Lady fi5e and I came across this sticker last weekend in SOHO stuck on top of someones “street art” piece stating “Keep your art to yourself next time.” I was already happy enough about this, but after visiting the URL at the bottom of the sticker this person has become my new hero. The site, streetartblows.com, opens up to a full screen middle finger pointed at the hub of the street art movement on Wooster and Grand in Manhattan….. nice. The text on the site is well written and expresses an important point of view that isn’t heard enough.
“Street art blows. That’s basically what it comes down to. It’s sad because as a medium it has so many possibilities, and while everyone is doing it, almost no one is doing it well. What’s more, no one is calling the shit brown. Instead, everyone is getting in magazines with half-baked ideas that have been half-baking for about half a month. Going out one weekend with some wheat paste and your digi-cam doesn’t make you a street artist. Posting it on your blog Monday morning doesn’t make you any good. We need to stop telling kids that what they do is good if it isn’t.
We have to start asking questions and stop accepting everything on the walls as good. We need to ask ourselves why it is important that this is outdoors? Would this be any good if it weren’t? Why does it matter that this is done where and how it was? How is this new and, most importantly, why should I care?”
I typically hold the view that graffiti (and street art) is not an exclusionary practice. Meaning, unlike magazines, websites, books, and art galleries, there is no curatorial process on the streets; nobody saying “you are good so you can join”, or “you don’t belong here”. That being said, I completely agree with the author in that if we celebrate crap we become a movement based on feces. It is time to start expecting more than cute illustrations and cleaver puns from a medium whose roots stem from dissent and revolution. I’m really glad that this site exists and I hope to see more “Keep Your Art To Yourself” stickers in the future….. hopefully not on any of my stuff.
read the full text here