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Old November 8th, 2017, 02:18 PM   #6061
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While no inhabited city on earth can be expected to be frozen in time architecturally, the most interesting manage somehow to preserve a significant amount of historic sections and individual architectural gems that lend character to a place.
The destruction of old buildings pains me not because I fetishise the past and want to live in time capsule cities, but because I know I will hate the replacements.

If I didn't think modern buildings were ugly and poorly zoned and often purposefully affronting to their surrounds, there would be no complaints from me; I enjoy progress, and, as you said, diversity makes a city interesting.

I enjoy going to cities that are varied architecturally – it shows their history and makes them feel alive. Cities like Sarajevo, where Turkish and Austro-Hungarian architecture meet in harmony. Or in Budapest, where an Art Nouveau structure can be deftly slotted in between two neo-classical facades. Even early modernism makes me glad – the Looshaus in Vienna, the 'house without eyebrows', beautiful in its own way and yet inoffensive to that around it.

Indeed, the idea of heritage listing buildings only came about as a challenge to post-WWII modernism and the urban planning associated with it. If architects weren't going to build structures people liked, then communities were going to stop them from demolishing the ones they did.

A large part of me is sad that so many of Europe's city centres will remain unchanged (lest we should be faced with another war), but a larger part of me is glad they're kept safe in such a horrible era of architecture.
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Old November 8th, 2017, 05:19 PM   #6062
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The destruction of old buildings pains me not because I fetishise the past and want to live in time capsule cities, but because I know I will hate the replacements.

If I didn't think modern buildings were ugly and poorly zoned and often purposefully affronting to their surrounds, there would be no complaints from me; I enjoy progress, and, as you said, diversity makes a city interesting.

I enjoy going to cities that are varied architecturally – it shows their history and makes them feel alive. Cities like Sarajevo, where Turkish and Austro-Hungarian architecture meet in harmony. Or in Budapest, where an Art Nouveau structure can be deftly slotted in between two neo-classical facades. Even early modernism makes me glad – the Looshaus in Vienna, the 'house without eyebrows', beautiful in its own way and yet inoffensive to that around it.

Indeed, the idea of heritage listing buildings only came about as a challenge to post-WWII modernism and the urban planning associated with it. If architects weren't going to build structures people liked, then communities were going to stop them from demolishing the ones they did.

A large part of me is sad that so many of Europe's city centres will remain unchanged (lest we should be faced with another war), but a larger part of me is glad they're kept safe in such a horrible era of architecture.
Yes, we don't need another war to correct what architects and city planners failed us on...but, a team of well managed bulldozers and wrecking balls would help a lot.
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Old November 8th, 2017, 09:59 PM   #6063
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Yes, we don't need another war to correct what architects and city planners failed us on...but, a team of well managed bulldozers and wrecking balls would help a lot.
What's sad is some of the monstrosities from the 1960s/70s are now deemed old enough to be protected. Some should be saved, of course, but more are added to the list each year, the Kulturpalast being a prime example from Dresden.

Really, if the public finds a structure aesthetically unpleasant, they shouldn't be forced to look at it for eternity just because some academic in an office says it's old enough to be important.

I expect heritage-listing to face a bit of crisis eventually anyway. 'Too many protected buildings' is already a complaint levelled at authorities in some places. I'm sure there are lots of places a developer would love to rip into, whether occupied by something from the 1960s or earlier ...
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Old November 8th, 2017, 10:51 PM   #6064
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Servus Leute,
Does anyone know any more about these news? : http://www.neumarkt-dresden.de/press...b-koenigsufer/

Are they really going to rebuild even more on the opposite side of the river?
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Old November 8th, 2017, 11:26 PM   #6065
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They will rebuild the Narrenhäusel. The place between the finance ministry and Augustusbrücke will be filled with buildings but not with reconstructions.
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Old November 9th, 2017, 04:00 AM   #6066
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Originally Posted by qjone2 View Post
The destruction of old buildings pains me not because I fetishise the past and want to live in time capsule cities, but because I know I will hate the replacements.

If I didn't think modern buildings were ugly and poorly zoned and often purposefully affronting to their surrounds, there would be no complaints from me; I enjoy progress, and, as you said, diversity makes a city interesting.

I enjoy going to cities that are varied architecturally – it shows their history and makes them feel alive. Cities like Sarajevo, where Turkish and Austro-Hungarian architecture meet in harmony. Or in Budapest, where an Art Nouveau structure can be deftly slotted in between two neo-classical facades. Even early modernism makes me glad – the Looshaus in Vienna, the 'house without eyebrows', beautiful in its own way and yet inoffensive to that around it.

Indeed, the idea of heritage listing buildings only came about as a challenge to post-WWII modernism and the urban planning associated with it. If architects weren't going to build structures people liked, then communities were going to stop them from demolishing the ones they did.

A large part of me is sad that so many of Europe's city centres will remain unchanged (lest we should be faced with another war), but a larger part of me is glad they're kept safe in such a horrible era of architecture.
I think the biggest problem Modernism has is one of scale. Actually the scale problem lies more in changes in the urban development model that have come about over the last century -- historically, when you wanted to develop a city you platted a street and a bunch of lots and then sold off the lots individually for others to develop. Only a small handful of structures like palaces, churches, and major cultural attractions could command the resources to be built at a monumental scale in the central city; other space-intensive facilities like cemeteries and heavy industry were therefore relegated to the outskirts.

The change was imperceptible at first (at least in the US). Instead of selling off individual lots, cities began to plat and sell blocks for developers to subdivide. The first major examples of this are known as streetcar suburbs in the US and are among many major cities' most exclusive and sought-after neighborhoods. But the idea carried through into the tract era and yields what are in the US called suburban subdivisions. In inner cities, though, developers began to realize that it was cheaper to develop blocks themselves as units. Every major recent redevelopment you can care to name in the US and Europe -- from Mission Bay in San Francisco to the Barcode in Oslo -- was developed in such a manner.

The problem with this, from an aesthetic perspective, is that an entire block developed by the same entity at the same time is ... boring. Whether or not you care for the architecture, there is much less variety as part of the streetscape in these modern districts than there is in the older districts which were initially subdivided to individual owners and then intensified over successive generations of development. In this setup, individual owners can build out howsoever they want and out of the chaos emerges unity, a vernacular, a common design language over the city, as well as many many follies that serve as a counterpoint. It is why the old cities of Europe and the handful of preserved older cities in the US are beautiful. It is an aesthetic that is frankly impossible to achieve by a single person and is hence discounted in academic settings but it is there and it is what drives touristic interest in a place.

From this perspective, then, a district like the Mitte that has been seeing modernist development on the scale of the old city has a better future than one like the Pragerstrasse, where there was never any attempt at development along anything remotely resembling prewar lot lines. It is precisely because individual follies can blend into a more cohesive whole that gives Dresden's surviving older districts an edge, and it also implies that the only way to give the rest of the inner city equal footing is to reconstruct as much as possible, because that's the only way in this day and age to reclaim the original lot lines which turn out to be absolutely essential for creating and preserving the heart and soul of the city.
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Old November 9th, 2017, 11:25 AM   #6067
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I think the biggest problem Modernism has is one of scale. Actually the scale problem lies more in changes in the urban development model that have come about over the last century -- historically, when you wanted to develop a city you platted a street and a bunch of lots and then sold off the lots individually for others to develop. Only a small handful of structures like palaces, churches, and major cultural attractions could command the resources to be built at a monumental scale in the central city; other space-intensive facilities like cemeteries and heavy industry were therefore relegated to the outskirts.

The change was imperceptible at first (at least in the US). Instead of selling off individual lots, cities began to plat and sell blocks for developers to subdivide. The first major examples of this are known as streetcar suburbs in the US and are among many major cities' most exclusive and sought-after neighborhoods. But the idea carried through into the tract era and yields what are in the US called suburban subdivisions. In inner cities, though, developers began to realize that it was cheaper to develop blocks themselves as units. Every major recent redevelopment you can care to name in the US and Europe -- from Mission Bay in San Francisco to the Barcode in Oslo -- was developed in such a manner.

The problem with this, from an aesthetic perspective, is that an entire block developed by the same entity at the same time is ... boring. Whether or not you care for the architecture, there is much less variety as part of the streetscape in these modern districts than there is in the older districts which were initially subdivided to individual owners and then intensified over successive generations of development. In this setup, individual owners can build out howsoever they want and out of the chaos emerges unity, a vernacular, a common design language over the city, as well as many many follies that serve as a counterpoint. It is why the old cities of Europe and the handful of preserved older cities in the US are beautiful. It is an aesthetic that is frankly impossible to achieve by a single person and is hence discounted in academic settings but it is there and it is what drives touristic interest in a place.

From this perspective, then, a district like the Mitte that has been seeing modernist development on the scale of the old city has a better future than one like the Pragerstrasse, where there was never any attempt at development along anything remotely resembling prewar lot lines. It is precisely because individual follies can blend into a more cohesive whole that gives Dresden's surviving older districts an edge, and it also implies that the only way to give the rest of the inner city equal footing is to reconstruct as much as possible, because that's the only way in this day and age to reclaim the original lot lines which turn out to be absolutely essential for creating and preserving the heart and soul of the city.
All very very true. Great response! Another problem with modern design is the concept of 'dead space' – land that is neither technically private or public, and small enough that it serves no purpose. In bigger cities this is especially cumulative, and results in inefficient zoning, unattractive public spaces, and urban sprawl. In Australia, where we modelled our urban planning on the US (including the demolition of most of our old cities) this is a problem we're only just realising needs to be reeled in, though the damage has been done. I assume it's similar in much of the world.

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They will rebuild the Narrenhäusel. The place between the finance ministry and Augustusbrücke will be filled with buildings but not with reconstructions.
Has that been determined definitively? I think the GHND is still pushing for more reconstructions, or, at the very least, buildings that resemble what was once there.
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Old November 9th, 2017, 06:07 PM   #6068
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I think the biggest problem Modernism has is one of scale. Actually the scale problem lies more in changes in the urban development model that have come about over the last century -- historically, when you wanted to develop a city you platted a street and a bunch of lots and then sold off the lots individually for others to develop. Only a small handful of structures like palaces, churches, and major cultural attractions could command the resources to be built at a monumental scale in the central city; other space-intensive facilities like cemeteries and heavy industry were therefore relegated to the outskirts.

The change was imperceptible at first (at least in the US). Instead of selling off individual lots, cities began to plat and sell blocks for developers to subdivide. The first major examples of this are known as streetcar suburbs in the US and are among many major cities' most exclusive and sought-after neighborhoods. But the idea carried through into the tract era and yields what are in the US called suburban subdivisions. In inner cities, though, developers began to realize that it was cheaper to develop blocks themselves as units. Every major recent redevelopment you can care to name in the US and Europe -- from Mission Bay in San Francisco to the Barcode in Oslo -- was developed in such a manner.

The problem with this, from an aesthetic perspective, is that an entire block developed by the same entity at the same time is ... boring. Whether or not you care for the architecture, there is much less variety as part of the streetscape in these modern districts than there is in the older districts which were initially subdivided to individual owners and then intensified over successive generations of development. In this setup, individual owners can build out howsoever they want and out of the chaos emerges unity, a vernacular, a common design language over the city, as well as many many follies that serve as a counterpoint. It is why the old cities of Europe and the handful of preserved older cities in the US are beautiful. It is an aesthetic that is frankly impossible to achieve by a single person and is hence discounted in academic settings but it is there and it is what drives touristic interest in a place.

From this perspective, then, a district like the Mitte that has been seeing modernist development on the scale of the old city has a better future than one like the Pragerstrasse, where there was never any attempt at development along anything remotely resembling prewar lot lines. It is precisely because individual follies can blend into a more cohesive whole that gives Dresden's surviving older districts an edge, and it also implies that the only way to give the rest of the inner city equal footing is to reconstruct as much as possible, because that's the only way in this day and age to reclaim the original lot lines which turn out to be absolutely essential for creating and preserving the heart and soul of the city.
Amazing post. I started to realise this a while ago, while the quality of building construction and attention to detail is a tragic loss that seems as though it wont be returning any time soon, it is the amalgamation of small plot sizes into city blocks that is destorying our cities. I noticed this in templebar, in Dublin a while ago walking through it. Most of the buildings are modern, but the medieval street pattern and small building plot sizes remains. So its an interesting and quite beautiful area.
https://www.google.ie/search?q=moder...G8eTYYRq-ee1M:
Look at these modern canal houses in amsterdam. The variety in facade design ,and small plots makes it quite aesthetically pleasing. So I think while modern architecture is certainly of less merit than past periods, which is understandable due to reasons such as cost of construction labour nowadays, it is the small plot size and building variety that is the saddest loss
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Old November 9th, 2017, 06:59 PM   #6069
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I also think its one of the greatest contradictions of our times that our buildings have never been so thermally efficient..so environmentally friendly(compared to past..), so secure, so structurally sound and resistant to elements, but never in history have they been so aesthetically poor and boring and alienating from their environment.
If only we could harness the best elements of past architecture designs and combine them with modern technical advances..
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Old November 9th, 2017, 11:59 PM   #6070
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[QUOTE=wakka12;143395119]I also think its one of the greatest contradictions of our times that our buildings have never been so thermally efficient..so environmentally friendly(compared to past..), so secure, so structurally sound and resistant QUOTE]





Believe it or not, but beginning in 1920 and ending 1985, the thermal efficiency went down in Germany. Beginning after WW1 and extremely after WW2, the Quality and insulation of buildings in Germany went down hill.
The worst new builds came in 1978 to 1984 and where ironically called "Super insulation Series". 100 qu m2 needed as much heating than a 800 sq m2 of an average building build in 1918!
The quality and thickness of buildings in Germany came down drastically between those years. After the war the money was missing. After the WW2 came new material trials. Especially concrete is extremely cold and cracks after view years. Concrete is extremely in need of constant maintenance. The situation is so bad, that Universities believe that concrete will not be much used in Germany in the near future.
After WW2 the Society demanded a new human. This more or less socialist "Frankfurter School" scheme demanded a new world architecture like Bauhaus. It was supposed to be as simple as possible for all countries to join. This was to ease the formation of a world government, since all cities would look alike.
Another group pushing this way was ironically an American Capitalist group that even had a speech at Congress in 1939, demanding that all goods should have a short shelf expectancy to create full employment by replacing everything all the time. Both movements joint and we got window frames made from iron with single glass panels in them. Germans had not used single glass panels in over 400 Years. But this does not include other continents. We talk about Europe. Universities in Europe estimated that all buildings between WW2 and 1990 should get an overhaul. Other things like City landscapes have an effect as well. In medieval towns with city walls around, wind was not a big problem. Owning the last 5000 sq feet Villa on hillside on a cull de sac is also less efficient against wind!
Anyway, there are university studies about this.
But there are exceptions: Just as New Zeeland or the US west coast have found out; The old buildings are structurally more sound, but not soft/movable enough against earthquakes!
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Old November 13th, 2017, 05:04 PM   #6071
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Fabulous updates, I love the Elbe mansions! Perfect place to live
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Old November 14th, 2017, 01:50 AM   #6072
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Nice;
That moment, when you have no room to put up a fence, but you desperately want that fence anyway...

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Those humanoid sewer rats who haven't got the slightest understanding of such beautiful pieces of culture and their value, let alone respect for them, who leave their graffiti mess everywhere they happen to dawdle, always drive me madly angry! As if they don't have enough run-down, weed-engulfed, stinky commieblocks where they and their "street art" can thrive in their natural habitat, among fellow quadruped rats.

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Even early modernism makes me glad – the Looshaus in Vienna, the 'house without eyebrows', beautiful in its own way and yet inoffensive to that around it.
It is said emperor Franz Joseph hated it so much, that he avoided looking at it for the rest of his life, even going as far as to stop using the exit at the Michaelplatz, one of the buildings flanking and being visible from that square, being the Looshaus. It's also said he even had the windows of the Hofburg Palace permanently shut, so he could not see the "ugly building". But whether or not these are actually true, one thing's for sure- at the time of its construction/inauguration, the people were disgusted and outraged by its bland, featureless look. And today, we'd be utterly glad if we could have something like this dominating our cities, instead of the modernist abominations. Just goes to show how heartbreakingly low our standards of beauty and good taste have fallen, and how much our senses have atrophied, compared to those of our recent ancestors.
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Old November 14th, 2017, 01:46 PM   #6073
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That moment, when you have no room to put up a fence, but you desperately want that fence anyway...

It is said emperor Franz Joseph hated it so much, that he avoided looking at it for the rest of his life, even going as far as to stop using the exit at the Michaelplatz, one of the buildings flanking and being visible from that square, being the Looshaus. It's also said he even had the windows of the Hofburg Palace permanently shut, so he could not see the "ugly building". But whether or not these are actually true, one thing's for sure- at the time of its construction/inauguration, the people were disgusted and outraged by its bland, featureless look. And today, we'd be utterly glad if we could have something like this dominating our cities, instead of the modernist abominations. Just goes to show how heartbreakingly low our standards of beauty and good taste have fallen, and how much our senses have atrophied, compared to those of our recent ancestors.
I'd pay to see poor Franz Joseph drive by certain districts of Vienna today The horror!
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Old November 15th, 2017, 02:37 PM   #6074
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That moment, when you have no room to put up a fence, but you desperately want that fence anyway...
Its not a fence, its a plantgrid!

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Those humanoid sewer rats who haven't got the slightest understanding of such beautiful pieces of culture and their value, let alone respect for them, who leave their graffiti mess everywhere they happen to dawdle, always drive me madly angry! As if they don't have enough run-down, weed-engulfed, stinky commieblocks where they and their "street art" can thrive in their natural habitat, among fellow quadruped rats.
Relax yourself dude. Its only some Paint. If they rework those pieces, they'll get painted anyway
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Old November 15th, 2017, 03:16 PM   #6075
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Sure, but that tends to justify any abuse...as long as someone is expected to come along at some time to remedy the abuse.

In the meantime, we have to suffer through the visual assault on our senses by those who take it upon themselves to alter and trash what others admire and respect. How's that fair or reasonable? "Just paint" to one is a highly invasive intrusion to another.
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Old November 15th, 2017, 03:21 PM   #6076
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It is said emperor Franz Joseph hated it so much, that he avoided looking at it for the rest of his life, even going as far as to stop using the exit at the Michaelplatz, one of the buildings flanking and being visible from that square, being the Looshaus. It's also said he even had the windows of the Hofburg Palace permanently shut, so he could not see the "ugly building". But whether or not these are actually true, one thing's for sure- at the time of its construction/inauguration, the people were disgusted and outraged by its bland, featureless look. And today, we'd be utterly glad if we could have something like this dominating our cities, instead of the modernist abominations. Just goes to show how heartbreakingly low our standards of beauty and good taste have fallen, and how much our senses have atrophied, compared to those of our recent ancestors.
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I'd pay to see poor Franz Joseph drive by certain districts of Vienna today The horror!
So much for being emperor! One would think FJ would have had something to say about his view, rather than having to alter his regimen that much. I guess he didn't control the Design-Review Board.
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Old November 15th, 2017, 04:42 PM   #6077
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How's that fair or reasonable?
It's not! He is just extremely overreacting
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Old November 16th, 2017, 12:28 AM   #6078
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Its not a fence, its a plantgrid!
I know, I was just kidding.

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Relax yourself dude. Its only some Paint. If they rework those pieces, they'll get painted anyway
keepthepast already made my point clear. To that, I shall add: I admit it, I don't exactly react in a civil or diplomatic manner when it comes to the graffiti mess one encounters every 100 meters nowadays, especially on landmarks with cultural significance, such as traditional buildings or monuments. That just hits me right in the stomach. On the contrary, I'm vicious, outspoken, and quite mean when criticizing this degeneracy. I despise it and I don't make a secret out of it at all. I do understand that most people, even those who hate this "street art" just as much as I do, would adopt a more moderate form of criticism for it, and I can totally understand that. But that's just not me, I don't see why I should waste my precious reserves of kid-glove treatment on this:


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He is just extremely overreacting
And am freggin' proud of it! Disagree with my "ruthlesness" all you want (I'd totally understand), but I don't think I'm overreacting at all strictly with respect to the seriousness of this pest defiantly called "street art". Unless you would also consider it an overreaction to harshly criticize people dumping their livestock droppings on the street, 'cuz after all, it's only some digestive residue, and the public sanitation office will clean them up anyway...the next time they'll come around your street.
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Old November 16th, 2017, 05:41 PM   #6079
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Thing is your're extremely generalizing , thats not street art, its just plain stupid Graffiti without any sense of artistic claim. "Street Art" in contrary has a distinctive artistic value which is not shown here at all.
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Old November 16th, 2017, 08:31 PM   #6080
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Thing is your're extremely generalizing , thats not street art, its just plain stupid Graffiti
So now it's generalization that bothers you. Originally, thing was that I was overreacting, that the smear on those columns was no big deal because they'll clean them up anyway. Now you've switched the point of contention from my passionate overreaction to what is and what isn't street art. It definitely isn't street art, that was my point, it's just that the authors often call it that way, even creations like the ones in the pictures I posted. When the legislative or the society in general debates or proposes harsher punishment for those who smear the public place with graffiti (regardless of the level of its artistic appeal), as in the pictures I posted, their counter-argument is often that "art should not be illegal", they clearly consider any graffiti doodle to be art.

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Originally Posted by Tolbert View Post
"Street Art" in contrary has a distinctive artistic value which is not shown here at all.
You're missing the point, friend. It doesn't matter what you, I or anyone else considers to qualify as "street art", thing is, it's illegal to use buildings as your personal canvas, whether for plain stupid graffiti or creations which may have some "artistic value", and there's a damn good reason for that. But because one can get away with it so easily, we're drowning in this crap. There are places specifically designated for street art and "street art", that's where people should go to spray paint whatever the hell they want, not on buildings and monuments, regardless of how "artistic" the doodles may be, because it just looks abhorrent and degenerate, again, no matter how artistic you or Mike from Kansas may consider it to be. THAT, was and remains the point. I have no interest in continuing an argument with an ever changing point of contention, so if you don't mind, I'll go back on topic.
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