Question: How does graffiti become a part of the urban environment and contribute in a positive way to community through its points of view?
Answer/Quotes: “Dating from at least the time of ancient Pompeii (AD 67-79), graffiti has been part of the repertoire of human expression and communication, as people all over the world have left their marks on public spaces such as monument walls, the underside of bridges, and the towering cornices of high buildings…. Recently, graffiti has gained legitimacy as an art form in and of itself….” 5.
“We interviewed five adults in the neighborhood community regarding their thoughts about and experience of graffiti. We also interviewed two of São Paulo’s renowned urban interventionists (a graffiti gallery owner and a graffiti artist) concerning how they perceived the social and political role of graffiti in the community.” 5
“Findings indicate that certain…features of graffiti art are particularly helpful in providing opportunities for conscientizaçãeo [critical awareness] to take place for participants we interviewed. The interventionists expressed a deliberate desire to influence the social and political consciousness, which they also hoped would lead to social action.” 5
“Noteworthy also is the fact that most of the focal participants distinguished tagging from graffiti, referring to tagging as visually polluting, dirty, often unintelligible, and generally denigrating the cityscape.” P. 19.
Comment: Of course, I immediately thought of Paul Simon’s “The Sounds of Silence” as I skimmed this study. According to the study it’s important to distinguish between tagging and genuine graffiti. A number of illustrations help to show artistic examples of graffiti. RayS.
Title: “Conscientização Through Graffiti Literacies in the Streets of São Paulo Neighborhoods: An Ecosocial Semiotic Perspective.” A D DaSilva Iddings, et al. Reading Research Quarterly (January/February/March 2011), 5-21.