Monday, October 24, 2011

Quick Thought on Street Art & the New Society

I've been wanting to blog about some thoughts I've about this article from KCET SoCal Departures since I first read it a few weeks back. First, a quick summary of this article, "Mural Conflict Has Artists Calling for 'Respect," in which the unwritten rules of street art are discussed. Apparently, a non-profit organization made some street artists (and street art fans) angry when they covered up a wall, (with a well-intentioned wheat paste installation), that had been completed by local street artist, Revok, and a few others in December 2010.

Well, people familiar with the underground culture, know that the only proper thing that should go over a "piece" should be a "better piece." (The rules kinda go like this: 'tag' > 'throw-up' > 'piece' > 'better piece'). But, what happens, when things like poster art, and wheat pastes in general, are not covered under these unwritten rules?

And what made the situation even more particular is that the wall was a private-owned wall where the owner of the wall gave the non-profit and artist permission to put up their installation, called, "I Want Peace in Congo." It was some street artists and their fans who had a problem with it. Luckily, in the story mentioned above, public apologies were offered and nothing too dramatic resulted. (Although, the manager of the building did say, "I there is anymore drama, I will sand blast the whole thing").

So, this makes me wonder about what the laws or rules will be for street art under a different future socialist society? I do think that in this type of new society street art will, not only be allowed, but be would be much more highly visible and play a larger role in society. (I think about the large public murals of Diego Rivera and the big Chinese character posters, and poster art, of the Cultural Revolution as evidence). Of course, a lot of organization would need to go into it. Input from the community, a public art commission/board, and designated spaces will definitely be needed. What do you think?

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