During my time in Athens, Greece (September, 2012) I was continually astounded by the immensity of the graffiti scene. So much so, the second day I was there I dedicated to walking around and finding as much graffiti as I possibly could.
It’s not that it was particularly fancy graffiti, but just that it was everywhere. EVERYWHERE. I think the coolest thing for me was recognizing the same artists in different places. I tried really hard to find some artists putting up, but they all eluded me.
Coming from Canada where any graffiti is taken down the next day after it’s put up, it brought a lot of questions to mind: Is it just that everybody – all the store owners – in the country are too poor to pay money for paint to cover it up? Is it that the graffiti scene is too vicious if it’s painted over it’ll be graffiti’d over again that night? What do the citizens think of it? Is it abnormal for them? Do store owners like it?
I know on some of the stores, artists were commissioned to put up some nice fitting graffiti.
When talking to the locals this scene started around 2005 when political and civil unrest began to surface. Before that, it wasn’t as covered, from what I understood. See Part II of this series.
What do you think of it? Could you enjoy living in a city like this? Does it encourage art?