Ann Arbor Stencil Art

This month’s Current has an interesting article about the stencil art that can be seen around town, and the author even talks to some of the artists. One of my favorites: the “Just Do Something” stencil in the Law Quad, among other places.

“… Stencils are strongly associated with the punk rock community. The alternative images/ideas they present are protest in nature, and their placement tends to favor large, industrial cities.

Local stencil artist Wilbur describes his take on the punk community’s concepts of public art. “One of the main things for me is that art is something that anyone can do anywhere, and that goes hand in hand with the idea of public space.” …

Nisbett points out that respect is key. “People should be respectful and not do it on people’s houses or even businesses. The best place for it is public structures — railroad property, parking structures — places not owned by individuals who will suffer. Stenciling should be done when it will benefit ugly or boring places.”

Wilbur’s ultimate declaration is inspiring: “The powers that be are determined to make the world an ugly place because they don’t have to look at it on the ground-floor level — I say take it back and make it beautiful.” … “

> From Current: Off the Wall: Surveying the Streets for Beautification and Protest
> Also, see an online gallery of Ann Arbor art here (Click on the numbers for multiple pages)
> More info on stencil art at

Author: Rob