Staff Writer

Art or vandalism? This question has been the focal point behind the street art form known as graffiti for many years.

Even though some people consider it an art form, there are many others in the world who would disagree and consider graffiti a form of vandalism and even a crime. I personally see street art as one of the most beautiful forms of art there is in existence.

It is so authentic and powerful to me. I see this art as very real because it’s primarily based on the streets and mostly done by regular people, not well-known artists who graduated from a prestigious art school.

While not every artist will have the op- portunity to have his or her work in a gallery, there are artists that will go unknown.

Since graffiti is a street-based art form, basically everyone who wants to be an artist can contribute.

Graffiti is more than just a name on the side of a wall or train.

It comes in many forms like murals, tagging, graffiti art and so many others. Murals, tagging and graffiti art are among the most recognizable forms of street art, and they are the most common.

Tagging is all those names in bubble letters that you see on the side of walls. Graffiti art is when someone uses spray paint to create art, and lastly, a mural is generally on a bigger scale,

New York, London, Los Angeles and generally every big city is the home of some type of street art.

A recent trip to Memphis, Tenn. opened my eyes to tons of colorful and inspiring street art. Memphis is home to the legendary “I love Memphis” murals that are scattered all throughout the city.

The city is filled with art and just about every other building is the canvas to a gorgeous piece of art.

Going down the streets and seeing these colorful and intriguing pieces was truly phenomenal. There were so many breathtaking murals throughout Memphis.

If you ever get the chance to go there, I recommend taking the mural tour. I personally liked seeing all the art more than some of the actual tourist spots.

The debate of graffiti being a form of art or a form of vandalism is still current and more than likely will be for many years to come.

It all boils down to each person’s view on what is truly beautiful or what is just a defacing crime.

What do you choose to see? Do you choose to see the power within street art or do you choose to see more art crime?