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Chinese Get Groovy with Graffiti Print E-mail
by Tom McGregor    Tue, Feb 11, 2014, 12:12 AM

BEIJING: TV documentary producer from Fort Worth, Lance Crayon, has captured intruiging footage of graffiti artists marking their territory on the streets of China's capital city. Supposedly, the Chinese government has even permitted these clandestine activities to occur, despite concerns that it may encourage American-style street gangs to migrate to Beijing. 

According to World of Chinese magazine, "Spray Paint Beijing, one of the first documentaries ever made covering China’s emergent graffiti culture, is set to be shown in Beijing later this month. Unlike in many other countries, graffiti artists are not seen as criminals or hoodlums in China. The government often requisitions, or even commissions, their artworks for its own ends. A government sponsored tournament held just before the 2008 Olympics ended with over 10,000 square meters of graffiti painted in Beijing."

In the US, many crime-rdden neighborhoods, where poverty prevails and street gangs prowl, the urban scenery has been blighted by graffiti, in which gangsters announce their demoralizing presence. Nevertheless, Beijing officials believe that they should endorse graffiti 'with Chinese characterisitics' to promote more harmony amongst such artists.

As reported by World of Chinese, "In what is often seen as ironic, graffiti artists are given an incredibly free range for expression in China: “I think graffiti in China will dominate the international graffiti scene in years to come. Foreign graffiti artists are already coming to China to paint with a level of freedom they don’t have in their own countries,” said Lance Crayon, director of Spray Paint. Filmed over the course of one year, the film follows a handful of both foreign and Chinese graffiti writers in the capital of China."

Lance Crayon is scheduled to host a showing of his documentary film at the Zajia Bar in Beijing on Friday February 22 at 5 p.m.

To read the entire article from World of Chinese magazine, link here:

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