Street Art to Think About: Graffiti as Advertising for Graffiti Removal Service
Sometimes art is supposed to provoke. That was the goal with this graffiti, which I sprayed with a stencil. The thought behind it? I wanted to make people smile and raise a few new questions. And it should be a bit cheeky, too. That’s why I came up with the idea to spray graffiti for our imaginary “Graffiti Removal Emergency Service”. Pretty absurd, isn’t it?
Homage to the Ghostbusters
The motif is strongly inspired by the cult film and series “Ghostbusters“. It is a cover version of the well-known Ghostbusters logo, but with one big difference: the ghost has two spray cans in his hand – and thus symbolizes the sprayers who go out at night and paint the walls of our city in color.
The web address in the image GrauistDasNeuePink.com (in English: “gray is the new pink”) also gives food for thought. Whoever visits the web page, lands on a ghost-page.
How Does the Scene React?
The first reactions came quickly. Within a few days, some of my pictures were sprayed over or painted over with chalk. My answer to that: I repainted the motif with gray color only (see picture). Why gray? Because gray is the new pink! But the picture was “crossed” (overpainted/overwritten) again. And again, and again, and…
What was the reason? I suspect some “resistance fighters” understood the graffiti literally – and overlooked the absurdity of the graffiti piece. Which graffiti removal service does advertising with graffiti?
A Current Topic: Commercialization of Graffiti
Besides the paradoxical message, the graffiti also plays with the topic of commercialization of street art and graffiti. In art galleries all over the world, the “art of the street” becomes increasingly popular – and some companies are really using graffiti as a form of advertising. The consequence? The graffiti scene splits and becomes entangled in contradictions.
Many graffiti artists are of the opinion that commercialization is an absolute no-go. They prefer to stay in the “underground”. Others have no problems to market their graffiti and even earn a living on it. One thing that is often forgotten: Even graffiti removal services or spray paint manufacturers use graffiti to bring home the bacon. In my opinion, they are in the same boat!