Comment Conundrums on Legal Graffiti

Peoples opinions on the topic of legalizing graffiti are at the extremes of the scale, not in between. Either they believe in the expression of graffiti as art and use that to justify its placement on property that is not theirs, or they are completely against graffiti in the sense that it is still considered defacement of property regardless if it looks good or not. However, in the rare midst of these opposites, a response to a New York Times post about how Rio legalized graffiti stated, “you are entitled to your art. Forcing others to view it is inconsiderate and spoils the purpose of art which is to communicate with other people”. This person makes a point that it is the individual themselves that have a say to what is or isn’t art in their eyes. When displaying it in widely seen places such as a subway or a large warehouse wall, the painting is not going to be appealing to everyone.

A majority of the other arguments made against graffiti is the fact that it is defacing another person’s property. One person stated in association with this, “Creating ‘art’ on a surface that is not owned by you and without permission of the owner is not art; it’s just property crime.” These people argue that and if they wanted art on their wall, then the owner could just ask for some, or better yet pay someone. After all, you wouldn’t want someone tagging their “art” on your car would you?

In response to those that deny graffiti as art based of of its location, this one commenter had something witty to say, “If Leonardo da Vinci stole his canvas to paint Mona Lisa, would Mona Lisa still be considered artwork? Of course it would.” People that are pro graffiti would say that the location plays a major role in what actually makes graffiti, “graffiti”. Not based off of the fact that it is displayed on people’s private property, but because graffiti is statement art. It is displayed purposefully where people can view it, in a negative sounding yet true way of wording it, it is forced to be looked upon by the artists that created it.

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