>When is graffiti art?

>I recently got asked in the street if I felt graffiti was art or vandalism, at the time I wasn’t sure what to say as I hadn’t had time to think about it but it got me thinking, when does graffiti go from being vandalism to being art? I’m going to take a look at the world of graffiti art and justify just how graffiti actually can be visually grabbing and artistic.

Graffiti has always had negative connatations as it is usually assosiated with down beat estates where groups of people are “tagging” street walls for no other reason that to show that they were there and to mark their “territory” however graffiti has come a long way from that and today can actually be seen as a profession. I believe that these people are actually skilled artists, it takes skill and technique to do a drawing on such a large scale with spray paints and make it accurate.

Many of their work is clever, bold and insightful and make powerful statements towards something that is usually in the current media. One of the most famous graffiti artist is banksy a famous anonymous British artist whose work mainly focused on topics such as politics, culture and ethics. Little is know of banksy but he is one of the most recongnisble graffiti artist and his work is credited all around the world, here is one of his pieces below…

Banksy

After researching through graffiti artists work I have grown a huge admiration for these artists they make a statement and are not scared to show it, often many do work on already disused buildings and are actually making the place more interesting instead of disused.

Here are some of my favourite graffiti art pieces :

I feel there is a clear difference between graffiti on the street and graffiti artists who have been paid to do there work for a particular event unlike the “tagging” that is often seen scrolled across our buildings but when it’s not paid for but still a really good representation or artistic piece is this socially acceptable or not? Leave you views in the comment box.

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>Romanesque and Gothic Architecture

>While on exchange in Dallas, Texas I will be studying history of furniture and architecture, so far I have had two classes which I have to say are so far are really difficult but interesting. So far we have looked at the furniture and architect styles of Gothic,Romanesque,Early Christian,Greek, Egyptian and Italian Renaissance, all of which I find interesting however my favourite two so far is the Gothic Era and the Romanesque Era.

I have been to see both types of architecture while I was travelling last year, one of which is in Pisa. Of course this is a well known architectural site due to the leaning tower of Pisa which foundations didn’t sit properly causing it to “lean” over. Also at this site is the baptistery and Cathedral which due to there large scale are amazing to see. These three buildings are built in the Romanesque style, this style was to be practical but also atheistically pleasing. They used stone to build there castles and churches, each stone was cut with precision and arches were used heavily throughout the buildings. Due to the weight of the stone they had to use buttress to stop the buildings collapsing, usually these were hidden in the roofs to avoid taking away from the aesthetics of the place.

Leaning tower of Pisa,Cathedral,Baptistery

Romanesque style lead onto Gothic style and although they used some practices from this era they adapted and changed them slightly. Gothic style had 3 different characteristic which set it apart from Romanesque – pointed arches, ribbed vault and flying buttresses. These changes allowed the churches to be much larger and brighter. The flying buttresses allowed for large stain glass windows which let in a lot of light. The Chartres Cathedral in France is a great example of Gothic architecture.

Chartres Catherdral

Stain glass windows in Cathedral

So far I’m really enjoying learning about the different styles of furniture and architecture, they put so much detail into every piece of the buildings its a shame this type of architecture has slowly died out due to modern techniques and the want to have everything instantly instead of waiting years to build an amazing building.

>Dallas!

>OK, so I’ve been in Denton (suburb of Dallas) for a few days now and I absolutely love it, there is so much to do and everything so far is free ūüôā even the gym which is massive, it even has it’s own stadium. I’ve decided to keep this blog just for my design studies and anything to do with design or art and write another blog for my adventures at the university of North Texas so that my family and friends can keep up to date with the goings on,

My blog address for my other blog is – http://girlonthemove2011.blogspot.com/

>Selfridges window displays

>

After arriving in London yesterday and having a few hours to waste until I met up with a friend I decided since Christmas is just around the corner to go visit Oxford street and a few other to have a look at there Christmas lights and their shop displays. One that caught my attention quickly was the Selfridges and co. window displays, they are well known for there wonderful Christmas displays and this year was no different. They seem to put so much detail into making not only their windows festive but there whole shop,
Here are a few other Christmas window displays I found :

 They make the place look so festive and after finishing all my work for uni I feel in such a Christmas spirit…

The Phoenix Commotion

Tonight I decided as I was “trapped” in my house due to the resent bad weather ( thunder-snow anyone?) i would search through the Internet and see what I happened to find and luckily I came across something really interesting, it was a video on a man called Dan Phillips, he builds homes from recycled materials…. the whole house!

I’ll give you a little background information on Dan Phillips for those who have never heard of him or his work.¬† He is a designer and builder from Huntsville, Texas and in 1998 he and his wife decided to start a construction company called The Phoenix Commotion that would build affordable houses of out reclaimed and recycled materials . Their main mission was to divert waste from ending up in landfill and to create affordable and sustainable housing for single mothers, artists and low income families – I think this is a very commendable thing to do. The Phoenix Commotion keeps labour cost low by reclaiming human potential by using a apprentice program to teach sustainable building skills for volunteers and interns. The houses are energy-efficient, cheap and satisfying to build, they believe that¬†any material used in enough multiples creates a beautiful pattern.¬†Many of the ¬†Phoenix Commotion homes are covered and decorated with salvaged materials. Homes are built with their eventual owner in mind, who contributes sweat and time to build a home to their own artistic style.
Bud House

This is the Budweiser house, its made with the style of a Budweiser bottle but leads me to wonder who the occupier was to decide to build his house like an alcoholic drink… All of the materials of this house¬†were donated or found making it extremely sustainable.

I also really like this story book house, it just looks really quaint and sweet…
Have a look at there website, it’s really interesting http://www.phoenixcommotion.com/