The best and worst aspect of walking around in Athens, Greece is the graffiti that covers most surfaces.
It is the best, because I saw beautiful, creative spontaneous art, political messages I am sympathetic too and ones I cannot agree with, preordered murals, and first of all a wide range of self-expression. I also saw tagging all over and less sophisticated forms of expressing anger and dissatisfaction. or as Maria Chatzidakis wrote: “The current socioeconomic and political crisis in Greece has rendered Athens a living city canvas that attracts artists, art lovers, young people, tourists, journalists, and photographers.” Below is a selection of 59 graffiti from the pictures I shot on my week-long visit. Enjoy, be inspired, or outraged.
- Graffiti and Street Art: Reading, Writing and Representing the City by Konstantinos Avramidis and Myrto Tsilimpounidi: “The contributors of this book critically investigate underexplored urban contexts in which graffiti and street art appear, shed light on previously unexamined aspects of these practices, and introduce innovative methodologies regarding the treatment of these images.”
- Modern Greece: What Everyone Needs to Know by Stathis Kalyvas. If you want to understand the political context of which contemporary graffiti in Athens grew out this book is a good starting point.
- Graffiti in Athens – Facebook page with 36000+ followers
- Graffiti city: The rise of street art in Athens by Janice Dickson: 2017 article in the Independent
- Graffiti and Wall Art in Athens by Matt Barrett: short history/article on Athens Guide
- Graffiti slogans and the construction of collective identity: evidence from the anti-austerity protests in Greece by Dimitris Serafis,E. Dimitris Kitis and Argiris Archakis: academic article that “examines the way that collective identity was discursively constructed during the anti-austerity protests of 28 and 29 June 2011 on the environs of the Greek Parliament.” On “An Interdisciplinary Journal of Language, Discourse & Communication Studies”