Street Art

Street art

What is « Street art » ?

Art Movement

The “Street art” is art developed under a multitude of forms, in public places or on the street. The term includes the practice of graffiti, graffiti stencil, video projection, displays creation, pastel on streets and sidewalks. The term “street art” is usually used to distinguish a form of art of an act of vandalism made by an individual or a group of people that defend their territory, express through graffiti their membership to a group, or whish to convey a message that has no artistic value.

The subversive value of “street art” is very powerful and motivations of artists to display their art in the street are among the most varied. Sometimes by activism, sometimes to express dissatisfaction about a fact of society or simply to convey a strong message, the “street art” is the open forum of contemporary artists. This is a very powerful medium of communication that targets a wide audience since it is easily accessible and visible.

Some street artists see “street art” as a large blank space to make their artworks while others adopt this form of art to find strong emotions that emanate from the risks incurred in the realization of projects on private or public property (arrests, infringement, etc.).

The techniques used are varied and of different proportions. Although it has been possible to observe graffiti during the decades after wars or popular uprising for example, the movement took its true meaning towards the end of the 1970s, in Europe.

Initially, “street art” particularly included graffiti artists and was associated with “punk” culture. These artists used mainly spray paint. However, more elaborate techniques have been gradually implemented in street art. To this day, we can observe especially the use of aerosol, airbrushing, but also of stencils, stickers, mosaics composed of small tiles and video projections.

Oil pastels and paintings are also often used as techniques in the “street art”. The difference between these lies in the fact that the paining must be, for example, exhibited in a public place, without necessarily obtaining authorization in advance and carried out in the most subversive way.

The « street art » remains a label often used by artists that refuse to melt away into the masses, that wish to detonate by displaying their political visions, what hurts them, what is reluctant to them or what makes them react, without however being associated with an art form, a movement, a particular group. Street artists are in fact rebels wishing to perform without authorization, consent, taboos, and limits. “Street art” can be observed everywhere in the world, since it has no borders, gender, or established delimitations. This is what makes its great originality and popularity increasingly larger.

Certain countries and cities have however strong laws against this type of art. Thus, a “street artist” can sometimes end up with heavy fines, or even with prison sentences in some cases.

This is undoubtedly a great motivating factor for some.

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