Graffiti: Is it art or vandalism - or can it be both? Do you like it?

Banksy's Brighton graffiti mural Kissing Coppers sold at auction for £345,000

Banksy's Brighton graffiti mural Kissing Coppers sold at auction for £345,000

First published in News This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , web manager

Much like tattoos, graffiti is an ‘art form’ which divides opinion.

Responses to research by YouGov show the British public has come a long way in their view of graffiti but many remain firmly against it in all forms.

Two-thirds of people now think graffiti can be considered as ‘art’, while more than a third of people still say all graffiti is vandalism.

Both the beliefs that graffiti can be art and that it is not always vandalism are held by the majorities across all age groups, though younger adults tend to be more accepting.

However, only 15 per cent of the public say they like graffiti, with 39 per cent disliking it and 42 per cent neutral.

This split is closer in London, where 23 per cent like it and 28 per cent dislike it.

Where do you stand on the graffiti art v vandalism debate? In your mind is there a distinction between the tatty scrawls and tags seen in urban areas and the more elaborate ‘professional’ works produced by the likes of Banksy – or do you see any graffiti as mindless vandalism? Are there any forms of street art you like to see and think improve an area – or do you think it’s all unsightly and should be removed? Add your comments below.

Also, what are the best examples of street art you’ve seen in south-east London or north Kent? Comment below as well or send pictures by email

Our Burning Questions feature aims to settle some of life’s perennial arguments and answer some of its little mysteries with readers’ collective knowledge.

We’d love your suggestions for arguments and questions you’d like us to cover. What are the things that make you go hmmm? Add your comments below or email us

Comments (1)

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9:29am Fri 2 May 14

PaulErith says...

Vandalism! I hate the way Banksy is idolised by some people. If graffiti is a crime, then it is illegal regardless of how good the 'artist' is. Art is subjective anyway, so some people will hate his work. They might prefer to see the word "S*!T" scrawled across a wall. There's no difference in the two pieces of work.
Vandalism! I hate the way Banksy is idolised by some people. If graffiti is a crime, then it is illegal regardless of how good the 'artist' is. Art is subjective anyway, so some people will hate his work. They might prefer to see the word "S*!T" scrawled across a wall. There's no difference in the two pieces of work. PaulErith
  • Score: 11

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