Visual Art Oct 28, 2022 at 3:42 pm

Street Art Is Something That Must Happen When We Have Streets and Walls around Us

Graffiti that was once near the Pioneer Square Station. Charles Mudede



Did ancient Rome and Pompeii have criminal gangs tagging structures to mark their territories?


Right, those anatomical drawings spray painted on the streeteries are “art,” scrawling your ex-girlfriends phone number on a bathroom wall (for a good time, call…) that’s “self-expression.” Geez why taxpayers so uptight?


@2: Interesting, but not marking territory. Says "The inscription is usually taken to be a mocking depiction of a Christian in the act of worship."


Most graffiti is simply a name. I always saw it as a signature in search of an actual artistic image - as if they forgot to actually create something and just forged ahead to the signature.


A city is also not a city without the stench of urine. Doesn't mean I have to like it.


Define 'graffiti'. There is unsanctioned street art but most tagging is the human version of pissing on a fire hydrant


Graffiti tags of someone’s name is just about gang members showing who’s the biggest in the city. Male chauvinism at its finest.


It would be interesting to have a spectrum of 10 graffiti examples presented to Charles and have him rank them in terms of value (whatever value means).


Anthropromise Me dear, I couldn't agree with you more about Rushmore. And it's very labor intensive and expensive to maintain. I personally think we should give it back to whatever Tribe we took the land from, and let it go back to nature. Or create a national truth and reconciliation center where we address what we did to native people.

I think Harrell is onto something about the Link stations. I was at Westlake yesterday for the first time in ages, and while it's not graffitied (that I noticed), it seemed really dark and dreary. Like they changed the lighting or something.

As for graffiti (or posters), I don't mind it on abandoned buildings so much. I think that building at 2nd Ave Extension and S Main (the one on the SW corner, where the roof collapsed thirty years ago) is pretty cool, but all the stuff on the interstate and in the tunnels is just ugly.


I just wanna see backwards vids of
graffiti removal & then Decide


Graffiti is not street art. It's vandalism. Period. It is illegal and it is tarnishing our city with illegible nonsense. The authors attempt to paint Graffiti as " Street art" is a weak attempt to justify crime and take sides with those who break the law and encourage them to continue to break the law. Graffiti damages public infrastructure and private property alike. Costing taxpayers and business owners millions in clean up costs. You want Graffiti? Invite them to come and vandalize your home, sir but don't encourage them to vandalize public property or other's private business.


‘I am amazed that you haven’t fallen down, O wall / Loaded as you are with all this scrawl.’

I find it fascinating that the residents of ancient Pompeii could rhyme so skillfully in English.

BTW, where does Charles live? I have a rattle can with his name on it.


@6: FTW!

That definitely describes Charles's stream of consciousness on this subject.


one man's trash
is another's Lifeblood
--Vincent Van Gough


Wow, took until 13 comments this time before someone said that Charles should invite them over to his place to spray paint.

@11 it's the Lakota Sioux.


All Charles is saying is that graffiti is inevitable given that humans are surrounded by streets and walls. He points out that this is true and it is to be found in history. He points out that the point is the point. I am glad that Pompeii was was brought up @1. Archaeologists and historians indeed are also glad for the existence of preserved graffiti discovered there as it has helped to form a better understanding of day to day life in that time and place. The ongoing, predictable argument about what to do about it is what is not preserved. Your arguments as to this scourge matter not to those who will one day be studying you.

As far as whether ancient Rome and Pompeii "street gangs" used graffiti to demarcate territory, they very well might have! It would be an interesting topic to explore.


I would ask Charles how he feels about an incident that occurred many years ago though within the time frame of "The Stranger" where images of famous indigenous North American natives were spayed over with the words "DAP KILO". Here was tagging at it's worst; DAP refers to a street gang known as "DOWN AROUND PIKE" and KILO is presumably the gang members' name. Graffiti or the euphemism tagging does nothing but trash a city; if that's what maxist socialism is all about forget it.


I was listening to an older Seattle resident who mentioned that years ago they were involved in tagging billboards and other forms of protest but eventually stopped once they realized that people were painting all over murals, city art, and other areas where no message was being delivered, no art was being created, and they were just ruining things and causing resentment - resentment that encompassed and overshadowed any actual value any of the original tagging was done.

That's the state we've been in for a long time. Any theoretical value is outweighed by the morons destroying for the sake of destruction without caring who or what they're harming.


Haha. You got Mudede’d!

You all are Charles’ “graffiti.”


We should be so lucky as to have street graffiti in Latin (as with Pompeii) or in Spanish. At least Americans would learn a few words in another language.


There is good graffiti and some not so good. However, people will find a way to express themselves no matter what authority tries to stamp down.

Do not like urine and feces? Eliminate homelessness that is caused mainly by greed. Introduce Social Housing which will soon be on a ballot. Decent emergency facilities and services must be expanded. Poor people are Human
Beings so treat them like they are. Listen to their stories.

Harrell is a control freak who practices sweeps that do nothing to improve the city but move destitute people around and throw away their belongings.
This only makes things worse and does nothing to address the grinding poverty that caused the problem. Speak up and do not take no for an answer that is if you give a damn. We need to be more than a city for the rich.

Thank you all for reading this.


Bertha, clearly you know nothing about marxism and socialism. Do some research if you are interested. Otherwise remain ignorant.


@21 I thought the same as you did about that incident until I learned that the man who spraypainted that used deliberately washable paint and was himself Native American.

More broadly, some grafitti is art, but some is not, I'll admit. It's better, because it's righteous rage. It's an act of political rebellion against the property lines that have destroyed our communities and neighborhoods. Or it's just someone getting their feelings out without hurting anyone. There are much, much, worse things they might otherwise do before we could stop them and I think we'd better leave this outlet alone.

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