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Rafael Schacter’s colourful new tome take us inside the studios of 40 artists from across the globe who began their work on the streets. Street to Studio celebrates the 50th anniversary of ‘modern graffiti’, which the London-based anthropologist and curator determines has its roots in New York in the late 1960s.
Those 50 years, he writes, have seen street art develop from a ‘subcultural preserve of adolescents and outsiders’ to an ‘ubiquitous “image regime” and arguably the world’s most practised art form’.
In the past decade, street art has gradually been accepted by society, yet in fact it remains in a ‘radically reduced, disorientated position’ and inhibited by reductive misrepresentations – the ‘art versus vandalism’ debate. ‘It is simultaneously admired and abhorred, revered and renounced, desired and disdained’
says Schacter. To wit, the next chapter of modern graffiti requires new parameters of sophistication. Schacter takes the lead on theorising it as a movement. The artists he has selected are ‘taking the essence of graffiti – its visual principles, its spatial structures, its technical methods, its entrenched ethics – and reinterpreting them within the studio domain’. He defines this studio based form of street art as ‘intermural art’ – with a literal translation of ‘art in-between the walls’ which occupies a ‘liminal position, between inside and out’. It’s a movement that occupies a juncture between graffiti and contemporary art.
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