Stencil graffiti

(Redirected from Stencil art)

Stencil graffiti is a form of graffiti that makes use of stencils made out of paper, cardboard, or other media to create an image or text that is easily reproducible. The desired design is cut out of the selected medium and then the image is transferred to a surface through the use of spray paint or roll-on paint.

Stencil graffiti on a wall in Namur, Belgium

The process of stencilling involves applying paint across a stencil to form an image on a surface below. Sometimes multiple layers of stencils are used on the same image to add colors or create the illusion of depth.

Because the stencil stays nearly unchanged throughout its use, it is easier for an artist to replicate what could be a complicated piece - at a high rate when compared to other conventional tagging methods.

History edit

Stencil graffiti began in the 1960s.

French artist Ernest Pignon-Ernest's stencilled silhouette of a nuclear bomb victim was spray painted in the south of France in 1966 (Plateau d'Albion, Vaucluse)[citation needed]

Blek le Rat's first spray painted stencils were seen in Paris in 1981. He was influenced by the graffiti artists of New York City but wanted to create something of his own.

"Happy 1984" - Stencil graffiti found on the Berlin Wall in 2005. The object depicted is a DualShock video game controller.
An early use of stencil for a tag name, 'Caper', this was by Dee (aka Caper) around 1987. He was part of the graffiti writers group called R2F 'Ready to Fascinate', later known as the Vinyl Junkies from Hayes and Southall, London / UK.
Political graffiti in Poland.
Kraków ul. Podgórska 15.

Australian photographer Rennie Ellis documented some of the earliest examples of stencil art to appear in Sydney and Melbourne in his 1985 book The All New Australian Graffiti. In the introduction to the book, Ellis noted that US photographer Charles Gatewood had written to him and sent him photographs of similar stencil graffiti that had recently appeared in New York City, leading Ellis to speculate that:

... unlike our subway-style graffiti, which is nothing more than a copy of a well-established New York tradition, the symbols of Australia and America had originated separately and unknown to each other.[1]

Over the years this form of graffiti has become a worldwide subculture. The members are linked through the Internet and the images spray-painted on the urban canvas they place throughout the world. Many of its members connect through blogs and websites that are specifically built to display works, get feedback on posted works, and receive news of what is going on in the world of stencil graffiti.

Stencil graffiti is illegal in some jurisdictions, and many of the members of this subculture shroud their identities in aliases. Above / Tavar Zawacki, Banksy, Blek le Rat, Vhils, Shepard Fairey and Jef Aérosol are some names that are synonymous with this subculture.

See also edit

Further reading edit

  • Manco, Tristan, Stencil Graffiti, Thames and Hudson, 2002. ISBN 978-0500283424

Notes edit

C215 Community Service, Criteres ed. 2011

References edit

  1. ^ Ellis, Rennie; The All New Australian Graffiti, Sun Books (Macmillan), Melbourne, 1985 (ISBN 0-7251-0484-8)