Cops aren’t really looking for guys attaching grids of foam board to giant TV

The august issue of ICON featured an article about the physical customization of cities by Scott Burnham. It describes how the frustration towards municipal policies against street art has led to a "fresh wave of guerrilla urban design"/interventionists to focus on "physical objects, media channels and aesthetics of the city as source material."

"The current physical city is seen merely as a starting point – its streetscapes malleable and interactive. (...) Scott Wayne Indiana: “Parking meters, sidewalks, fences, gates, awnings, alleys, manhole covers… there is a list of things that could be designed in such a way as to engage with cities [and shift] the focus on the urban environment as a vibrant place that inspires the imagination, intellect and wonders of the human experience.” (...) Yet in the face of such work, the authorities remain largely unforgiving – intervention equals vandalism, and many of the cities coming down hardest are those that lust most for “creative city” status."

For example, it's interesting to hear about Jason Eppink's motivation and methods:

“I started looking at the city in a completely new way. The urban landscape was suddenly full of potential. Objects weren’t just objects anymore; they were opportunities. I occasionally stumble upon an area so devoid of either life or humour that I have an incredible urge to contribute something. This is when I take pictures of the area, study them and develop a piece around what exactly is missing from the space. I look at it like a tailor measuring a client to make the best fitting suit, or a doctor examining a patient to prescribe the right medication.” (...) “One advantage of working outside of the traditional graffiti media is that cops aren’t really looking for guys attaching grids of foam board to giant TVs.”"

Why do I blog this? It's interesting to see how street arts evolved form graffiti/sticker to much more elaborated practices because of various factors ranging from form novelty (beyond graffiti), security issues (cops, municipal policies) and possibly the need to craft/DIY more concrete stuff.


Picture taken by myself in 2005 in Geneva, some folks here hang up paintings in the city.