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The Writing on the Wall

Papyrus Turin 55001 is code for "the erotic papyrus." Then there's the 2,500-year-old erotic graffiti from Greece, with a rude claim about who did what where. If you're amid graffiti of a more recent vintage -- specifically that of the American public restroom -- you might want to consult "Here I Sit -- A Study of American Latrinalia" (.pdf) by Alan Dundes (obit, previously). Good reading!
posted by MonkeyToes on Jul 9, 2014 - 8 comments

Kilroy is HERE.

The Google Street Art Project is an online collection and exhibition about the history, locations and artists of street art. Explore all the street art exhibits by place, artist, collection, medium, and more. Part of the Google Cultural Institute.
posted by Room 641-A on Jun 20, 2014 - 1 comment

Robbing the Banksy

Was the pilfered painting worth it? Detroit's 555 Gallery saved a stencil from scrappers, but now wants to sell it.
posted by klangklangston on May 15, 2014 - 22 comments

Standing by...

Glasgow graffiti artist Rogue One casts some new light on a dark and dank local underpass. [more inside]
posted by Caskeum on Mar 8, 2014 - 14 comments

"The street finds its own use for things"

Graffiti: 40 Years of Hacking New York City. "City as Canvas is a reminder that this is, in a very literal sense, criminal artwork." [Via]
posted by homunculus on Feb 17, 2014 - 4 comments

It’s not just a food, it’s a lifestyle

The Best of L.A. Taco: L.A. Taco looks back at the best tacos, art, music and people celebrating the taco lifestyle. [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A on Jan 1, 2014 - 35 comments

I Got Myself Arrested So I Could Look Inside the Justice System

"From Brownsville to downtown Manhattan, I would estimate that I passed more than 200 police officers, some from a distance, some close enough to touch. Though I was conspicuously casing high-profile public targets while holding graffiti instruments, not one of them stopped, frisked, searched, detained, summonsed, or arrested me. I would have to go further."
posted by katemonster on Dec 17, 2013 - 147 comments

Get Busy

Sofles - Limitless, Graffiti + Timelapse (SLYT) previous
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Dec 3, 2013 - 5 comments

Now it goes the way of all street art

5pointz is gone. Here's a tour of what one day in its history looked like. Here's 50 nice photos of the building and its surroundings. Bid farewell to one of the most (only?) iconic NYC subway views, as the 7 train emerges from underground. [more inside]
posted by So You're Saying These Are Pants? on Nov 19, 2013 - 44 comments

Adventures in temporary art

Paris 13 is a massive art exhibit inside a soon to be demolished building in France's capital. [via MyModernMet] [more inside]
posted by sacrifix on Oct 19, 2013 - 8 comments

Nothing I do is a true or absolute reality: Herbert Baglione's urban art

"1000 Shadows" is a series of works by the urban/street artist Herbert Baglione, which consists of spirits escaping from urban settings. His latest creations in this series are set in the empty rooms of an old abandoned psychiatric hospital in the city of Parma in Italy, which further increases the fascinating and frightening ambiance of his creations. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Aug 9, 2013 - 3 comments

Hotel Graffiti

If you're reading this it's already too late... Hiding messages in hotels since 2006. By David Bussell. [Via]
posted by homunculus on Jul 29, 2013 - 57 comments

Hip Hop's First Photographer

Old school Hip Hop photographer, Joe Conzo, captured the emerging art and culture of Hip Hop in the South Bronx during the late 70's and early 80's. Conzo's photo archive has made its home at the Cornell Hip Hop Collection, whose mission is "to collect and make accessible the historical artifacts of Hip Hop culture and to ensure their preservation for future generations." Now Scream! is the Collection's first comprehensive exhibition. It runs from April 4, 2013 to February 4, 2014. Conzo's work is part of the exhibition as well. [more inside]
posted by TrolleyOffTheTracks on Jun 18, 2013 - 6 comments

Infinite Variations on an Autograph

INFINITE is an amazing timelapse of Australian graffiti artist Sofles painting an abandoned warehouse. [slyt | via]
posted by quin on Jun 13, 2013 - 8 comments

Cage Against The Machine

Hanksy, underground street fartist.
posted by cthuljew on Apr 22, 2013 - 16 comments

A Love Letter to 2011

Molly Crabapple's Shell Game "Illustrates Occupy and the Revolutions of 2011" [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Apr 9, 2013 - 11 comments

New York's Hidden Subway Station

Deep in the belly of New York’s subway system, a beautiful untouched station resides that has been forgotten for years with only a limited few knowing of its existence. But if you know what to do, you can see it for yourself. Bonus: The Underbelly Project, a secret underground art exhibition. [more inside]
posted by Lou Stuells on Mar 14, 2013 - 36 comments

Once upon a time ...

... a story appeared on a wall
posted by specialk420 on Feb 8, 2013 - 38 comments

It's A Pity Only Security See Our Graffiti

As happens all over the world regularly, one night a team of artists got together to paint some art on the sides of trains. This group, however, used their naked bodies... and a fire extinguisher. (SLVimeo, NSFW, via Common Folk Collective.)
posted by knile on Dec 22, 2012 - 44 comments

A Victory for the Caretaker of Dreams

The Caretaker of Dreams Wins The first time the rainbow mysteriously appeared on a tunnel visible from the Don Valley Parkway, the North York parks department painted over it. But the guerrilla mural artist — known as “the Caretaker of Dreams” — persevered, eventually winning them over. Now, 40 years later, the city has officially restored the psychedelic mural that has brought smiles to countless grim commutes — just as the artist intended.
posted by modernnomad on Nov 3, 2012 - 25 comments

da Bomb x5

Five Full Films Featuring Graffiti [more inside]
posted by mannequito on Oct 3, 2012 - 10 comments

Square Word Calligraphy: English that Looks Like Chinese

English that looks like Chinese. "At first glance, Square Word Calligraphy appears to be nothing more unusual than Chinese characters, but in fact it is a new way of rendering English words in the format of a square so they resemble Chinese characters. Chinese viewers expect to be able to read Square Word Calligraphy but cannot. Western viewers, however are surprised to find they can read it. Delight erupts when meaning is unexpectedly revealed." (Britta Erickson, The Art of Xu Bing.) [more inside]
posted by jef on Aug 27, 2012 - 66 comments

The Writing on the Wall

The Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum is a massive, 17-volume catalog of 180,000 inscriptions and graffiti found across the Roman Empire in classical times. It's available for free online now, starting with the parts published before 1940. I'm fond of volume 4, which covers Pompeii and Herculaneum. (Pompeii graffiti prev) [more inside]
posted by msalt on Aug 24, 2012 - 19 comments

"Chie, I hope your hemorrhoids rub together so much that they hurt worse than when they ever have before!"

Graffiti from Pompeii is a collection of inscriptions found in Pompeii and published in the Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum. Much of it is not unlike what you might find scrawled in a toilet stall or on a wall in present day - declarations of love, friendship, and sexual prowess; complaints about careless defecators; philosophical musings about love, life, and death; and meta discussions about the act of graffiti itself.
posted by catch as catch can on Jul 19, 2012 - 47 comments

Keeping Detroit Beautiful

Renowned L.A. based graffiti crew The Seventh Letter and affiliates have been working on the Detroit Beautification Project (Vimeo link). [more inside]
posted by broadway bill on Jun 29, 2012 - 6 comments

Spray that again....

I first came across Miss.Tic in Arles,
Since the 1980's Miss.Tic has located her art mainly in the streets of Paris. You can follow her work since 1985 through to 2011.(NSFW)
Not much is available in English but here is an Interview with subtitles, and a video Ethics of Love.
One of my favorites: - Poetry is an Extreme Sport which is part of a Flickr set.
posted by adamvasco on May 14, 2012 - 3 comments

Sorting seat

Somebody's been graffiting the Central Line. Along with the now-jailed Tox's tags, you can see some sticker fun on your commute. The artist Michael Landry has already been working, as part of the Art on the Underground project, to promote the Central Line's friendliness.
posted by mippy on Apr 20, 2012 - 77 comments

Doel: Belgian ghost town turned city-wide street art gallery

Ghost town in Belgium will lose its street art when it ceases to exist. "For 700 years, Doel stood near Antwerp along the Scheldt River in Belgium. As Antwerp expanded in the 20th century, its port needed more space, and Doel quickly became a target for demolition. Trying to force residents out, the government scheduled demolitions multiple times, but were beaten by popular protests from the 1970s through the 1990s. But despite the will of the people, Doel could not be saved and in 1999, the town was officially scheduled for complete demolition. Since that time, residents have trickled out, but artists have made their way in. As more of the town became abandoned, street artists from across Europe came and began to debut their works around Doel." [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 19, 2012 - 9 comments

Point, Counterpoint

International street artist ABOVE (Wikipedia; Flickr pool; interview from 2009) convinced diamond traders at Johannesburg's Jewel City to let him paint their exterior wall with the phrase "Diamonds Are A Woman's Best Friend" ... but he didn't mention that he would be adding "And A Man's Worst Enemy" to the adjacent wall.
posted by mrgrimm on Apr 10, 2012 - 15 comments

New York Dick

For how long have you been an observer of New York dicks, and what inspired you to put them together in a book?
posted by latkes on Mar 26, 2012 - 22 comments

Murphy Ranch: the faded dreams of a Nazi Shangri La, just outside of Hollywood

About 2 miles into the park... things start to get strange. A forbidding padlocked wrought-iron gate, surrounded by a low lying stone wall sits nestled on the edge of the trail.... Strange rusted debris starts to appear on the side of the paths. What looks like an old water filtration system, broken pieces of farm equipment, half buried sinks, strange concrete slabs with graffiti . A lovely little steam appears and makes delightful background noises, lizards and birds scatter about your feet. And then you see it. A burned-out overgrown concrete building completely covered with graffiti. Cartoon of Hitler? Check. Declaration of undying teenage love? Check.... The bunker of the building is exposed and filled with trash; a metal cage sits menacingly in the corner, and outside a series of stone steps wind up to what seems to have once been a sustenance garden. The steps then continue all the way to the top of the canyon (3,000 steps in all) and ghosts of America Nazis patrolling the wilds fill your head. Baby, we aren't at the Grove anymore... We are at the Los Angeles Nazi Compound! Well, it's actually the ruins of a small community built by Nazi sympathizers, in the hills outside of greater Los Angeles. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 19, 2012 - 50 comments

GrafRank

GrafRank: Global Graffiti Statistics is a new webapp project from Jake Dobkin of Streetsy (previously). With GrafRank, Dobkin codes street art locations from the Streetsy Flickr Pool, tagged by artist, to highlight where notable street artists are working in specific cities, their prolificacy, and the more popular areas in those cities for tagging.
posted by shakespeherian on Mar 8, 2012 - 4 comments

Saturday Morning Cartoons/Breakfast Danish

The Story of Animation is a tongue-in-cheek educational film about the process of animation, aimed primarily at potential animation clients who are more clueless than most about how these toons get made (and how long it's gonna take and how much it's gonna cost). Made by-and-for graduates of the The Animation Workshop, an animation school in Viborg, Denmark, which has posted A LOT of impressive student works on YouTube... [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop on Mar 3, 2012 - 13 comments

Czech it out!

Five guys, five hundred cans of spray paint, and sixteen days.
posted by chronkite on Dec 15, 2011 - 39 comments

"I'm gonna do it freehand, whereas he can only stencil..."

Metropolitan stencilsmith Banksy certainly doesn't lack predecessors, possible auxiliary identities, or rival "street artists." (or MeFi posts: 1, 2, 3, etc.) His biggest rival, a shoe repairman from the East End called ROBBO, has gained an extensive support network, calling itself Team Robbo (music upon loading).

"Graffiti Wars [47:00],"
part of (UK)Channel 4's "Street Summer" series, documents the rattle-can battle between Banksy and Robbo, as well as the debates among Councils and residents over what to do with it all. Robbo's art career was taking off; he was commissioned to promote, and attended the Berlin Film Festival (in disguise), displayed and sold his work at the revered Pure Evil Gallery, all the while sparring with Banksy... [more inside]
posted by obscurator on Sep 14, 2011 - 20 comments

Eternity

"That shy mysterious poet Arthur Stace
Whose work was just one single mighty word
Walked in the utmost depths of time and space
And there his word was spoken and he heard
ETERNITY, ETERNITY, it banged him like a bell
Dulcet from heaven sounding, sombre from hell."
- Douglas Stewart
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn on Sep 11, 2011 - 4 comments

El Pintor Con Las Letras

Throughout the world, El Mac's grand spraypaint portraits combine with RETNA's cryptic, hieroglyphic language to create stunning murals.
posted by klangklangston on Sep 2, 2011 - 14 comments

Montreal Street Art: The Flickr Pool

Montreal Street Art: The Flickr Pool [more inside]
posted by jason's_planet on Aug 21, 2011 - 4 comments

Graffiti Tag Letter Taxonomy (Paris)

Graffiti Tag Letter Taxonomy (Paris)
posted by OmieWise on Aug 18, 2011 - 14 comments

Toronto's own little war on an abstract noun.

Mayor Rob Ford of Toronto (previously, previouslier, and previousliest) is cracking down on graffiti in Hogtown with a Graffiti Abatement Program. However, with small business owners facing steep fines for failing to remove graffiti, independent removal services charging handsomely to remove it (with power washers which can damage building facings and which also sweep aerosol paint residue into the sewers and Lake Ontario) and taggers being regularly presented with fresh canvasses to work on, which starts the cycle once again, the system seems insupportable. [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit on May 30, 2011 - 99 comments

Draw the change you want to see in the world

Gandhi street art. Classic. Armed. With friends. Writing. Silly. Warholesque. Urban. Meditative. Minimal. Grim. Shackled. Happy. Alone. Leading. On the fence. Mischievous.
posted by anirvan on Mar 30, 2011 - 4 comments

Sydromachos had a backside “as big as a cistern.”

Titas wuz here: Ancient graffiti begins giving up its secrets. [Via]
posted by homunculus on Mar 23, 2011 - 15 comments

Don't Get Caught!

"Looptaggr drive-by stenciling technology is infinite fun. Create your own Looptaggr today!" For those days when the thought of traditional tagging wears you out, there's Looptaggr from F.A.T. Lab, the team that brought you Notorious R&D. Now out: the Charlie Sheen Browser Blocker. [more inside]
posted by therewolf on Mar 8, 2011 - 11 comments

Defenestration

In November, the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency accepted a bid from Kennerly Architecture and Planning for an affordable housing complex at Sixth Street and Howard. The plans for the new building (PDF) are striking, but fans of public art will notice that a few things are missing. [more inside]
posted by roll truck roll on Feb 12, 2011 - 17 comments

Idle Doodles by Famous Authors

Idle Doodles by Famous Authors.
posted by stbalbach on Feb 3, 2011 - 11 comments

Robo Rainbow

Robo-rainbow. SLV. That is all.
posted by Ahab on Feb 2, 2011 - 23 comments

Banksy who?

The identity of Banksy is up for auction on eBay. Bidding currently stands at $999,999.00 with 38 bids. He has been "exposed" before.
posted by deadbilly on Jan 17, 2011 - 83 comments

Kerfuffle in the LA Art Scene

Kerfuffle in the LA Art Scene- the possibility that both the mural and its whitewashing are the art - from artist Mario Muller's Truffle Hunting
posted by pt68 on Dec 14, 2010 - 14 comments

Addicted to mad graffin'

Bliss N Eso - Addicted features some amazing stop-motion graffiti and just a pinch of NSFW language. The bonus is seeing how it was done.
posted by Raunchy 60s Humour on Nov 17, 2010 - 6 comments

The next level of street art

Generally, the Arts & Design section of the New York Times talks about reviews, gallery openings, ballet performances, open-air concerts, and the latest violin virtuoso. But sometimes art isn't in museums, galleries, parks, or on the sides of buildings - it’s where you can’t go. [more inside]
posted by Old'n'Busted on Nov 2, 2010 - 18 comments

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