Taschen, $39.99, 320 pages
It’s an unfortunate sign of maturity when you start looking at graffiti as vandalism. Trespass is an exploration of art in public spaces, and especially the uncommissioned type. Although graffiti is looked at, it is not the only kind; sculpture, prints, paintings, and even gardens are explored. The long and fascinating history of how people have decorated their surroundings is explored, and what artists, both professional and not-so-professional, have done to fill their space with art is far from merely educational, but honestly fun in some spots.
The oversized book (weighing in at five pounds) is definitely the best showcase for the subject matter. The text pieces are short and to-the-point, making for ideal separations between the chapters. Most of these sections are a celebration of the art following, and provide a curator’s glimpse into background of the art and artists. It also includes some performance art, as well as some art that may not be considered “appropriate” for some. Bottom line: this is a very thorough cataloging of public art. For anyone interested in seeing what artists can do with the materials at hand, this is a great coffee table book.
Reviewed by Jamais Jochim