Toronto, we are told, is a world-class city. But Toronto is noticeably absent from the list of major urban centres famous for graffiti and street art: New York, Barcelona, San Francisco, Berlin, LA, Melbourne, and London. Even within Canada, smaller cities like Montreal and Vancouver hold a better reputation for graffiti than Toronto.
Vandalist seeks to change all that.
Toronto has some amazing stuff going on and up onto the walls—we just rarely hear about it. Perhaps it has something to do with that oft-lamented aspect of our national character: we all groan at Canadian content. We don’t make musicians famous here, we wait until others have approved of them before offering them our acceptance. Maybe a stencil really is cooler when it’s sprayed on the streets of NYC than on the streets of the GTA.
But Vandalist doesn’t think so. The work is there. It’s good. It’s getting better. And it’s not just downtown, but out in the farthest reaches of our city.
We want to expand its audience and increase its status. We want to give it an international showcase online. We hope this will enlarge and improve the scene—but we need your help, whether you’re an artist looking for a venue (other than the street) to show off your stuff, or a fan of the genre who likes discovering new work.
All you’ve gotta do to participate is send photos of the piece to [email protected], along with the artist’s name (if you know it), its location, and—if it wasn’t yours and you want credit for the discovery—your name and website. Every week on Friday, we’ll feature the best stuff we get sent.
Illustration by Marc Lostracco.