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I WRITE WHAT I LIKE (article first published : 2007-04-6)

I Write What I Like is an exhibition by Durban graffiti artists at the Democratic Gallery at the BAT Centre.

“The exhibition crosses all boundaries in terms of the conventional elements of arts that should occupy gallery spaces,” says a BAT Centre representative. “The BAT Centre, however, is the keeper and supporter of all progressive spheres of the arts and culture in Durban, KZN.

“Being part of the youthful hip hop culture, this exhibition serves as a tool of integration and free expression,” the publicity material continues. “It is a colourful, illustrative art that seeks to evoke dialogue about contemporary events and challenges. The art form seems to be only one of its kind which plays around with the basic components of literature, namely the letters of the alphabet by making them more than plain symbols of communication, instead giving them more character which serves to arrest the eye of the viewer long enough for the viewer seek for something more –the message. This is opposed to writing a simple straightforward message, which sounds so much like a command –something that is usually ignored by adolescent person.

“Grafitti is symbol of the growing ways of communication and how art has become an intricate aspect of human dialogue. Graffiti is clear-cut example of that connection between the literal sphere and the visual art sphere.”

The initiative to exhibit in a gallery is an initiative by the Durban Graffiti and Hip Hop artists to curb the vandalism that takes place in the name of graffiti –where public buildings are defaced. One of the bigger roles of such an exhibition is to see it grow beyond the local borders because it is not a Durban or South African phenomenon, but it is international.

I Write What I Like runs at the Democratic Gallery at the BAT Centre until April 28. More information on 031 332 0451.




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