On London’s Graffiti

By Boudica Gast

This summer I travelled to London. I took my camera with me with the intent of attempting some urban photography. As I explored through the city looking for unusual ways to depict a place that has been photographed countless times before, I noticed the hundreds of beautiful graffiti paintings, and was intrigued.

The graffiti creations in London served to liven up the grey, urban setting around it, and refine one’s experience of the city. Sometimes they communicated a serious message, other times they were merely expressions of exquisite and aesthetic visuals. I really enjoyed photographing these metropolitan masterpieces, and hope you find joy in viewing a few in this article.

Graffiti has always been a bit of a puzzle to me, because it is considered an illegal activity. In essence, it is nothing but vandalism. Of course, vandalism of public property, not to mention private property, is something that should be frowned upon, because it is disrespectful and obnoxious. Bad graffiti, those ugly letters and vague sketches, I would classify as vandalism. But the good graffiti, the sprayed paintings that overwhelm you with their genius grace and glory, and leave you slightly wobbly on your feet, is pure art. It is something people have spent time and effort on to enrich the environment surrounding said artwork, and to express their thoughts, whether that is casual or carrying a deeper, often political, message.


Boudica Mae Gast, Class of 2022, is a Literature major from Voorburg, the Netherlands.


Image Sources: originals

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