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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Grant compensation of USD 6.75 million to graffiti artists.

Por sumily

The word "graffiti" has its origins in the Greek word graphein which means to write. This evolved into the Latin word graffito. Graffiti is the plural form of graffito.When did graffiti begin? Well, modern graffiti history goes back to the 60s when he started in New York, influenced by hip-hop music. The first graffiti artists were dedicated to signatures, and they lived and painted in New York.One of the first graffiti artists signed TAKI 183 and was interviewed by the New York Times in 1971. His real name was Demetrius and he was a young Greek who worked as a messenger in New York. He painted his signature in all the places where he delivered documents and packages. He became famous and many young people began to imitate him and to look for more and more difficult and striking places to leave his signature. Perhaps the name TAKER that is used for the thick permanent ink markers used by the graffiti artists has its origin in the first known graffiti signature, TAKI 183.

In a historic ruling that determines that the art of graffiti must be protected by US federal law, a judge in New York granted compensation of 6.75 million dollars to 21 graffiti artists whose works were laundered by a real estate investor in 2013. In a written decision published Monday, Judge Frederic Block awarded the maximum amount possible for damages, $ 150,000 for each of the 45 works removed from the walls of the 5Pointz warehouse in Queens.

For 20 years real estate investor Jerry Wolkoff invited graffiti artists to intervene on the walls of this large industrial complex, making it, according to the artists' lawyer, the largest outdoor aerosol museum in the world. But in 2013 Wolkoff covered his walls with white and the following year demolished the building to allow the construction of luxurious residential towers worth 400 million dollars.

The 21 artists sued for damages, arguing that before the arrival of the demolition crane they should have had the opportunity to rescue their art from the internationally acclaimed building and become a tourist attraction. They asked the jurors to consider a little-known federal law, the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990, which holds that any work of art should be protected, as long as its caliber is recognized.

The jury ruled last November in Brooklyn federal court that the real estate investor violated the law, but his decision was not binding and left the judge with the task of pronouncing a final judgment. And in doing so, Block raised from 36 to 45 the number of works of art that in his opinion were tall enough to claim compensation. According to the judge, if it were not for the insolence of Wolkoff, these damages would not have been evaluated. If he had not destroyed 5Pointz until after receiving his permits and had demolished it 10 months later, the court would not have found that he acted stubbornly. The pity is that as 5Pointz was a prominent tourist attraction the public would have run to say goodbye during those 10 months, to observe the formidable artworks in aerosol for the last time.