UK-based stencil artist Mobstr noticed something odd about the way a wall in his neighborhood got buffed, so he decided to do a little psychological experiment, with hilarious results. I went ahead and grafarc-ized it into an animated gif.
Check out this video by human geographer Cameron McAuliffe from Sydney, Australia: Sites of Respect: Legal Graffiti Walls and the Moral Geographies of Young People. He spent 28 weeks photographing a set of seven legal walls in the Parramatta neighborhood of Sydney, tracking their changes on a weekly basis, until a newly elected conservative council ended the legal wall program and tore all the walls down.
I haven’t yet read Christian Acker’s new book “Handselecta: Flip the Script”, but from what I’ve seen, it looks like a thorough, scholarly, and invaluable piece of work. He’s compiled hundreds of interviews, tags, and alphabet samples from writers across the US, in a grand taxonomy and analysis of regional handstyles, the roots of all graffiti culture. I can’t wait to read it, and I’ll be first in line when he comes to San Francisco to speak.
If you’re as into this stuff as I am, you might want to show your support.
Senseless Drawing Bot:
Berlin-based artist Sweza has started an interesting project: on walls that have been buffed, he pastes up a QR code that links back to a photo of whatever was there before. Sort of a virtual geocached spin on the Graffiti Archaeology meme, one layer at a time: GRAFFYARD.
(via Art Crimes)
This video, by Arnaud Jourdain, documents five years of the history of a graffiti wall in Paris dedicated to Serge Gainsbourg. What’s brilliant is the way he does it: instead of just playing back the photos in series, he isolates each individual tag, puts it on its own layer, and explodes the whole glorious mess out into space with 3D animation. It’s a beautiful, fresh take on the Graffiti Archaeology meme. The wall itself, with love notes and other hommages interspersed among the tags and wheatpastes, reminds me of the John Lennon wall in Prague.
Updates have been kinda slow on the site lately, mostly due to this new project I’ve been working on (see above). This is not a personal blog, but I had to post this shot here because of the sweet T-shirt Nate1 sent us from New Skool. Go check out his other wares, there are some excellent designs (I especially love the Krylon and headphones shirts!) Thanks Nate!
What do you call a pocket full of chisel-tip markers? Calligraphic Packing! It’s also the name of a computer graphics research project from the University of Waterloo. My friend Craig Kaplan, a professor there, is a pioneer of “computational calligraphy”, a brand new research area that’s about to grow in some very interesting directions. Craig’s been interested in graffiti for a long time, for a lot of the same reasons I am. We each have our own ways of studying it, and his way is to take it apart, learn what makes it work, and write software that embodies that understanding. This project, led by Craig’s student Jie Xu, is the first step in what I hope will be a long and fruitful quest, as Craig puts it, “to probe the nature of letterforms and legibility”.
There’s always been a strange connection between the graf world and the world of superheroes. Maybe it’s the secret identities, or the way things tend to happen at night. Jonathan Lethem brought out a piece of it in his novel The Fortress of Solitude, which is really worth reading. Now there’s a group of animators approaching the same idea from another angle: a hiphop/anime hero who can absorb energy from graffiti walls, and use the style to fight his enemies. Check out the teaser video: Blokhedz. Arrow fight! Gotta love it.
(via Cartoon Brew)