The “Villains”

The best graffiti I’ve ever seen was in Paris – not just for the quality of the art, but for where it was left. Parisian graffiti artists seemed to stay away from the beautiful buildings and tried to “bomb” areas where some “decor” was more beneficial, or where a statement could be made. I realize many do not share my views on graffiti, but I like it. I think it enhances certain urban spaces when it’s done well.

“Villains” is my kind of graffiti. No, it’s not the best I’ve seen him do, but where and how it was placed on this bridge where anyone walking, driving or training over it could be labeled a villain was kind of awesome. But maybe he was going for something more. To me, it looked like a vibrant signature on a painting, as if the artist was signing off on everything as wrong. I like that sort of thing quite a lot. It was big and bold, and there’s a little security camera right next to the pickup truck, so he did this right in front of authority in a very open space. Did he intend this as the message? Was he calling out authority? That was my interpretation, anyway, that the entire city was the canvas, and “Villains” was the label or signature. As I was photographing an eccentric man walking past shouted at me. “Get it while you can, man,” he smiled. “Chicago graffiti doesn’t last long, not in a spot like that!” Surely I wasn’t the only one who noticed the art in this.

Purchase a print of this photo


2 Comments to “The “Villains””

  1. Nice, complex graphic image that’s full of strange contrasting elements. The whole scene is appropriately flat like a comic book drawing.

    • John’ you’re the 2nd person I had to “reapprove” for posting comments, and I know you and the other person both have commented successfully in the past. That’s very strange to me. I thought it was comic-like as well! Thank you…

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