Personally, I think there’s nothing worse than a big, plain, ugly, besser block or concrete wall. I find it visually offensive and depressing to be reminded that I live in a “concrete jungle”.
A blank wall is lifeless and dull and really, it is just begging someone to beautify it. I see a big, blank canvas just brimming with potential.
I read an article recently (which for the life of me I can’t find again!) about how these large photographs were appearing on building walls around Adelaide. The photos were “mug shots” of long-forgotten, local criminals.
When the photos started to appear there seemed to be some negative outcry by the local Council indicating that this was vandalism and the perpetrator was to be hunted down and dealt with accordingly. I’ve seen them myself and LOVED them!
Local street artist, Peter Drew, is behind this self-funded art project. Peter’s own experiences gave him the notion to use historic criminal mug shots to create posters to distribute on building walls around the City. Rather than covertly skulking around under the cover of darkness he boldly put them up during broad daylight without a single eyebrow being raised!
I love that the art involves real people and real crimes (although the defnition of “crime” is somewhat debatable in some instances!!). I love that each photo clearly demonstrates the emotion of the person whether it be arrogant defiance, shame or just plain confusion about how they ended up in such a position.
I love that I can walk though my modern city but be nostalgically reminded of the past and be educated on the previous inhabitants. They existed, they were real, they had lives and now, they are no longer forgotten.
Although I’m sure many would not agree, if I were one of the building owner’s I’d be grateful he’d chosen my building to decorate in a thoughtful and interesting manner!
What do you think – public art or vandalism?
How would you feel if it were your building, workplace or premises?
How would you feel if one of the mug shots were your relative?
Click here to visit Peter Drew’s website and read the full the story behind the art, how Peter’s own experiences as a ‘criminal’ inspired the Forgotten Outlaws idea and how the Adelaide City Council has even come around to somewhat support it!