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It's a secret - single - 21/02
Member since 27/01/2005

 Flag US United States (general), United States

Manifesto: Public Space versus Private Space: In the eyes of the law, there really is no such thing as "public spaces". Even the street itself is owned by the city and I believe that we are technically renting it with our taxes. I`m using "public space" to refer to spaces that are, of course, privately owned; but are "felt" to be owed by the group. Spaces like parks, hydro poles, electrical boxes, and parts of the streets, ECT. Like most everything else, our public visual landscape is dictated by the bottom line. By finances. Sure advertising is legal and graffiti is not, but that doesn`t mean that one is good and one isn`t. Advertisers are bigger bullies than graffitos; they just have the money to buy legitimization. There simply is no profit in permitting graffiti, so it will never be legal. I find it very sad that our shared spaces (yes, privately owned but we SHARE them damn it.) are bought and sold by the powerful but can`t be used by the very people who live and work there. Artists are carefully contained and kept in their studios. We are left with what I think is a problem, The city is privately owned, but sold to those rich enough to afford it. As citizens we are left without a sense of ownership of public space, without a sense of ownership of the city, because there really is no such thing as public space, and the people who live in a city don`t shape the visual landscape nearly as much as big business does. The end result? We live in malls. Who owns a city? The people who live in it? Not really, they are just "renters", passing though. They don`t claim ownership. They just want it to be nice and neat and ordered. They want their boat un-rocked. Most anyway. One group of people who do claim ownership are street artists, who say: "Hey, this is our city; this is my city too. I want it to be interesting. I want it to be exciting. I want it to be unique. I want to be a piece of it." Freedom and right to own Private Property: As much as I dislike the how our system has had an effect of handing over the reins of our visual landscape to those rich enough to afford it, If a property owner want to sell advertising space to companies, that`s his prerogative, and it may be an important source of income for him/her. And I can`t deny that if someone were to put up an image on their wall, unasked for, it would be a violation of their freedom to have their wall look just as they want it to. That`s the crux of the issue, isn`t it? It`s not whether graffiti is ugly, or advertising is ugly, it about freedom and right to private property. I like the fact that I can own stuff and if someone else unrightfully takes it, the government will send big guys in uniform to get it back. Or if someone unrightfully smashes it, the government will send the big guys to get the buggers who did it and punish them. I like that I don`t have to defend my house with a crossbow. I pay a man money so I can live in his house, and we both pay the government money to take over the whole crossbow thing. I don`t think art will ever be able to afford to compete with business for the public visual landscape the way the system is now, and I don`t think the government will be leveling the playing field anytime soon either… So until then I will do what I can; responsibly, and within the law. I think it is the responsibility of street artists to act with discretion if they want to be treated with respect, instead of as criminals Graffiti Versus Street Art: I think most people confuse street art with a genre Street Art does not just equal Tagging Just like Comics does not just equal Superheroes Street art is not a medium -Spray paint Street art is not a style -Typical and popular 80`s New York style. Street art is not even a thing, it is a practice. An Activity. If I can offer my best definition: Street art is art made for and put up in "public" places. It doesn`t have to be illegal. It doesn`t have to be free. You might have noticed: Under this definition advertisements qualify as street art, but it IS only made to sell something, not for any sort of loftier goals. And it`s too bad that it is mostly all of what is out there. Anticipated outcome: I hope to have an impact (however small and short term it may be) on the city at large, and to grow a reasonable amount while I do it. I have found that most people have an attitude to street art that goes something like this: "I believe graffiti is analogous to the way dogs mark their territory. It`s unfortunate that so many dogs have to piss all over public property just to assert themselves." I want to help change this attitude.

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