Art | October 09, 2011
The Urban Canvas and Its Artists
This art feature is not currently available online.
Graffiti is hardwired into society. People have a natural impulse to leave their mark on public property, to tell the world they were here and, perhaps, what they think about it. Historically, graffiti serves many purposes. Victors of war have used it as territorial markers and gangs to stake out their turf. Politicians use it to spread their ideology while subversives use it to talk back to authorities without fear of reproach. Advertisers promote their products and criminals their unlawful services with graffiti. Lovers immortalize their devotion. The dislocated and alienated claim a sense of place. And artists gain a public audience. At its most basic level, graffiti is an affirmation of our own being; it is an announcement that “I was here.”
If you are a student, faculty member, or staff member at an institution whose library subscribes to Project Muse, you can read this piece and the full archives of the Missouri Review for free. Check this list to see if your library is a Project Muse subscriber.
Want to read more?Subscribe Today
SEE THE ISSUE
Aug 18 2021
The Charm Offensive: Magritte’s Influence on Contemporary Art
The Charm Offensive: Magritte’s Influence on Contemporary Art Kristine Somerville “All I know of hope, I place in love.” —René Magritte During the World War II, René Magritte aimed
Jun 02 2021
Clash: Punk’s Influence on Contemporary Art
Clash: Punk’s Influence on Contemporary Art Kristine Somerville Punk rock isn’t something you grow out of. Punk rock is an attitude, and the essence of that attitude is “give us
Dec 11 2020
Mash-up: The Enduring Fusion of High Art and Mass Culture
Mash-up: The Enduring Fusion of High Art and Mass Culture In 1912 at his Boulevard Raspail studio in Montparnasse, Picasso hung a changing installation of collages on a beige wall