Install, document and dismantle

When looking at street art online, we typically only see one or two photos of a piece. Maybe there will also be a some photos or a video showing how the piece was painted, but once the photos of the completed piece have been taken, what more is there? As beautiful as some pieces can be as they age, it seems most people online don’t want to see weekly updates on how even their favorite pieces are aging when there’s always brand new pieces to see too. Everyone wants to see the photo of the finished piece. And everyone is a global audience. By this point, it’s clear that there are street artists making work for that audience, but some artists take things a step further. There are many street artists out there who install work, document it, and then quickly dismantle it. Sometimes this install/document/dismantle process is evident, such as when artists say that it’s happened or when the work is clearly not attached to anything in a permanent manner, but it’s not always so easy to know if the artist left their work in place after they got the shot they needed, or if they packed it up so as to save some money on art supplies and not cause a disturbance. I’ll give a few examples.

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