WHENEVER I SEE BOXCAR ART, I wonder. I wonder about the artists, what inspires them, why they choose boxcars as their canvas.
Are they sending a message? Marking territory? Vandalizing?
And when do they paint?
So many questions pop into my mind as I lift my camera and aim the lens toward the mobile art. Where are these phantom artists who create these traveling galleries of art?
© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling
I love to see “tagging” and fun stuff like this even if I don’t have a clue what it means. 🙂
I share your appreciation for this type of art, as long as it’s not harmful.
They are doing all three Audrey. Vandalizing, marking their territory and sending a message.
Something about it reminds one of dogs marking trees – but it can be very creative.
Now that’s an interesting comparison.
An article that might approach answering your questions is from MinnPost: https://www.minnpost.com/stroll/2012/07/train-graffiti-and-its-long-strange-thoroughly-american-lineage/
Thanks for sharing this link, Ken.
Here in the Netherlands we find the graffiti art everywhere. I often wonder myself who these artists are and why they choose such a public canvas.
And what are the public canvases chosen by these artists in the Netherlands?
Walls, buildings, highway and train station walls, public utility boxes. Seems like nothing is off limits. I was a bit shocked when I first moved here and saw them everywhere. Now I view them with a different eye of wonder.
I have always considered this “grafitti” and have resented the “artists” who paint on other people’s property without their permission. However, several years ago when I was visiting friends in Germany and saw grafetti there for the first time, I complained only to have my host tell me that he thought it was “art.” And he didn’t mind it at all. I guess it’s different strokes for different folks, huh?
For me it depends on where the art is painted and what type of graffiti.
Aha! Thanks for helping me spell graffiti! And btw, I agree with you.
Oh, that’s a difficult word to spell. Spellcheck helps.
I have always been interested in train art for the same reasons you stated. Living in Waseca most of my life and also wonder who does this art. They have a lot of talent that they should be using in better ways. The only railroad cars I don’t like are the ones that have vulgar remarks & drawings.
I’m with you on certainly not appreciating the bad words and art.
Did you ever read The Boxcar Children? I visualize these cars as being abandoned and hideway homes for some.
No, I haven’t read that series. But my kids have.
There was a time back in the 1970s, 1980s, when NYC subway cars were completely graffitied over. Inside and out. It was during the late 1980s, early 1990s when new graffiti-proofed cars were introduced.
And how does one graffiti proof a car?
The walls of the car can’t take marker or paint. It does not stick.