Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Graffiti vs. Street Art
It seems that it is becoming increasingly difficult for graffiti and street art to coexist peacefully. Feels like a bit of a culture clash is erupting.
Sad thing to see this amazing mural by Fairey get banged up. ADEK and a few others did throw ups on it, not once but several times.
First and foremost I'm a fan of graffiti and I'm rarely excited by street art, so I'm a bit biased in the war. But Fairey is talented and put in real work on the street well before his commercial success. He has also collaborated with many writers including NYC LASE and COPE 2. I also dig ADEK, He is a classic street bomber with a sweet throw-up and memorable handstyle. He's had the Lower East Side locked for at least three years now.
I can only speculate on what ADEK's motivation is. Could be retaliation for work Fairey dissed. Could be a territorial statement. Who knows? It could also be part of the growing tension between (graffiti) writers and street artists.
Writers have been taking public space for decades and established a set of rules and terms of respect for each other's work in the race for space. A lot of street artists apparently don't know the rules or don't care to abide by them. They regularly apply wheat paste and stencil work over well-established graffiti artists.
By the same token most writers have complete disregard for street art. They will paint over it without hesitation. Many writers see street artists as art school chumps and don't expect them to toss knuckles when their work is dissed.
The war will be interesting to watch.
Animal New York has a shot of the earlier attack.