8B - The Michigan Daily - Weekend, etc. Magazine - Thursday, January 17, 2002
A Photostory by Jeremy M. Menchik
recorded in Lisbon, Portugal
Listen, the walls are speaking.
Of love, politics, memory, philosophy, existentialism and
6 Lgetting trashed.
ART = EGO (beside an art gallery).
- Can't Breathe (on a city skyscraper).
Cyberspace buzzes daily with billions of words, but the
writing is still on the walls.
Graffiti is free, illegal, accessible, offensive, witty, effectiv
In an age of identity politics and confessional TV, graffiti
about affirmation and remembering, as well as political
Some people write to feel better: I Will Love Again.
Some write to incite: Live a Little!
Some are aspirational: I Want to Eat Daisies. Some ask
questions: Who owns your mind, your life? Some have
answers: There is more than one way.
Y yAdvertising is psychological conditioning.
Periodically, the hoardings are painted over, or covered b
bill posters, but the public conversation goes on.
^. Words are powerful.
They can bite.
Why else would Multiplex put chicken wire on the hoard
e wings of some building sites, making it hard to spray
messages on them?
Why else are the walls of so many corporate head offices
made of a shiny dark-grey granite-like material that is
A s impenetrable to black Text or paint?
Is this a graffiti-deflecting substance, dreamt up by a dam
I sympathize with the owners of white walls who may sud
denly find them covered with obscenities or mad scrawl,
I respect graffiti's democratic exuberance.
The world is full of slogans and billboards.
When so many pay to cover themselves with corporate
advertising (the Nike swoosh, Tommy Hilfilger's colors,
DKNY everything), it is hard to take the moral high grou
about words scrawled on walls.
They can make us laugh or, better still, think.
.B a fiE
0 0 0
The Michigan Daily - Weekend, etc. Magazine
Spraypaint supporting Palestinian Resistance, written on a construc
PROCHASEPROIIRA Er~cuRAE I
From Left: Fight Imperialism, Logo for a Communist group, Free Mumia Abu-Jamal.
Wanted Posters for Presider