On the Level With Graffiti

Graffiti is meant to be looked at. That’s actually not a simple thing.  In Prague, looking up is the thing, for most. Or down.P1550694

Make that down, to the earth. A viewer has to look up to be looked down at. Seagulls don’t have this problem.glow

Or crows.


In Reykjavik, you look up. Anyone looking at you looks up at you looking up.


In Johannisberg, above the Rhine, it’s OK to look down at your son, and if he’s dead, he can look down, too. If you’re looking at this, you’re looking at them head on. They don’t look at you.


In Weimar, you have a chance, in the world’s first Disneyland, to look up at Shakespeare, who is looking to the side. The skull looks at you, though.


If you’re in Canada, you look down, or into an unfocussed distance.


But graffiti stares at you straight on.


It doesn’t want you to think. By staring at you, it erases you.


Even its absence stares.

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