Nicholas Ganz has researched the topic of Street Art known in some circles as Graffiti and in this comprehensive book has gathered images not only from the United States but from five continents, images identified by artist with a brief biography accompanied by panorama shots of the larger scale works coupled with details. The result is a complex, lavishly illustrated survey of the art form of the streets and the people who create it.
Graffiti is still a controversial subject. The one form of graffiti which simply marks gang areas or swiftly splays across windows and freeway overhangs and covers billboards is not the issue here. Yes, there is a destructive force to some forms of defacement known as tagging. But that is not the subject of this book. Not unlike the fine little Indie film 'The Graffiti Artist' by James Bolton, this book follows the art forms developed by various artists which are more like the murals of yesteryear that are now hallowed as masterpieces. Think Orozco, WPA, etc.
Ganz writes well and his commentary, while mostly descriptive, does delve into some of the philosophical elements of Graffiti Art. Perhaps to those who view any art from a spray can as defacement and the work of hoodlums, this book will open the mind to a popular art of the street. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: perhaps that eye will benefit from this well-designed, well-written, and well-documented survey of international graffiti art. Grady Harp, November 05
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About the reviewer
Grady Harp (gradyharp)
Grady Harp is a champion of Representational Art in the roles of curator, lecturer, panelist, writer of art essays, poetry, critical reviews of literature, art and music, and as a gallerist. He has presented … more
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