Graffiti is all around us…

As I reported earlier this semester, graffiti is one of the most controversial forms of modern “art.” It’s rampant in large cities such as New York. While at one point in time graffiti seemed like a strong indicator that the neighborhood was going down hill, now many don’t seem to mind it at all.

Though graffiti has historically been known as vandalism, there have been massive movements in the last 10 years to remove the stigma of this urban art form. Websites such as 12ozProphet have spawned from the graffiti movement in celebration and support of the art form.

Due to the overwhelming interest in graffiti, a company called Graffiti Tours has popped up, offering paying customers a walking tour of various neighborhoods in New York City, like as SOHO, that have been both the inspiration and the canvas for graffiti artists like as BANKSY, COST, and REV. And, if you can’t make one of their tours, they offer self-guided tour maps for just $5.

There are also websites devoted to graffiti writing instruction in various graffiti styles because graffiti is like its own language. Graffiti artists use codes when they tag and, like any language, you can decipher the meaning of the message if you pay close attention to the details.

Man’s interest in leaving a memorial of their existence during a specific time and at a specific place date back to 30,000 BC in the form of prehistoric cave paintings. Lovers carve their initials in the trunks of trees and passers-by write their names in wet cement on city streets all in an effort to memorialize a special time and place in hopes that their presence won’t ever be forgotten.

Take a look at collage-style audio slide show below. You might be surprised that there is so much graffiti among us.

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