Graffiti and Street Art – Discussion Questions

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pixel2013 / Pixabay  Balloon Girl is a 2002 mural by graffiti artist Banksy

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Discuss the following questions about graffiti and street art with a partner or small group:

  1. What is graffiti? What is a ‘tag’?
  2. What is street art?
  3. What is the difference between graffiti and street art? Is there a difference?
  4. Is street art better than graffiti? Why? / Why not?
  5. Do you like graffiti? Why? / Why not? What kind of art do you like the best? Who is your favourite artist? What do you like the most about them?
  6. Have you ever been involved in creating graffiti or street art? How did you feel?
  7. Would you like to be a graffiti artist? What would your ‘tag’ be?
  8. Can you draw your name or initials in the style of graffiti?
  9. Is there graffiti in your town? What do you think of it?
  10. Does street art or graffiti improve an environment or make it worse?
  11. Are graffiti artists criminals? Should they be punished, e.g. fined or put in prison? Why? / Why not?
  12. Does anybody have the right to paint on somebody else’s property?
  13. Are graffiti artists just people who can’t draw? Do they have talent? How do they compare to traditional artists?
  14. How would you feel if somebody painted graffiti on your property?
  15. Do you know any graffiti artists? Describe them.
  16. What causes graffiti?
  17. Have you ever been to a street art exhibition? Would you like to? What do you think it would be like?
  18. Is graffiti ‘the worst kind of art’, as some people think? Why? / Why not?
  19. Are graffiti artists selfish and inconsiderate towards other people? Why? / Why not?
  20. Are graffiti artists generally male? If so, why?
  21. Why do people feel the need to write their name on things, e.g. a book, table at school, or a wall in town? How is this connected with feelings of possession and belonging?
  22. Who is the best artist… a) in the world today, b) in history, c) that you know personally? Are you a good artist? Is artistic talent innate, or can it be learned?
  23. Is graffiti always political? What is the point of graffiti? What is the point of street art? What do the artists want to say about their lives or society?
  24. Who owns graffiti? If somebody paints on your property, can you legally claim the artwork as your own?
  25. Is graffiti threatening to people? What kind of people feel threatened by graffiti?
  26. Should we remove graffiti and street art? What is the cost of removing it? Who has to pay for it?
  27. Would your school director be happy if you wrote graffiti all over the school building? Why? / Why not?
  28. What would the world be like without graffiti or street art?