Wednesday, April 8, 2009

November 2006: San Antonio

This blog receives a lot of traffic from Texas, so it's only fitting that my favorite Texan would report on the state's graffiti scene. Nick and I met abroad (see last week's Amsterdam post) and have since kept in touch. Last week, he sent me a note about the unexpected turn of events that piqued his interest in San Antonio's transient graffiti. While the photo quality is not optimal (the images are film stills), the pictures offer a glimpse at what the Lone Star State has to offer. Nick writes:

“In November of 2006 I was developing a short documentary for a production class at Trinity University.  Since I was completely devoid of ideas, my film involved following around my friend Phil, a fellow classmate, as he made his documentary about TUVAC, Trinity's community service organization.”

“At the time, TUVAC participated in a city initiative called Graffiti Wipe-Out, which was exactly what it sounds like.  Initially, I took no issue with the project, assuming it involved painting over gang tags and other crude forms of vandalism.  This couldn't be further from reality.”

“This particular day involved whitewashing two long walls filled with extremely skilled and meticulous street art.  Each mural was the work of a different artist, and varied in subject matter and style, but never in devotion or skill.  The artists obviously came from all over the state (or country), and put a lot of thought into each work, often inserting local subject matter and topography.  One featured a detailed overhead map of downtown San Antonio, with its famous Riverwalk snaking through the center.”

“My objective quickly switched from recording Phil's process to documenting as much graffiti as I could before it was destroyed forever.  I covered as much ground as possible with my DV camcorder, but it was impossible to record everything with the limited time frame and overabundance of material.”

“As I filmed, a middle-aged man snapped photos with a disposable camera.  He lived in the area and was also disappointed that the city was painting over these masterful pieces.”

“The raw footage is all that remains.  I hope that street artists continue these types of projects in the future.  Even if the city council doesn't appreciate them, a vast majority of the citizenry does.” 

Thanks, Nick! For more photos, check out his Photobucket. Also, if you're interested in cheesy films, take a look at his blog, Your Stupid Minds, where he reviews all things corny, tasteless, and tacky. Fabulous!

No comments:

Post a Comment