City graffito

Despite recent posts here on the subject of art about art, by Leslie and by Karl, I hadn’t thought of the question in application to myself. Then I remembered that I did indeed have some photographs of art, at least if the gentle reader allows graffiti to be considered art. In any case, I was definitely interested in the personal expression represented by the graffiti. I was also interested in the setting, a half-underground concrete parking structure, and especially in the lighting, a mixture of glaring incandescent light and early morning daylight.

I made these images nearly a year ago, but still haven’t arrived at a presentation I’m happy with. I’m curious what you think of the following pairs of images. The first pair pits color against black and white. The color version shows the different tints of the two light sources, but the blacks feel richer to me in the monochrome image. Do you have a preference? For what reason?

Stairway and graffiti (color)

Stairway and graffiti

The next image I show in a lighter and a darker version. I like the high contrast of the first, but it may give the impression of a more brightly lit setting than it actually was. How does it seem to you?

Head and figure graffiti

Head and figure graffiti (darker)

I guess the real reason I’m not satisfied is that I’m not sure what I’m saying with these and my other similar photographs. Are they about the graffiti, is that where your attention mostly remains? Are they about the abstract tones, the play of light and dark, and if so, is that pleasing? Do you detect a political or social comment lurking in the shadows?