Standing by...
March 8, 2014 4:32 AM   Subscribe

Glasgow graffiti artist Rogue One casts some new light on a dark and dank local underpass.

More of his work via his Flickr page.
posted by Caskeum (14 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I'm not a fan of much modern art, but these I like so very, very much.
And, it is way better than the old Iron Maiden artwork of the underpasses of my youth.
posted by Mezentian at 4:55 AM on March 8, 2014 [2 favorites]

I really hate to refer to this as "graffiti," the same word that someone would use for the idiotic scrawls done in seconds with a marker or a can of paint. There are some truly amazing artists doing serious art on the street, and the fact that they're both unauthorized shouldn't force them both to be lumped together and regarded exactly the same way.

That being said, this is really great. Such an improvement on a drab little underpass. And no cost to the taxpayer to create!
posted by nevercalm at 5:53 AM on March 8, 2014

I like the mural, and even more so the other work in the flickr link. But I also feel like I've seen photos of a similar shadow-play mural before, and it's bugging me how I can't remember where.

And I agree with nevercalm that this is more public art than "graffiti," and it would be dreadful if this got painted over because of that ambiguity.
posted by Dip Flash at 5:56 AM on March 8, 2014

I don't understand what the burst water main + flooding had to do with the mural at all; it's just mentioned as a throw-away line. Did it cause the mural to actually be commissioned (because it needed repainted?), did it delay it, or did it apparently have zero impact on it at all?
posted by Old'n'Busted at 6:17 AM on March 8, 2014

Art Pistol is a gallery that finds businesses and local authorities looking for art and project manages finding the artist/creating the art. So, although the article is a bit vague, it appears this was a commissioned piece and connected to the flooding.
posted by saucysault at 7:50 AM on March 8, 2014

If it is unauthorized then it should be treated the same as any other "idiotic scrawl", and if it is NOT treated the same, then we are in a place where we are allowing (forcing?) the law (or some agent thereof) to determine the relative worth of artworks. I think that is a spectacularly poor idea in principle, even if the quality of this particular work is hard to doubt.

I feel like some of the power of good street art is that it is ephemeral. And for me it reminds me that everything is ephemeral. One way or the other one day even the Mona Lisa will be dust.

This piece seems involved enough that it has to be authorized.
posted by dirtdirt at 7:56 AM on March 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

His flickr feed has some really beautiful stuff in it. Wow.
posted by nevercalm at 8:23 AM on March 8, 2014

I really hate to refer to this as "graffiti,"

"Street art" is a more neutral term a lot of people use when documenting unauthorized public art. I think folks in the scene find that term a bit precious and generally don't mind the word "graffiti". But for me as a fan of the art, I prefer to have a word to separate interesting art from boring repetitious tag scrawls.

Rogue One's Flickr feed is full of images that are direct descendents of New York graffiti tagging style and he doesn't even seem to mind the word graffiti. He's not someone like Jérôme Mesnager whose street art is completely different from tagging.
posted by Nelson at 8:32 AM on March 8, 2014

Shadow puppets have always struck a chord with me—how the bumps and wiggles of the extremely complex human hand can be recontextualized into very sophisticated contours representing other creatures, how much my mind wants to accept them as representations of embodied animals.
posted by BrashTech at 8:51 AM on March 8, 2014

Love this -- thank you for the link...
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 9:00 AM on March 8, 2014

You could just say "good graffiti". That distinguishes it from the other kind.
posted by LogicalDash at 10:38 AM on March 8, 2014

Rogue One is fantastic and is one of my my favourite street artists working in Glasgow - his early work is unfortunately beginning to disappear and I'm glad I have photos to remind me how he's developed.

Peter Drew is my other favourite Glasgow-based street artist - his paste-ups tend to disappear within a week or two of appearing which makes me wonder if people have begun collecting him. Or maybe it's a zealous member of Glasgow City Council..
posted by kariebookish at 10:44 AM on March 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

Huh - I use Cowcaddens tube once a week, I'm gonna have to look for this. Anyone know exactly where it is?
posted by penguin pie at 1:55 PM on March 8, 2014

That's the dodgy underpass that connects Cowcaddens subway to Cambridge St (→ the one that connects to Sauchiehall St). It used to be best avoided after dark.
posted by scruss at 4:04 PM on March 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

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