Our last class discussion was on Street Art (presented by Rachael Felstead).
Here are some of the questions that came up, and my own responses:
Is Graffiti considered a form of art to you? Or do you consider it to be a crime?
It depends very much on the particular style and purpose of the piece of graffiti. When it is an ugly scribble of spray paint on a piece of property that is effectively ruined by the graffiti then I would consider it a crime (vandalism), but I think that well-done graffiti can look amazing, whether it is done legally or not. But cities that embrace graffiti as an art form and display lots of it on walls and buildings do look impressive. For example, Barcelona is a beautiful city with traditional and modern architecture alongside lots of graffiti.
Do you think that punishments such as jailing should be used on people who illustrate on private buildings? When you think about people who may not have been prisoned for more serious crimes.
It depends again on the seriousness of the individual piece of graffiti how seriously someone should be punished in my opinion, but I don't think jail is necessary usually. Just a fine.
Do you think that street art can bring communities together such as Edgar Mullers piece (the lava on the road which is falling apart)? And/or do you think it can tear communities apart in terms of separating the younger generations (I assume that the majority of street artists are fairly young, sorry if I am wrong!) from the older generations because they could be viewed as 'vandals'?
When a piece of work has clearly been created as something for people to appreciate and interact with (as the people are demonstrating in Muller's piece, above) it can be very effective for bringing communities together. This kind of art work is positive rather than negative. Graffiti that vandalises buildings obviously won't capture the imagination of its viewers, and probably does encourage friction between generations, if they consider 'young people' to be behind the work they disapprove of.
What do you think of Banksy since he has gone against his word and purpose of creating graffiti? Have your opinions changed? (If you don't remember what I said about him earlier, i basically said that he used to make street art for the meaning not for the money. Though thats not very detailed
you'd probably be better looking that information up else where!)
Banksy probably had no idea how famous his work would become when he first started out, but its popularity has put him in a position of very high demand. I think sticking fiercely to the 'musn't sell out' attitude would be foolish if he can make money from what he loves doing, providing the art work he is commissioned to do doesn't go against his personal beliefs.