Melbourne Graffiti, Stencilling & Tagging
It is the big question, is it art, graffiti or both? Melbourne appears to have become the graffiti capital of the world with few walls and fences spared.
It is further complicated because there are different styles included in the argument... political expression, stencil graffiti, tagging and plain old graffiti.
What is graffiti?
There are four broad types of graffiti. The simplest form is tagging, in which the graffer simply writes their calligraphic signature. Tags are often written repetitively on walls or windows.
Stencilling is another prominent form, in which the graffer uses a stencil to quickly spray-paint a pre-formatted design.
Sometimes graffiti is politically motivated and takes the form of a slogan to protest or raise awareness about an issue.
A final form of graffiti is often referred to as graffiti art - complex illustrations in graffiti style painted on large surfaces.
$$$ Cost of Graffiti
Councils are spending a fortune cleaning up graffiti without a solution in sight. Solomon Ilios is from the new school of thought on graffiti: councils are wasting money on graffiti removal and would spend it better on commissioning "artists"to decorate residential and business walls.
"You'll never stop graffiti as long as there are authorities saying we are going to stop graffiti,"he says. "That just ignites more people to do it."
The Age newspaper has run many articles from.. Is there a place for "legal"graffiti? to calling it moronic and a crisis that seems beyond our limp-wristed council.
Graffiti tagging is evidence of small minds writ large. Taggers are not graffiti writers, nor are they artists. They are, in fact, knuckleheads who leave their signatures on walls in a code that no one outside hip-hop culture can understand.
Of course, not all graffiti is annoying. An element of protest, frustration, wit or lateral thinking reflects intelligence. Political graffiti is usually entertaining and there are pockets of it in Melbourne: Do a cop a favour, beat yourself up. Kill your television. Spank the banks. Exist and resist. History lies! I think, therefore I'm unAustralian.
Melbourne Stencil Festival
Did you know that Melbourne has its own Stencil Festival? The Melbourne Stencil Festival was organized by stencil artist Satta and film-maker JD Mittmann in February 2004.
The Melbourne Stencil Festival moved into the hub of street art, taking place at the Rose St Artists market in Fitzroy and has bigger and better things planned for 2007.
Art Crimes: Theses on the Tag
Shannon Holopainen has written 6 Theses on the Tag that will go some way to opening a new dialogue regarding the "aesthetics"of the graffiti tag -- the bread and butter of graffiti.
We chatted with a street artist yesterday while he was completing his latest work of art in a Clifton Hill back lane. He said he had started as a tagger but had progressed as his experience grew.
He agreed tagging was a problem and his latest work would almost certainly be tagged but he also said artists often painted over taggers work.
There appears no one solution while we group the various styles together.
Australia's largest online collection of street art photos and related media. The site contains over 4,000 high quality photos of Australian and world wide graffiti on trains, walls and in the streets.
Check out the interviews with some of Australia's top writers, newspaper articles, train outlines, history, wallpapers and more! MelbourneGraffiti has been around for over 10 years and is preserved in the National Library of Australia's Pandora Archives.
❊ Web Links ❊
→ Melbourne Graffiti, Stencilling & Tagging
→ Stencil Graffiti Capital: Melbourne (Hardcover)
→ melbourne graffiti - flickr
→ Writing is on the wall. It's moronic
→ stumble upon Melbourne Taggers
→ Have your say - Is graffiti really so bad? The Age
→ Let us spray - councils to commission graffiti artists - The Age
→ Art Crimes: Theses on the Tag
→ Drawing a line on art
→ Graffiti terminology - Wikipedia
→ Gallery - Melbourne Stencilling, Grafitti and Tagging
❊ Also See... ❊
→ Melbourne Graffiti
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