Graffiti: Art or Vandalism

Better Essays
Topics: Graffiti, Street art
Most people can argue that there is a fine distinction between what is recognized as art and vandalism. The individual is often faced with uncertainty when the topic of graffiti arises. The public often portray graffiti as a destructive act towards his or her surroundings however; graffiti can also be considered a form of self-expression. Many questions can be made pertaining to the graffiti movement, but the main question is graffiti a crime or an art? The answers lie in the complex phrase of “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”.
Graffiti portrays contemporary sub-cultured art through its versatility and bold attractiveness on the communal grounds. In the 1970s, graffiti was blatantly acknowledged as territorial graffiti where graffitists would “tag” their anonym upon various areas to obtain great recognition from other graffitists. The graffiti era began with the simple use of characterized letterings which sooner evolved to creatively embellishing large murals. Its daring and unique presentation captured the attention of the competition so as the audience expanded, so did graffiti. It has progressed from a competitive activity for street credibility to an expressive form of street art. The mastery of graffiti has become a part of subculture with its raw and defiant nature presented within the streets and the media that its legitimacy as a form of art is starting to finally be recognized by the public.
First off, what is street art? Street art is considered as any art that is publicized in the “streets” oppose to territorial graffiti meant to display a message. The following states, “It represents the desire of humans to leave traces of their existence in the public sphere.”(Chung 25) .It was the works of early artists such as Jenny Holzer and Richard Hambleton in the mid-1970s, and later Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring in the 1980s, who have conspired with the street art movement. However, “today, the line that distinguishes street art from

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    Graffiti: Art or Vandalism?

    • 2312 Words
    • 10 Pages

    What do people think of when they see graffiti? Is it art, vandalism, or could it be both. Graffiti is a relatively new and developing art form that presents a lot of controversy due to its involvement of illegality. A lot of people see graffiti and instantly label it as vandalism and not an art form; however, by legal definition that’s not always the case. According to Oxford Dictionaries, art is defined as “The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination…producing works to…

    • 2312 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Graffiti Is Vandalism and not an Art Name Professor Institution Course Date Graffiti is Vandalism and Not an Art Graffiti is a quite new and growing form of expression that brings various controversies due to its connection of illegality. The question therefore is what comes into your mind when you first see graffiti? I must first bring your attention to what exactly graffiti, art and vandalism are before taking sides. Oxford dictionary defines graffiti as ' 'markings, slogans, written…

    • 871 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Better Essays

    Graffiti: Art or Vandalism

    • 1915 Words
    • 8 Pages

    Graffiti: Art or Vandalism? Sam Cowey Graffiti has been around for more than half a decade and practiced worldwide. However there is debate between whether it is a form of art or vandalism. Graffiti artists’ debate that many do not understand the reason most graffiti artist take the risk of incarceration, fines, injuries, and in some cases death to paint a wall. A graffiti artist can have the simple desire to become recognized, or to create a piece that speaks to their audience as a form of…

    • 1915 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    i Art or Vandalism is the question in question here on one side many people feel graffiti is art and also a form of self expression and on another side some feel it is nothing but glorified vandalism. Both sides have a very good argument but before we are able to take any side .We must first know what exactly are graffiti, art and vandalism? According to Webster's dictionary (p828) graffiti is ''defined as markings, as initial, slogans, or drawings, written, spray-painted, or sketched on a sidewalk…

    • 468 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Graffiti: Art or Vandalism? Graffiti is a true art with different meanings that involves many styles and risks that can damage artists physically and socially. Graffiti is an art, not a simple tagging on a trash can or an alley wall but an actual mural that represents meanings in every detail, style, and even every color. How many times have you seen a graffiti mural and asked yourself: what was the inspiration of the making of the mural? Three arguments in favor of legalizing graffiti are that…

    • 664 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Graffiti Vandalism

    • 2272 Words
    • 10 Pages

    GRAFFITI VANDALISM IN BARANGAY BUGO: A STUDY A research proposal Presented to Mr. Bonifacio R. Labadan Mindanao University of Science and Technology Cagayan de Oro City In Partial Fulfillment of The Requirements Of Research 10 Submitted by: Sheen…

    • 2272 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Graffiti Is Vandalism

    • 385 Words
    • 2 Pages

    What is graffiti? Graffiti can be a lot of things. Some people call it art. Some people call it vandalism. Where it was done, why it was done, the type of graffiti it is can all change how bad it can be seen as. Graffiti is markings on a surface that weren’t meant to be there. Graffiti is art when it is beautiful like a painting. Graffiti is vandalism is usually profanity or a pencil drawing on a desk or marks on a wall. Graffiti can sometimes be art but I think it is vandalism. Here are some reasons…

    • 385 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    believe that Graffiti is most certainly a valid art form. The question as to whether any forms of graffiti can be considered art is a controversial area. Is it vandalism when it is placed on the side of a building or a car and art when it is on a canvas on someone's wall or in a gallery- what is the difference? Graffiti, in its more complex forms, can be considered art because it clearly contains artistic elements, it communicates the artist's expression to the viewer, and the traditional art community…

    • 2506 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Deviance – Graffiti & Vandalism Graffiti is one of the most visible forms of crime, defacing both public and private property. It costs the community around $200 million each year and has emerged as a key priority in crime prevention for Australian states and territories. Since the founding of the Australian Institute of Criminology in 1973, Institute staff have been engaged in research on matters of public policy that include policies on Graffiti and Graffiti prevention. Graffitists are mainly…

    • 1027 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    What is it? What is vandalism? Vandalism is the deliberate destruction of private or public property. Vandalism comes in different forms, but the most commonly known is graffiti. Graffiti is usually marked by gang members or a tagger, which is a graffiti artist who spray-paints his or her name or symbol on a public structure. Other acts of vandalism include stealing signs, such as a stop sign, tearing or writing in library books, spray painting signs, keying cars and knocking…

    • 406 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays