Graffiti now considered an artform

April 29, 2014, 4:22 PM UTC

Most Americans say that graffiti can be art, but opinion is divided on whether or not it is inherently an act of vandalism

Graffiti has been around for as long as humans have had paint and walls to daub it on, but in recent decades graffiti has evolved away from scribbles and crude drawings to sometimes breathtaking works of art. Graffiti's cultural evolution was closely tied to the birth of hip-hop, as youngsters in New York City painted increasingly detailed and large graffiti works on subway trains and walls in decaying neighborhoods. Quickly the art form quickly spread to other cities and countries around the globe. 

When YouGov asked Americans whether graffiti can be art, the overwhelming majority of the country (69%) said that it could be considered art, while 23% said that it could not be. Asked whether they like graffiti, however, only 14% of Americans said that they liked it. 36% said that it was OK, while 44% don't like graffiti.

43% of Americans do say, however, that all graffiti is vandalism , while 46% say that some graffiti is acceptable. Republicans (60%) are significantly more likely than Democrats (39%) to say that all graffiti is vandalism. Attitudes towards whether or not graffiti is vandalism do not vary significantly depending on whether or not someone lives in a city. 39% of city-dwellers say that graffiti is always vandalism, compared to 44% of suburbanites and 45% of people who live in towns or rural areas. 

Full poll results can be found here.

Image: Getty