Wednesday, April 25, 2012

On the arrest and release of graffiti activists


The arrest and subsequent release of two graffiti activists has marked what can be seen as a major up the ante when it comes to taking graffiti and its effect and contribution seriously. NewTV eventually came to yours truly (considering not many people studied the graffiti movement) for an opinion as to the background of the matter and its implications on the visibility of the movement. I am sorry for non-Arab speakers as the report is in Arabic, but the points I was making stress basically on:
1 - Facebook and Twitter users, alongside bloggers and graffiti artists are influential but not that influential and we should know where our sphere of influence stops.
2 - The fact that the graffiti movement gained visibility and therefore credibility is both positive (because it means it is not being taken seriously, but also it entails with it enormous amount of responsiblity).
3 - Any image from my archive of graffiti could send its author to prison because political alliances have shifted since then (therefore what was permissible is no longer so) and because everything can be dipped in the sauce that whatever person in power wishes to dip it in which means that anything can become compromising.
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