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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Who should decide if Graffiti is Art?

The age-old debate: is graffiti art?

And who is to decide this, Mayor Rob Ford and the rest of council?

Mayor Ford was in Toronto's Davenport area April 7 and he personally powerwashed some spraypaint from walls as part of the Clean Toronto Together campaign. 

 While many graffiti tags are admittedly unsightly (in my opinion), there is also some beautiful work in that area and other parts of the city. Will they also meet their fate?

Here's an idea: perhaps a committee, made up of artists, residents and municipal officials (gotta even the keel), should do a 'juried show' of Toronto's graffiti. There could be several committees – maybe one in each ward – which would catalogue the graffiti and decide whether it should stay. 

Graffiti deemed 'good enough' (i.e. looking like someone put some time and effort into it) and not on private property (against the owner's will) would gain immunity from the city's cleanup campaign. The 'saved' graffiti could also become part of an art tour of some kind. 

This could be a nice compromise for those who want the graffiti eradicated and those who appreciate it as art. 

Just an idea...

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