STREET ART UTOPIA » We declare the world as our canvas

10 03 2013

A friend of mine posted a photo on Flickr/Twitter yesterday of a piece of street art in Mt. Pleasant, Vancouver. It was quite twee in a Banksy kind of way, and certainly not without merit.

At the time, I commented regarding my discomfort of the genre. I applaud the skill of many of the artists, and in many cases the humour used alongside their artistic skill. What makes me uncomfortable is that often permission is not sought to use these public spaces in this manner.

More and more, cities are explicitly calling upon artists to place their works prominently (and even get paid for them). Many of the examples of street art (even though skillful and/or humorous/thought-provoking) are done without permission in public (or even private) places. One man’s art is another man’s vandalism. Whereas one can forgive a piece of “official” art that one does not “get” or does not like, it’s quite another when a piece is daubed, no matter how skillfully, on a public space or even the side of ones house or fence.

I’m not totally decided on the matter. After all, much of the hard landscaping being “arted”, though official, is often ugly and had no more public consultation of its aesthetics than the unofficial work subsequently applied to it.

Here’s a site I “stumbled upon”, as well as a couple of my favourites from it.

STREET ART UTOPIA » We declare the world as our canvas106 of the most beloved Street Art Photos – Year 2012 » STREET ART UTOPIA.

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2 responses

11 03 2013
lanceleuven

Wow, there are some really incredible ones there. Amazing.

But you’re right. It’s a strange situation. If Banksy does something then it’s a revered masterpiece that honours the local community. If an unknown artist does one, then it’s vandalism. It’s a strange dichotomy.

As a side note, the Banksy in that collection (the kid making bunting) looks like the one that was stolen and almost auctioned in the US recently, just in case you didn’t catch that story on your side of the pond.

11 03 2013
Quieter Elephant

No – hadn’t heard that story – thanks. How did they steal a wall, I wonder…

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