Since the Naess Gallery raid and again since the announcement of charges relating to the raid, there has been a certain increase in discussion of Street Art in Edmonton. I find this discussion a very good thing. I’ve come up with a few questions which I find myself wrestling with. Perhaps sharing these questions will aid the discussion:
1. How much weight do the legal rights, interests, visions, intentions, desires of the property owner carry? (I don’t think it can be denied that property law, which is so deeply rooted in centuries of Statute and Common Law, is at the heart of the issue.)
2. How much weight do the aesthetic visions and intentions of the original architect/designer/engineer/builder carry?
3. How much weight do the visions/intentions/desires of the Street Artist carry?
4. Are there freedom of expression rights involved? If so, whose rights? How much weight do they carry?
5. How much weight do the opinions of the general public carry?
6. Does Street Art to some extent depend/thrive on its own illegality?
7. Would free walls and other “legitimate” venues be of much interest to artists who’s interest is rebellion/snubbing authority?