There is a strange and quiet relationship between the viewer and the mural.
For some, the mural is only fleeting and peripheral— a pop of colorful images and enigmatic messages adorn lost corner-side brick walls, as we catch a delightfully brief moment of visual interest in our otherwise mundane, city- plagued drives.
Or, for others, the mural relationship is simply apart of the routine. We witness daily the same street-side familial homage, whispered boulevard work of art, or avenue painted political message. Maybe some of us have grown accustomed to the oversized cartoons of mystifying quotes or breathtaking larger- than- life tributes, as we proceed on our drive to the super-market, pass beneath the freeway, or as we walk to the bus stop. Yes, for some, these works of art have blended into the unbending routine of the day, fading into the city scene as does a corner store or yellow hydrant.
But regardless of how new a mural may be to our eyes, it may be that at one time, these astonishing murals instilled in us a small sense of community, a sense of familiarity, a sense of frustration, or a sense of wonderment. It may have sparked, deep inside, an inner dialogue or it may have stimulated a memory once lost.
What is it about that first moment? That initial instance when you see a work of art in the street, that proportionally far surpasses the category of Graffiti? Well of course, we first absorb the work as quickly as our allotted time allows— the image, the colors, the message, the size. Second, we most often wonder, who? Who is this mystery character who has committed so much heart to this block, this wall, this ordinary slice of space? But above these thoughts, there is an undeniable, deep rooted understanding that I am positive every observer processes to one degree or another when they first see a mural.
This artwork is outside and is for everyone to see.
Maybe this observation is obvious and anticlimactic. But wait! There is something profound to be discovered behind this small, ordinary realization.
It seems that in this day and age of buzzing city energy and endless regimens, the art feels lost. Yes I am sure you have heard this before, and this is by no means to say that art is lost, but in many ways, if we want art, we must really strive to find it. Certainly, if you squint past the advertisements and the television commercials you can find a slice of artistry somewhere, but pure, unadulterated, art -for- arts-sake -art, is hard to casually stumble upon.
How special is it that for a brief moment of the day, we witness the works and expressions of artists, not on our computers, not on the television, but outside! In the street! In the truest corners of our community?
How special is it, that these works challenge our senses in some way to activate a thought, a judgement, a memory, a feeling of sympathy, of sadness, of disgust, of appreciation, or even spark a small smile?
How special is it, that for an uncommon instant, we truly stumbled upon art?
With the new launch of our blog, the Venice Art Crawl would like to introduce our theme this December: