For me Its not creative at all. It should be overlooked. Its meant to be street art not tennagers writing ‘sex’ on the wall or bad tagging attempts. Lots of nice areas in stoneybatter ‘where iam living’ are destroyed with shit graffiti. The creative aspects of graffiti should be encourage with these youths and projects to allow areas disignated for these. My friend was the creator of the graffti art project on dublins electricty boxes around the city. Council messed it up by using them for adds and maps tho.
Thats said I do like your other pictures. They are very well done and an interesting find.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What’s unique for me about this form of graffiti is that there is no artistic intent at all. Sometimes different people unwittingly collaborate and the various layers, colours and materials produce something quite beautiful without anybody being aware of it.
The vast majority of this material is to be found up laneways, behind groupings of shops, on lock-up garages, on waste ground etc. Unlike taggers who destroy the city in the most public of places, a lot of this vernacular graffiti is completely out of view to the passer-by. That’s what’s interesting to me. In order to find this stuff I’ve risked life and limb in many areas that most sane people wouldn’t venture. I too live in Stoneybatter and also despair at shit graffiti but almost none of the images in my ongoing ‘Physical Graffiti’ collection are visible from the streets or main thoroughfares there (or anywhere else). I have no particular problem with what you term ‘creative’ graffiti or (good?) tagging especially when it’s to be found within the auspices of a designated area, my question is why can’t there be an indigenous style of street art that’s not aping an urban north American aesthetic some thirty five years it was invented?
I have just had a look at your Stoneybutter site. What a great document. When all of these expressions and territorial markings are placed side by side they almost take on another meaning. I see Derek Slator there. He has quite a range. He’s up at the Liffey Junction lock on Royal Canal. It’s great to see someone documenting aspects of the edge lands of Dublin. I’m interested in similar activities in other cities. Like the work of Nick Papadimitriou in London.
See link below.
Dear Mister Ronan,
I’m glad you enjoyed Stoneybutter and in particular, ‘Physical Graffiti’.
Rather like the hugely inspiring Nick Papadimitriou (thanks for that) I often wonder if I’m wasting my time as the graffiti set has taken years to document. The only other comment on this set of images is someone giving out because it’s not proper graffiti – He says “For me it’s not creative at all. It should be overlooked” – In some ways, all the time I’ve spent looking for vernacular graffiti has paid off simply by generating that fabulously ironic quote “It should be overlooked”. It would make a wonderful title for a book of these images. You mentioned the mysterious Derek Slator at Liffey Junction – Did you watch my film ‘The Lifeline Project’? If not perhaps you ought to as I spent a good bit of time near the Liffey Junction filming. If you’re interested Ronan, I’ve a much larger collection of images on Flickr – Try the ‘Photo 1’ set – Lots of Dublin stuff there. http://www.flickr.com/photos/stoneybutter/
Thanks again for the heads up on Nick Papadimitriou and his ‘Deep Topography’, I wasn’t aware of him – a Flaneur with a difference!
Thanks for the links, great film of a wild unsanitised Dublin. Keep documenting those making markings outside the fold. People will always make their marks on their environment. Spare us from designated areas and projects.
I have really enjoyed your conversation here. I recently had a similar conversation about tagging and graffiti although I have far less knowledge and experience, I am a fan. I think the stoneybutter site is beautiful and the montage of photos you have documented far excels the individual content of each. Thank you for the archive and the illuminating dialogue.