Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Aurora Bridge Mural, Fremont and Graffiti

The Aurora Street Mural

The mural on N. 38th Street at Bridge Way under Aurora (location) is officially called the Aurora Bridge Mural (see photo of plaque below). We never knew what it was called until we walked up close to it and went back and forth over the surface to find the plaque which is located up high on the west end of the mural. The mural was created by Patrick Gabriel in 1996 and painted in 1997.

The mural has been restored (according to our memory) at least a few times since 1997 to clean up graffiti. It is now again starting to accumlate graffiti again in the form of “tagging”. From the highlights of a 2010 Graffiti Report conducted in Seattle, graffiti tags are defined as:

…simple names or symbols, often written in a stylized manner found in high volumes and in high-visible locations. Tags range from small single-color marks to large elaborate “pieces” in multiple colors and bubble-lettering. Seattle officials indicate that “tagging” is the City’s most common graffiti.
The full report cites statistics from the Portland Police Department that indicate that tagging accounted for 80% of the graffiti in Portland and goes on to give a less than flattering portrait of a tagger. He (and it is a he) is caucasian, educated and computer literate. He has an addictive personality, a chemical dependency, and is prone to violent behavior.

For more on graffiti in Fremont and past efforts to restore the 38th Street Mural, see FremontUniverse. For a little insight on sticker graffiti, see the MyBallard blog. On a related note, we were surprised to see that Aurora – the street - has its own web site with the tag line “Stories from Seattle’s Favorite Street.” Really, Seattle’s favorite street? According to the the full report cited above, parts of Aurora are definitely a hotspot for graffiti – see hotspot image.

Seattle Graffiti Hotspot Map (ref)
Seattle Graffiti Hotspot Map

Views of the Aurora Street Mural

Aurora Street Mural Plaque

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