Have you ever tried painting a wall without removing the old paint first? Things get messy most of the time. You’ve got chips and bumps everywhere and the color doesn’t usually come out as good and smooth as a wall that has been cleaned and polished.
So can you imagine painting on a wall filled with graffiti as old as 30 years? Spraying over signs that were meaningful, even revolutionary, two decades before. Spraying over declarations and creative designs, bursts of anger and protest.
This is what Imgur user PaulDeGraaf wanted to know when he found himself in front of a 30-year-old wall spray painted multiple times with graffiti. The user visited the “Doornrooosje” in Nijmegen, the Netherlands — a “hotspot” for graffiti lovers. The user peeled a sample of paint from the walls and posted the pictures of the sample on his account.
PaulDeGraaf was curious to see what a fragment of the graffiti wall would look like from the side. This is a wall that has been spray painted for more than 30 years. The sample shows a cacophony of colors. More than that, it’s a testament to the numerous hands that have added color to this wall.
On his page, PaulDeGraff writes about the famous wall. “What started as a 70’s Hippie cult place, became a center of music and art in the early 80’s. One of the first places where it was legal to smoke cannabis. It still a Music studio and Graffiti Hall of Fame. The building is surrounded by walls that are all spray painted from top to bottom.”
PaulDeGraff even created a timeline for the graffiti sample with important events that mark the color of the sample. He starts with the present year, marking it to a dark blue/grey layer Then he marks the year 2012 when Rover successfully landed on Mars.
For the white/grey portion of the graffiti layer, he marks the year 2009 and the death of Michael Jackson. He also finds it important to mark the year of Dick Butt. You know the animation, and if you don't, well, you're missing out on an important contemporary animation.
PaulDeGraff also marks the years popular social mediums were launched. These include Facebook in 2004 to which he attributes the olive-green layer of paint. He also singles out YouTube in 2005 with the yellow/grey layer.
PaulDeGraff even marked the timeline with space trivia. He lists the year 2003, marking the "Space Shuttle Columbia disaster." He also lists the discovery of the dwarf planet Quaoar in 2002 with a bluish layer.
The graffiti timeline even had important moments for humanity added to it. Like the year 1999 marked on a rusty orange layer to mark the year the euro became the new European Currency. This guy even thought it was important to mark the year 1998 with the red layer of graffiti as the year the Viagra was released on the market.
The guy even went all pop culture on us. He marks the year 1995 with the dark green layer of the graffiti as the year OJ Simpson was found innocent. He also marks the year 1994 with a purple-like layer for the year Nelson Mandela became the president of South Africa.
The timeline goes way back to 1984. The guy marks other years on the graffiti timeline such as 1990, the year the Gulf War began and 1989 when the first episode of The Simpsons was aired. He ends the list of events with the launch of the Macintosh in 1985.
The wall, PaulDeGraaf writes, will continue to be spray painted on for decades to showcase the work of artists who come to visit this place. On another note, if you are losing your appreciation of graffiti art you better visit a wall soon. Never has anyone, until this guy, made graffiti sound so boring.