Graffiti artists need area for self expression

Graffiti in Victoria, Esquimalt, tagging, graffiti art

Re: Force graffiti artists to clean up (Letters, Sept. 14)

I agree with letter-writer Roel Hurkens that graffiti clean up and enforcement could improve. That said, he refers to “tagging,” which is not graffiti.

There are more than 540 legal graffiti walls around the world, with more than a dozen of those in Canada. This accepted art form is marketable. In October, a single work of graffiti sold for $65,000 in Hong Kong.

Commissioned or not, legal or not, graffiti art has become an admired aspect of the urban landscape. Large pieces have been used as backdrops for advertisements, videos and films, even the CBC’s Rick Mercer stages his weekly “rant” against an artistic graffiti background in downtown Toronto.

Also in Toronto, Const. Scott Mills took a novel approach to tackling the problem of local alleys that were plagued with garbage, tags and drug dealers.

He organized store owners and local youth to clean up and repaint the laneway – filling it with murals. Now you’re more likely to see tourists in there, snapping pictures of the urban art.

Hurkens and crime experts may need to consider redefining graffiti. I believe they are mixing it up with mindless defacing of property, which may be linked to other crimes, such as markings used as a gang signal to mark territory or to serve as an indicator for gang-related activity.

William Perry


Just Posted

Chinese Culture to light up 2019 Victoria Day Parade

Groups hopes Greater Victorians ‘view the culture, embrace the friendship’

Struggling Victoria adoption agency elects new board that intends to keep it open

The previous board announced that Choices would close May 31

Royal and McPherson Society pleads its case to Victoria council

‘Dark days’ at Royal, user groups’ weekend priorities make scheduling other entertainment challenging

Uplands Park champion to earn provincial award

B.C. Community Award for Margaret Lidkea coincides with Sunday’s volunteer celebration

Oak Bay Sgt. struggles through emotional testimony in double murder trial

Andrew Berry is charged with second-degree murder in deaths of daughters Chloe (6) and Aubrey (4)

VIDEO: Killer whales hunt for seals in Vancouver harbour

Bigg’s killer whales feed on marine mammals like seals, sea lions, dolphins and even other whales

Wanted by Crime Stoppers

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you think the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris should be rebuilt?

Images of one of the word’s most iconic landmarks were seared into… Continue reading

VIDEO: B.C.’s waving granny gets incredible send-off from school kids

Tinney Davidson has been waving at students on their way to school for over 11 years, but is moving in a month

Island-born Snowbirds pilot enjoying homecoming in skies over Comox

Logan Reid once stood clinging onto the fence outside the Comox Air… Continue reading

Attack on student in Courtenay ‘way more than bullying’, says mom

A Comox Valley mother said “it was way more than bullying” at… Continue reading

Vancouver man, 19, charged in human trafficking case involving teen girl

The 16-year-old girl was reported missing and later discovered in Vancouver

Blaine, Wash. inn owner, charged with smuggling people into B.C., granted bail

Robert Joseph Boule ordered to turn away anyone indicating a plan to enter Canada illegally

Most Read