Graffiti By:Landon Featherstone

Graffiti is often looked down upon and associated with crime and filth. However, this is an unfair assumption. Graffiti can be beneficial to our society and should not be generalized as vandalism. Graffiti can be used to beautify a barren area, inspire people, and help demonstrate a political or social stand.

1. Graffiti beautifying barren areas.

This is one of the more famous pieces found in Utah. It is found on the side of a store in an ally in Park City. People who once passed the building without even a sideways glance, now look at it in awe.
This mural was done on the back of a building in Salt Lake City. The mural changed the back wall of a dirty factory into an unique work of art.

2. Graffiti being a positive force

Graffiti can have a powerful effect on the heart and mind. Throughout history, art has been used to both express the artist's feelings and to entice the viewer’s emotions. Many people can look at the Mona Lisa and feel no connection at all, while others can simple view a smudge on a white canvas and feel inspired. The way we perceive art is both powerful and personal. The effect is no different with graffiti.

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3. Graffiti can be used to make a political or social stand.

Political and social statements are often expressed through the art of graffiti. People all around the globe are encouraged to voice their opinion and exercise their freedom of speech. Here are a few examples of some deeper messages communicated through graffiti.

Did you know that the famous Obama "Hope" sign started out as street art? This was a work done by Shepard Fairey who created the piece to express his political beliefs. It soon became an iconic image inspiring people nationwide.
World renowned artist, Banksy, has chosen graffiti as his mouthpiece of choice. With this medium, he has created quite a following. Banksy travels all around the world and creates political and social messages through his art form, including one of his more famous pieces being “Rage, Flower, Thrower”. Banksy was inspired to make this piece following violent college campus and street riots. This particular art piece depicts a man wearing a bandana across his mouth, a backwards hat, and hoodie while throwing a bouquet of flowers. Banksy created this piece to demonstrate how “rage” would not resolve any conflicting problems and that the best way to resolve them is through peace and love. Unfortunately, this notable piece of artwork was painted over because it was deemed “an illegal activity.”

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Credits:

Created with images by Bruce'sArtCollection - "banksy-graffiti-street-art-pulp-fiction" • struglnshynrz1 - "bansky" • Phillie Casablanca - "SLC Pepper" • Lord Jim - "Jan08 378" • Bruce'sArtCollection - "banksy-graffiti-street-art-palestine2"

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