Throwing light on graffiti

Public Lecture

It was a field day for art enthusiasts at the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) recently. A public lecture on contemporary graffiti, muralism and public art was conducted by Lene ter Haar.

Versatile: Lene ter HaarNetherlands-based artist Lene is a contemporary Dutch-German arts curator and has been associated with Schunck Glaspaleis, Heerlen, and Museum Het Domein, Sittard.

She is also part of the advisory commission of the Mondriaan Foundation, local organisations and the Netherlands Foundation for Visual Arts, Design and Architecture. The lecture was aimed to introduce people to the history and art of graffiti, muralism and all other public art forms before the project ‘Urban Avantgrade’, where Lene will be working with local artists on a series of graffiti installations and public art performances under the banner of ‘Germany and India 2011- 2012: Infinite Opportunities’.

The talk was for everybody with Lene getting down to the basics and breaking down the concept of public art for even laymen.

 She started out with a few images of her own work and collaborations that set the stage as examples of public art. Following a few definitions and a discussion on what classifies as public art, she went into the history of Mexican public art that set the ground for contemporary graffiti in the years to come.

A short film on graffiti was played to give the audience an insight into the life of a graphic artist. Examples in history were brought up and Lene discussed graffiti in her home country Netherlands and drew parallels to such art in the City especially the graffiti in Malleswaram.

This was followed by two more films that brought in the aspect of vandalism in public art. The films vaguely presented how an anonymous artist encroaches public space to express his or her views and how that can qualify as vandalism for another individual.

Lene also spoke about known graffiti artists in the scene today and concluded her lecture with a quote on muralism and public art.

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