Illustrated City Part 7
Street Art Epiphany
Okay, so it’s established that not all graffiti is street art, and that not all street art has to make a profound statement about society to be street art. Making social and political statements is; nevertheless, at the heart of most street art. So much so that it causes graffiti to be recognized as a separate form in the critical eye of visual artists who can recognize the difference.
So where do I come in? I admire graffiti but I don’t really make it. I do engage in street photography, and SP is very loosely associated with street art; that I love, as a tireless observer. It only makes sense for me to merge the latter two.
My focus is on how graffiti artists and genuine street artists express themselves through their work; even the illicit and typically inept tagger. I want to use SP and urban photography to not merely illustrate that these people usually do what they do in public places but to decode the language used and emphasize what specifically is on their minds.
I hope to inspire a higher than normal amount of curiosity or investigation into why whatever is conveyed this way actually is of such intense interest to the people who go to such lengths to express themselves.
I also hope I can shed light on how or why these exhibitors select the locations they do for their output:
- Is it strictly opportunistic; because it’s merely an available place to tag or wheatpaste?
- Is it purely a tactical choice, as it appears to be; so that the street artists can get away with doing it when it actually breaks laws?
- Is it about gaining an aesthetic advantage; do the totally or semi-hidden environments help to intensify the impact that the products of labour are meant to create when first viewed by someone who happens to venture into the space or seize the object?
Perhaps it’s any combination of the above or even something else that I’ve missed.
This photography is my exploration, as well as statements about that part of society.
This is my own street art contribution.