Not necessarily opposed to graffiti, yet not impressed with the wall pictured here, are Elizabeth Blume, Zac Devine and Eddie Nicholson (foreground), all of Lismore.
Not necessarily opposed to graffiti, yet not impressed with the wall pictured here, are Elizabeth Blume, Zac Devine and Eddie Nicholson (foreground), all of Lismore. Jacklyn Wagner

Graffiti is not a pretty sight

WHEN it comes to graffiti these Lismore teenagers are united in their views of what looks good and what looks like trash.

Eddie Nicholson, 19, Elizabeth Blume, 19, and Zac Devine, 18, all believe ‘tagging’ is ‘disgusting’.

But creative expression that delivers graphic visuals combined with political comment is an art form that should be promoted throughout blank space in the city, not just on the Ballina Street Bridge.

“Graffiti in places like Brooklyn, New York, are really well done. They are pieces of art. Street art,” Eddie said.

Elizabeth said political comment, like those which appeared on a wall in Keen Street, ‘sparked debate’, although she agreed it could be done with more artistic flair.

However, Lismore MP Thomas George would prefer to see all graffiti stamped out and has welcomed the announcement that the first Graffiti Action Day will be held on Sunday, May 2.

“It is an absolute eyesore for locals and tourists to see graffiti in streets, on buildings, fences, public transport or park equipment,” he said.

Mr George said graffiti had a negative financial and social impact on communities, and he hoped groups across his electorate would take part in the event, which will be supported by Keep Australia Beautiful.

Police from the Richmond Local Area Command are pleased to report a downturn in malicious damage, of which graffiti is a component.

Det Insp Greg Moore said a ‘whole of government’ campaign to eradicate graffiti was working, with councils spending thousands of dollars to paint over defaced public property and police working to identify graffiti tags and press fines on those who offend.

Richmond Local Area Command crime prevention officer Snr Const Michael Hogan said the key to managing graffiti was to paint it out immediately.

“It is important that graffiti offenders lose that identification tag so they lose ownership of that wall, or seat,” he said.

“By reacting to it very quickly, by fixing or repairing the area, loses the attraction for people to do it again.”

How the battle is going

The first Graffiti Action Day will be held on Sunday, May 2.

Malicious damage incidents are on a downward trend in the Richmond Local Area Command.

Graffiti can be pleasing to the eye if done properly.



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