New Orleans, Louisiana. The Grand Movie Theater has sat vacant for 10 years and its expansive walls have proved an irresistible and frequent target of graffiti attack.
Then Muralist Brandan Odums and other local artists decided to change the blight and negativity into a symbol of peace with an extensive mural. Odums has successfully created graffiti-styled murals on several other vacant buildings in New Orleans.
After four days of priming to cover the graffiti tags and prep the wall for the mural, the thanks from the local graffiti taggers was a fresh round of graffiti tags.
Two steps forward, one step back.
The hope is to have the Peace Wall completed in time for the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.
Salt Lake City, Utah: Felony and misdeameanor charges have been filed against five graffiti taggers in Salt Lake City, aged 20 to 23. These taggers have cost the city thousands of dollars in graffiti abatement costs. Some large scale roof graffiti cost and graffiti on historic buildings exceeded $25k.
A determined effort by the police department and gang unit lead to the arrest of the taggers. Many others are being pursued. In the meantime, the arrests and charges should make taggers think twice before tagging again.
In Port Angeles, Washington, Richard Schneider, after retiring from the National Park Service, decided to take matters into his own hands. He has removed over 70 graffiti tags over the past few months. He is highly motivated to improve this city and community by eliminating graffiti blight. He attempts to remove graffiti tags as quickly as possible to discourage them from reoccurring. By removing the tags quickly, the hope is that the taggers move on to areas less visible to the community or stop all together.
Chris Campagna is a Chicago resident of Historic Pullman neighborhood. He is also and artist, a father, a advocate for his community, and very creative. When his garage door was spray painted with graffiti, he decided to turn it into a giant chalkboard for his kids and other kids in the neighborhood to draw on any time.
Brooklyn, New York - As Jackie Robinson stood for freedom in the face of ugly racism, now his sculpture which celebrates his courage has also been subjected to similar ugly racist attack.
"There was the word "N". And next to that there was a picture of a swastika and over that it said 'Heil,'" said Patrick, an area resident.
The inscription on the sculpture includes the following words "Robinson endured racist taunts, jeers, and death threats that would have broken the spirit of a lesser man.
U.S. Senator Charles Schumer released a statement saying, "Almost every Saturday morning I stop by the statue on my bike, and am deeply moved each time. Defacing the Jackie Robinson statue is a dagger in the heart to everything America stands
for, and I hope those who are responsible are caught, punished, and taught why what they did is so disgusting and offensive."
Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz said in a statement, "I am beyond disgusted by the defacing of this monument to tolerance and civil rights in America's Playground. This reprehensible behavior is a direct affront to the millions of Brooklynites that stand for diversity and respect. Whatever socially disconnected individual is responsible for this racist, anti-Semitic and frankly antisocial act is clearly consumed by self-hate. When apprehended by New York's Finest, I hope the punishment will serve as a strong deterrent to any punk thinking of copying these actions."
More at ABC 7 New York
Gary Youth Leadership Council and Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson are taking steps to organize motivated volunteers to remove graffiti in Gary, Indiana. The group of student volunteers, primarily between 12 and 18 year old, has quadrupled in size since it was first formed. This is a highly motivated group hoping to make a positive impact on their community
"We are improving Gary little by little," said Samantha Brooks, aged 14. "And I think we can really make a comeback."
More at nwitimes.com
Brooklyn, New York - Based on the lack of complaints from local residents, the positive message of a rash of "Believe in Love" graffiti tags seems to have won some over. Does the message matter? How about a positive message tagged over a well established mural? How about on your building?
More at NYDailyNews.com including photos.
Pawtucket, Rhode Island - After a rash of recent graffiti tagging that has blighted buildings in the industrial districts and other neighborhoods, the City's Department of Public Works devised a multi-pronged strategy to identify, track and map graffiti incidents.
According to detective Edward Berube, "if it’s not removed quickly, it sends a message that it can fester … . The objective is identifying new graffiti, quickly removing it and using the documentation”
More at ProvidenceJournal.Com
Bellville, Illinois - A new proposed ordinance requires property owners to be responsible for removing graffiti on their property within 14 days of notice by county officials with a fine of $75 to $750 a day for each day the graffiti remains.
More at KMOV.com St. Louis
Colorado Springs, Colorado - A rash of vulgar graffiti tagging in Colorado Springs has gottent worse as the weather has gotten warmer.
"The way we count graffiti is every tag would be $54.11," explained Mark Davis with the Graffiti Removal Team, pointing towards graffiti on a wall. "So if we were to cover that up, sandblast it off is how we would do it, $54.11 and we probably did 50 of them today."
More at KOAA.com
From Clean City Innovation Graffiti Watch