Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Vandalism as Art

I usually don't condone defacing statues that represent the cultural heritage of France, or any kind of public property for that matter, but after seeing this bit of graffiti I was willing to make an exception. I mean, it's just plain cute!

There is a lot of graffiti in Paris, especially in the metro. Most of it is either offensive, childish, or completely nonsensical. It's an eyesore to be sure, but just as you do with the people who play musical instruments in the trains during the morning commute, you tend to tune it out after awhile. Nevertheless, I couldn't help but be struck by the writing on the little statue of Auguste Rodin that is located at the entrance of a park in Sèvres. Who could this message be for? Did one of Rodin's more devoted fans chose this way to pay homage to him? Did a man (or woman) decide to write a very public message to his beloved? Or was it simply intended to put a smile on the faces of passers-by? The possibilities are endless.

Whatever the reason, graffiti artists take note: if you must impose your work on the rest of us, could you at least be sure that your messages include gratuitous flattery?

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