Do you know about my fascination with graffiti art and politics? Reprinted from from Al Jazeera, painted walls in Lebanon.
Walls That Speak
The graffiti on the walls of Beirut offers an intriguing insight into both the city and the psyche of its people.
Al Jazeera World Last Modified: 03 Apr 2013 13:06
|The walls of Beirut talk volumes about the city and
its habitants. Many of the city's bullet-scarred walls are covered in
words, drawings, signs, slogans and graffiti art. They offer a glimpse
both of a vibrant and emerging art culture as well as the abiding dark
force of political sectarianism.|
whisper. Sometimes they shout. And sometimes they choose to speak more eloquently," says Tarek Chemali, a researcher. "Walls keep many memories and express opinions."
This energetic film meets young graffiti artists and designers bringing color and creativity to the drab urban greyness. It also meets photographers and authors who have recorded the writings on the walls over time to offer insight into both the capital city and the complex psyche of the Lebanese.
"Beirut's residents use graffiti to leave a fingerprint or a tattoo. To mark out their territory and to show it belongs to a certain party, ideology, or even sect," explains Tala Saleh, a graphic designer and writer. "Each district has its own graffiti which in a way sets its territorial boundaries. Parties don't usually trespass on each others' territory."
With sectarian conflict next door in Syria threatening to spill over into Lebanon, this film provides a colorful perspective on an important and sensitive topic.
"There aren't many areas in Beirut where there aren't political logos. It's because people have thoughts and have something to say," says Mira Mortada, a graphic designer and researcher.