos or a shared set of beliefs these artists work under.

So, I have some questions whether it be a tagger, artist, design theorist, property owner etc. These are in no particular order.

Is there a heirerachy of value given to a piece of street art that is created?

Can one judge the intent of a piece based on it's form or medium? For example, if I'm just a dumb kid who wants to put my name on a couple of garages for the fun of it, is that legitimate?

What if I wanted to tag over a community mural?

Is gang graffti a legitimate form?

Is street art less about protest and politics and more of a selfish endevor?

Can graffiti ever be considered as a nuisance?

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