Arts & Culture

Beneath the Surface : SOPO Graffiti

By Jessica Spoto

As an SMCC student I often bus into the busier parts of Portland. On December 29th, a beautiful, sunny Thursday morning, I was taking a walk around the Millcreek area in South Portland about a half mile from the SMCC campus. While on this walk I noticed traditionally beautiful things around me, such as the blue sky, big, fluffy, layered clouds, the shining sun on a very unexpected, warm, winter day here in Maine.

It truly ceases to amaze me that there is an abundance of unconventional beauty, around here in Maine, especially near the SMCC South Portland Campus. I utilize the bus system which makes me have to run my errands by foot a majority of the time. Walking around town makes me notice the little details that someone may not have been able to give their attention to by just driving past in their car. 

One of these things is graffiti. The graffiti ranges from a sticker someone drew and slapped on a park bench to a tagged wall outside of Shaws. Graffiti is often associated with vandalism and other negative connotations. If a person just sees past the negative aspects there is true beauty in the graffiti.

Finding the joy in the simple things of life is what makes it so rich and meaningful.The unexpected, the raw, the real and the artistically creative. One little piece of graffiti can hold so much back story, so many unknowns. Who is the person who created this art? Graffiti can provoke so much thought to the person passing by. 

Yet I digress.

There were lots of taggings of names and words. There were also tags of symbols and stickers that had drawings on it.

Walking along the water on an absolutely breathtaking path behind some houses, buildings, apartment complexes there is this one particular fence. Displayed on this wooden fence, someone had spray painted an alien. Yes, an alien riding in a spaceship. The line work, and the way that the spray paint drips down from the spaceship evokes such chaos, such beauty, such mastery and such skill.

Taking the negative and making it into something positive, that if thought with deeper meaning evokes a sense of delight that this is something that not only should be taken into account within graffiti but also what we all should engrave into our own lifes.

Beauty from the bad, the negative and the broken. Isn’t that just so lovely?

Categories: Arts & Culture

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