Monday, May 23rd, 2005
There is shit still running from over a decade ago because there aren’t enough writers that do shit to make going over other people an issue. I think there are a lot of reasons why DC currently has so little graffiti when compared to New York and other cities. One reason is the nature of the city. Most of the people here work for the government in one way or another, and are usually here for only a couple of years before moving away. Another reason is gentrification has, in the past couple of years, picked up a lot of speed here. Whereas NYC (mainly Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn) is well past the saturation point of yuppies and their plastic “communities.” A bi-product of mass-produced consumer culture and cookie-cutter style “communities” is alienation. DC hasn’t reached its boiling point yet.
In terms of risk, it’s like everywhere else in that it depends on the area you’re in. The farther away you get from the downtown area and the surrounding suburbs, the less cops there are. But there are a lot more crazy vigilante types. I’ve been chased several times, yelled at, harrassed, tackled and searched, and not once was it by a cop. At the same time, though, there are a lot of people that are “down,” as long as it’s not gang-related. The myth that most graffiti is gang-related could be why people are so hostile. When I’m painting in yuppie neighborhoods it’s different, people just don’t like me writing on their stuff. It’s more of a pride/arrogance thing with yuppies than it is with native DC folks in poorer neighborhoods. Rich people don’t like authentic face-to-face human interaction, so they call the police a lot more.
I was pretty excited at this point. I felt like I had just unraveled a mystery or something and I’m pretty silly so I get off on these kinds of things. And it just so happened that I had my digital camera with me, so ya, I took it out and got a couple pictures of Borf as he walked ahead of me towards the circle.DCist’s Who Is Borf post continues to attract comments on the subject …
I noticed that at each pole or newspaper box that Borf would stop, approach the pole or box, look around, and (probably after he saw my ass tailing him) turn and continue walking. His behavior was so fascinating. It was as if he was naturally drawn to every potential graffiti-worthy object that he passed. Maybe it’s like an addiction or something? …
Monday, April 18th, 2005
Thursday, April 14th, 2005
Monday, April 11th, 2005
Tuesday, March 29th, 2005
Thursday, March 17th, 2005
Monday, February 7th, 2005
Photo taken this weekend in Adams Morgan.
Photograph taken in Foggy Bottom.
Friday, January 7th, 2005
Taken at Dupont Circle.
Saturday, November 27th, 2004
Wednesday, November 24th, 2004
Wednesday, November 3rd, 2004
This Reaganesque vampire-like man was spotted on K Street in downtown Washington D.C., of all places. The stencil art was created on a page from the business section of the newspaper, and then pasted to a temporary construction barrier near a bunch of movie posters.
Tuesday, November 2nd, 2004
Stencil featuring a pirate flag photographed in Washington D.C. (See another view of this design.)
Wednesday, October 20th, 2004
Both photographs taken this evening on 17th Street NW, Washington D.C.
Sunday, October 3rd, 2004
I spotted this stencil near 14th and U St. NW.
Monday, September 27th, 2004
I took this photo last spring in Bloomington, Indiana. I think it’s supposed to show President George W. Bush. I have written about stencil art in Ann Arbor before, and I reccomend this extensive gallery of art in Ann Arbor, Detroit, and Toledo.
Monday, February 23rd, 2004
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 happyfeettravels.org