Arts and Culture

Safa Samiezadé-Yazd illuminates graffiti's role in the Arab Spring tonight at the DAM

Just as American graffiti art comprises a variety of styles, techniques and intent, so does its Middle-Eastern counterpart -- but that's just scraping the surface of these art forms. Their differences begin with what's most basic to the medium: alphabets and hand-strokes as unlike as East and West. And while American graffiti may be politically driven, modern Arabic graffiti-writing covers a Middle-Eastern map of insurrection and uprisings.

See also: Denver's Best Graffiti Street Art: The top twenty

"Just as rap became the soundtrack to the Arab Spring, graffiti was its canvas, an open-ended graphic novel of sorts, an illustrated history where the silenced could finally articulate their voices, their situations, their identities," writes Asian Media arts editor and scholar Safa Samiezadé-Yazd in an article for Art21 Magazine.

Samiezadé-Yazd will share her knowledge on the subject tonight at the Denver Art Museum in a slide lecture, "Spraycan Calligraphy: Graffiti Art from the Middle East," presented by the museum, DAM Contemporaries and the Asian Art Association. Hear her elaborate from 7 to 9 p.m. on the lower level of the DAM's Hamilton Building. Tickets are $10 to $15; find information at the Denver Art Museum online.

To keep up with the Froyd's eye view of arts and culture in Denver, "like" my fan page on Facebook.

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd