Stop Trying to Gentrify New York Graffiti


New York Graffiti

Being a native Brooklynite, graffiti has always been a part of my culture as a type of art.

With the current flocks of Hipsters making their way to gentrify our neighborhoods, they seem to think they bought artistic graffiti to us and beautified our communities.

NEWS FLASH: It’s always been here. Williamsburg and Bushwick aren’t the only places in Brooklyn with aesthetic graffiti covering the streets.

graffitiOn the contrary, places like Brownsville and East New York also have aesthetic, and arguably more authentic, graffiti art, and are considered two of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the United States. Graffiti art is used not just to please the eyes, but is a cultural expression. Graffiti is a way we mourn love ones that have passed, and ensure they’re memory never leaves the neighborhood that was once their stomping grounds.

Graffiti is also a means to immortalize you, to leave your mark so those who come after you will remember your name. Some of these people even become urban legends. Snoopy? Jim Jones? I’ve seen these names around Brooklyn for years now and the curiosity of who they were and what their story was has never left my mind.

Graffiti has always been a staple of not just Brooklyn Streets, but streets of many urban cities. In the last ten years, these cities have been hit heavy by the Christopher-Columbus-complex gentrifiers who seem to think they’ve discovered the Holy Grail and bought it to life. We’ve always been living, and our streets have always been a canvas for us to express ourselves with cans of spray paint.

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by ShawnG

ShawnG is a self taught artist from Brooklyn, NY. After being kicked out of college for inability to pay she started painting sneakers for extra cash, forming her Artparel and Painted Sneaker Business ShawnG Originals. Her work has been featured at many outlets including Free Candy Brooklyn, RUSH Gallery Chelsea, Urban Outfitters, TopShop SoHo, and more. Shawn contributes articles about steet style, street art, and all the besutiful things that catch her eye.