Aesthetics for Birds

Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone

AFB X JAAC Discussions #2: Chackal on Street Art


The second AFB x JAAC Discussion this year will appear in two weeks, on Thursday, November 17! We will be discussing a paper by Tony Chackal (University of Georgia) called “Of Materiality and Meaning: The Illegality Condition in Street Art” from JAAC’s Fall 2016 volume, 74 (4). It’s available online here; abstract below the fold.

Christiane Merritt (Washington University in St. Louis) will be providing the critical précis, and Chackal will provide a response. And they will both be available for discussion in the comments afterward.

Mark it in your calendars, and we hope to see you then!

Here is the paper abstract:

Street art is an art form that entails creating public works incorporating the street physically and in their meaning. That physical property is employed as an artistic resource in street art raises two questions. Are street artworks necessarily illegal? Does being illegal change the nature of production and aesthetic appreciation? First, I argue street artworks must be in the street. On my view, both the physical and sociocultural senses of the street can be constitutive of meaning. Second, I argue that illegality is a prototypical and paradigmatic feature of street art. While illegality alone does not make works better than sanctioned street art, it affects the production process and changes what is available to appreciate.

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