oboulograffiti - Tal 1 Oded Tal WRT 102 The Art of Graffiti...

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Tal 1 Oded Tal WRT 102 The Art of Graffiti A young boy is standing in a dark, subway tunnel with a can of spray paint in his hand. His intentions are clear. Instead of being traditional and painting at home, he is using the world as his canvas. Vandal or not, he is still an artist. Even though he may just paint his name on the wall, it is still art to some degree. Graffiti has been classified as a form of vandalism and not as an art for several decades. Rebellion against authority and public exposure of their works are reasons why teenagers and adolescents are attracted to the art, from gawking at it to taking up the art themselves. However, the reputation given to this “street art” has never been a positive one. When graffiti does not deface public property, could it not be just as fine as any other art? Graffiti artists use all the elements of art that painting, sculpture, and other art mediums do and the different styles and techniques associated with graffiti would easily classify it as a form of art. The term graffiti is usually associated with the issue of vandalism and has been since the early 1960s. Normally we see a bunch of scribbles on public property that is supposed to be a certain artist’s “tag,” or personal trademark. It is not expected that most people accept this as art, however, the extent to which an artist will use these scribbles to create a piece of art is undeniable. With problems of adolescents defacing public property, as well as gangs communicating with each other through graffiti, the art has always been frowned upon. Many will argue that those who introduce graffiti into their lifestyle are bound to be trouble-makers, with a dim future. Most graffiti artists, specifically the young teens who need to rebel and start doing graffiti, do not go as far as displaying their graffiti in galleries or exhibits. A majority of
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Tal 2 these novice artists make their name by putting up their tag in as many places as possible, without it having any aesthetic appeal. Yet the public prefers to have their walls plain and clean as opposed to covered with colorful swirls that they view as junk. George Stowers, in his “Essay Concerning the Recognition of Some Forms of Graffiti As Art,” makes many valid arguments on how graffiti may be art. “Most of the opposition to graffiti art is due to its location and bold, unexpected, and unconventional presentation, but its presentation and often illegal location does not necessarily disqualify it as art” (Stowers). The major reason that graffiti art is not accepted as easily as other forms of art is because of its unsolicited appearance. However undesirable graffiti may be because it shows up on private property, it may also be simultaneously classified as art. The many forms of graffiti that exist, including gang-related graffiti, tags, and murals,
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This note was uploaded on 04/06/2008 for the course WRT 102 taught by Professor Frost during the Fall '08 term at SUNY Stony Brook.

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oboulograffiti - Tal 1 Oded Tal WRT 102 The Art of Graffiti...

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