By Maquette Reeverts | Alberta Art Works
So what can you do to help curb tagging? Plant thorny trees or bushes, remove ways to climb, light the area well, install a “living” mural or pay an artist to create a mural.
Portland’s Graffiti Task Force endorses murals as one of the best strategies available to reduce unwanted tagging. Murals demand attention and are far more respected than a glaring blank space.
They can educate, unify, beautify and create an experience that gets spread far and wide via social media. Murals can also be protected using an anti-graffiti coating making any future graffiti clean ups easier.
Interested in a mural? Use the $1,000 you might otherwise pay in fines, and pay an artist. A local one earns brownie points.
Alberta Art Works can help put you in contact with an artist and facilitate the somewhat complex mural permitting process. Or look into the Regional Art and Culture Council’s (RACC’s) Public Art Mural Program, which can provide matching funds up to $5,000 – or $2,500 if the artist is a college art student.
Under this program, RACC will own the completed artwork and have the artists waive their Visual Artist Rights Act (VARA) benefits. Those protect the artist’s image as the artist intended, regardless of the ownership of the final mural. This ensures the artist’s image remains as the artist intended, and it cannot be altered and nothing added to the creation.
Murals on private property are also a solution for those fences, garage doors or concrete walls that are unsightly or targets for tagging. Murals contrast the negative mental health effects of concrete and asphalt.
Through the visual aesthetic, murals promote a sense of identity, belonging, attachment, welcoming and openness, and they strengthens our community identification.
CNA respects the views and beliefs of all Concordians, and their cultures and faiths. The views expressed by this writer do not necessarily reflect the views of CNA.
Michel Reeverts, aka Maquette , holds a master of arts degree in art education, serves Alberta Art Works as director and Alberta Street Gallery as a board member. She is also a practicing artist. Contact her at Maquette@ AlbertaArtWorks.org.