Artist Daniel Kaplon has been taking photographs of other people's graffiti messages worldwide for many years. This documentation captures the sense of hope, distinct from the negative perception of graffiti.
This freedom to communicate; whether it's the protest against a political leader or that written agitation against a brand (Nike) which could be perceived as humorous and somewhat refreshing in its profane, flippant dig at capitalization allows many voices to be heard. The hope in the potential of individual voices to be heard through graffiti also shows the common themes universally about consumerism and capitalism. These voices are extremely liberating.
Daniel was one of the artists who spoke at the In Conversation program as part of Weapons of Mass Consumption. His work was some of the most talked about and it was a great opportunity to hear him speak about his works.
One of the most fascinating aspects of his love of 'graffiti' was that of people wanting to make their mark and claim 'I was here' (or I waz here) so to speak! The images he has produced for the exhibition really have given a voice to the unknown person who has produced the text but there is also the viewer's voice being reflected in this images as well, often agreeing with the sentiment.
During the In Conversation program Daniel said that he has almost a catalogue of images of graffiti and that he can group together various statements on a variety of themes due to the large quantity of images but also due to similar statements being made all over the world. His photographs certainly have struck a chord with our viewers and it has been great to hear the conversations about these striking images.