Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2006 Does Detroit have a grafitti problem? Previous Next
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Gianni
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Username: Gianni

Post Number: 208
Registered: 05-2004
Posted From: 69.3.204.91
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 10:17 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In this interview on NPR yesterday, Mark Ecko, the"designer, artist and entrepeneur" discusses his new video game in which the players earn points by tagging more and more difficult targets, including police cars. Ecko is the guy responsible for those rhino clothes you see everywhere. During the course of the interview Ecko says "Detroit has a grafitti problem."

Do we?

He goes on to say, not very convincingly, that he is not glorifying or supporting tagging private property, and speaks very articulately (or so it seems) about the history and aesthetics of grafitti.

You have to listen to the interview, which is 7 1/2 minutes long, perhaps beyond the usual attention span of this forum, but it's an interesting take on the subject. Or maybe just the guy marketing himself, which he seems to be very good at.

http://www.npr.org/templates/s tory/story.php?storyId=5206181
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Jt1
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Username: Jt1

Post Number: 6737
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 198.208.251.24
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 11:03 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yes we do. The city needs to start making the fines ridiculous for taggers - huge fines, thousands of hours of community service, etc.

I'm still waiting for the day when I can catch one of the little fucks in the act.
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Super_d
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Username: Super_d

Post Number: 695
Registered: 08-2005
Posted From: 69.246.119.28
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 12:03 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

'Jt1'_ the graffito that you see today is not true representation of the true movement of underground graffiti crews from back in the early 80's and the like. The 'stuff' that you see today are nothing more than amateur works from a few 'hipsterized' white kids from the burbs' that come into the city and paint a few blocked style tags with no clear statement, definition, or meaning, and people are quick to label it graffiti.

Myself, an ex-crew member that consisted of 10 to 12 artist was committed to a mission of political awareness as well as beautifying the community thru artistic works. Most of the 'crew' went on to become healthy members in our communities.

Long live the 'TRUE' Art of Grafitti

super d(motordetroit)
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Treez4brkfst
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Username: Treez4brkfst

Post Number: 106
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 68.21.61.1
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 12:10 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

UP for grafitti! Down for vandalism! Grafitti is a wonderful artform in and of itself but tagging buildings that are privately owned is definitely a criminal offense. As I wander throughout the city I am amazed at the quality of the artwork presented in grafitti. Some are political statements and some are simply self aggrandizing but its "beauty" is sometimes undeniable. I wish there were better platforms for the presentation of the artform but it is what it is.

P.S. Grafitti is one of the 4 elements of Hip Hop!
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Gmich99
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Username: Gmich99

Post Number: 51
Registered: 11-2005
Posted From: 82.239.108.13
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 12:29 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Detroit has no grafitti problem compared to the great cities and lesser cities of Europe. Presently I am in Paris, which has more grafitti than Detroit and it pales in comparison to the grafitti I witnessed in Germany. Where mainly large urban cities have grafitti and our suburban and rural communities are sparred, Europe tags everything from small villages to the steps in the metro station.
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Jimaz
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Username: Jimaz

Post Number: 134
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 68.2.191.57
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 1:15 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In Arizona, it's illegal to deface petroglyphs (http://www.petroglyphs.us/), an ancient form of grafitti left by the Anasazi, yet modern grafitti is also illegal and immediately removed whenever encountered.

Anthropologists in the distant future may well conclude that early 21st century southwest humans had lost their former literacy when they stopped leaving written records.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

(Message edited by Jimaz on February 15, 2006)
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Dove7
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Username: Dove7

Post Number: 1974
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 24.5.195.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 1:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thank you Gmich. There is plenty of grafitti here in San Francisco and Oakland.
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Aiw
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Username: Aiw

Post Number: 5299
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 209.216.150.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 2:34 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Gmich, I found two things amazing in Paris.

1. That the inside of every tunnel in the metro was tagged.

and

2. The RER ride from Charles de Gaulle to the Gare du Nord. Nearly every inch of every surface lining the tracks were ceated in Grafitti.

Grafitti here is nothing compared to over there.
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Ray1936
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Username: Ray1936

Post Number: 275
Registered: 01-2005
Posted From: 207.200.116.139
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 3:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Me 'n southwest grafitti, jmaz. Was it a form of communication or just early gang-tagging???
(Grapevine Canyon, 30 miles s/of Las Vegas)
tagging
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Dove7
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Username: Dove7

Post Number: 1980
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 24.5.195.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 3:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

ray come on now, u know u r the man behind that. :o)
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Jimaz
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Username: Jimaz

Post Number: 135
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 68.2.191.57
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 3:16 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

Ray1936:
Was it a form of communication or just early gang-tagging???



I think no one knows its purpose for sure. It's certainly some form of communication but with whom?

The Nazca lines in Peru are interesting too. It would be hard to find modern grafitti that large.

Nice pic!


(Message edited by Jimaz on February 15, 2006)
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Lt_tom
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Username: Lt_tom

Post Number: 65
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 144.147.1.66
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 3:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Tagging was pretty popular in southern california about 2 years ago. Ive noticed a lot of it was cleaned up and stayed off. The razor wire put up around freeway signs may have played a role in that. Gmich is right about europe though. The amount of graffiti I saw on a trip to Berlin was unbelievable. Everything is tagged . EVERYTHING. And not just in the city, there was graffiti all over the countryside on a train ride I took to Warnemunde by Rostock.
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Jimaz
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Username: Jimaz

Post Number: 136
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 68.2.191.57
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 3:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There are a lot of Google Earth Community placemarks for the Nazca figures located northwest of Nazca proper. I can't make out the figures because of the low resolution but there are some image overlays there that might help.
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Ray1936
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Username: Ray1936

Post Number: 276
Registered: 01-2005
Posted From: 207.200.116.139
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 4:24 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

LOL, Dove7! Actually, no....the penalties for damaging prehistoric sites are too nasty for me to mess with.

Jimaz, weren't there some Nazca-type figures down around Blythe, CA?
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Jimaz
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Username: Jimaz

Post Number: 139
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 68.2.191.57
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 4:29 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Ray1936, yes, I had forgotten about those.

http://www.blythegpaa.org/blyt heintaglios.htm
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Mauser765
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Username: Mauser765

Post Number: 717
Registered: 01-2004
Posted From: 4.229.24.104
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 4:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

"Detroit has a grafitti problem."

Do we?




yes.
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Treez4brkfst
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Username: Treez4brkfst

Post Number: 107
Registered: 06-2004
Posted From: 68.21.61.1
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 5:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Naw we dont. After that Trtle episode there aren't recognizable taggers are there????
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Ray1936
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Username: Ray1936

Post Number: 277
Registered: 01-2005
Posted From: 207.200.116.139
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 5:15 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Good website, jimaz...TY. I don't think they're quite as dramatic as the South American ones, but interesting, nonetheless.

Now, there's a challenge for the Detroit grafitti 'artists'....take four vacant city blocks and.....well, never mind.
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Swingline
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Username: Swingline

Post Number: 403
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 172.132.237.52
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 5:27 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've noticed a lot of grafitti in Hamtramck lately. Nothing artistic. Looks like gang tagging to my uneducated eye. I hope that they can get it under control. Hamtown is struggling with its budget and its schools. High taxes, shitty schools, gangs and grafitti don't give middle class taxpaying families much of a reason to stick around.
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Gumby
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Username: Gumby

Post Number: 882
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 141.216.1.4
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 6:24 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I would say that the D has a graphitti problem. While I do not condone it I would have to say the funniest tag i ever saw was on the back of a police car on elizabeth behind the Fox a couple of years ago. I laughed pretty hard when I saw that one.
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Jt1
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Username: Jt1

Post Number: 6750
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 198.208.159.18
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 6:27 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The difference between Europe (crazy amounts of tagging where I have been) is that Europeans are still fairly city centric.

In cities that are established grafitti won't chase people away. In cities that are struggling to bring people in and fighting to stay afloat grafitti is just another symptom of issues in the city and does not help recovery.

Grafitti in NY has much less of an effect (true and perceptual) than grafititi in Detroit. Add in that new projects in Detroit are on tight margins cleaning grafitti on a regular basis may be the straw that breaks the camels back. In NY rent is so high and property values are so high it is just an inconvenience.

Add in the perception difference of grafitti in a bustling city (part of the city) and a fairly empty city (crime ridden and dangerous) and the perception hurts the struggling city much more.

That's how I see it.
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Jasoncw
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Username: Jasoncw

Post Number: 117
Registered: 07-2005
Posted From: 148.61.248.170
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 12:15 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I think certain grafitti is good, because it's interesting to look at and gives an area a more culturaly rich (lack of a better term) feeling, but in general, I don't like grafitti.

But some of those people could really be making some money doing graphic design. they're talented.
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Michigansheik
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Username: Michigansheik

Post Number: 87
Registered: 09-2005
Posted From: 72.255.9.162
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 12:32 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

grafitti is neat,
tagging is crap

we have an abandoned building problem.
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Matt_the_deuce
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Username: Matt_the_deuce

Post Number: 495
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 69.14.248.252
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 1:45 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There's an affluent lake district outside Berlin that I have been to a few times (I can't recall the name) On the drive out from the city I noticed a lot of grafitti in the area. It reminded me of the nicer areas of our lake district - Pine lake/Orchard lake, even a little bit of Cranbrook thrown in.

Anyway, I mentioned that it seemed odd that there was so much grafitti in this very well to do district. Our German companion didn't think it odd and and I found myself explaining that in the states you normally don't see grafitti in these kind of areas.

My only explanation of this phenomanon would be some social/cultural dynamic that I believe is tied to a kind of post war/anti establishment vibe that still exists. The pendulum has swung so far over to the other side that I feel that in certain ways they are overcompensating for their past. They still carry a lot of baggage from the war. This could have no connection to the grafitti thing, but I think they are being tolerant of it to a point that exceeds common sence. It seemed very odd to me, like I was the only one in the room who noticed the white elephant.

I acknowledge that tying this "overcompensating" theory to grafitti is a stretch to say the least, but I believe it exists and have had other experiences over there that bare this out.
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Mplsryan
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Username: Mplsryan

Post Number: 130
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 24.26.164.215
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 4:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

yes,...but
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Matt_the_deuce
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Username: Matt_the_deuce

Post Number: 497
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 69.14.248.252
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 1:08 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Back to Detroit - I think grafitti done in appropriate areas is no problem at all, and in fact I think we should alow and encourage it. Maybe grafitti parks or other areas where it won't negatively affect a propert owner or business.

It's all a matter of context and intent. Someone who tags a freshly painted bridge on one of the expressways for 100's of thousands to see everyday should be punished. A lot of tax payer $ went into cleaning up this bridge. Someone who tags a concrete wall in a rail cut should probably be given a pass...

Does Detroit have a grafitti problem?

Not as much as it did a few years ago.
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Gianni
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Username: Gianni

Post Number: 210
Registered: 05-2004
Posted From: 209.104.144.90
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 1:36 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The Dequindre cut is to be made into a bike/walking path from near Eastern Market to the riverfront. The work is supposed to start this year and I believe the funding is already in place. Does anyone know what the plans are for the current grafitti which has been so wonderfully preserved on this site by Lowell? Seems I heard that the plans include keeping the grafitti or even include an area where artists were encouraged to do their thing. That sounds too good to be true. Those cement walls down there seem like the perfect canvas.
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Ericdfan
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Username: Ericdfan

Post Number: 106
Registered: 08-2005
Posted From: 68.41.117.60
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 4:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

all I haev really seen as far as grafitti in Detroit is that Turtle (which someone spoiled by writing "sars" accross nearly each one...so I guess his name must be "sars"...and yes..I do actually know what sars is..)....Warrendale used to have a really bad grafitti problem...Just punk white kids going around and writing stupid stuff like "Steve was here" on ppl's garages...it was rather annoying. However; my property was never tagged, because I was well respected when I lived there...someone also wrote "love God" on a number of buildings...
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Derrick
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Username: Derrick

Post Number: 1
Registered: 02-2006
Posted From: 70.245.27.81
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 5:33 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Does anyone know if the Paintcans & Politics documentary was ever released? I have been watching their site for about 2 years now. I havent seen an update in awhile.

As a former graff head myself i found the trailers to this movie very interesting. It would be a shame if the movie was scraped.

The official site: http://www.paintcansandpolitic s.com/
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Jimaz
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Username: Jimaz

Post Number: 174
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 68.2.191.57
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2006 - 5:56 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Derrick, thanks. I'd lost that link.

Imagine the drama if some preservationist group used the strategy of painting loved, doomed architecture with really top-quality, world-class art.

It would be like that Tiggeriffic orange (http://www.thedetroiter.com/no v05/disneydemolition.html) project only in a reverse, positive way.
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Abraham
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Username: Abraham

Post Number: 9
Registered: 06-2005
Posted From: 68.62.57.21
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2006 - 1:48 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Not that I ever noticed. Go down there and take a look.
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Royce
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Username: Royce

Post Number: 1470
Registered: 07-2004
Posted From: 70.236.187.104
Posted on Tuesday, February 21, 2006 - 4:14 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yes, Detroit has a grafetti problem, especially when you have bastards tagging U.S. Postal Service mailboxes. If caught, wouldn't they be facing federal charges for vandalizing government property? Tagging is wrong. Period.

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