Monday, July 30, 2007
Public Art = Decades in Prison
KET, an acclaimed graffiti artist, is facing decades in prison. Decades. For spray paint. Seems the semi-retired 80s graff writer's tag has been appearing on subway cars again recently. The police have no evidence that this is not the work of a copycat, but when has circumstantiality ever stopped cops? A legal defense benefit is happening here.
This brings to mind the recent NYC ordinance that allows anyone under 18 to be arrested for carrying a wide-tipped magic marker. I guess this is what we need to keep New York safe for all the sex-in-the-city/Maxim magazine little shits that are moving here. And this (in addition to its being middlebrow twaddle) is why I hate Malcolm Gladwell's The Tipping Point: he gave legitimacy to the theory that you can keep a city safe by arresting artists. I, for one, would rather see pretty colors and bubble letters all over my city than ads for liquor and jeans and slasher movies. But corporations get to force me to look at their offensive nonsense every damn day, while a painter gets ripped away from his family.
This country stinks.