Why the Millennium Walkway Graffiti Wall Should be Kept Up

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This year’s Champions League Final is set to be held at the Principality Stadium on Saturday 3rd June 2017.

What does that mean? More adverts.

As brands seek to cash in on the massive exposure of the event more space for advertisements is being made. So Cardiff Council have decided to cover over the art on the Millennium Walkway with promotional material for the event. Chances are if you live in Cardiff you know it is going on, and if you are visiting Cardiff for the Champions League Final you know it is going on. So it seems kind of pointless to advertise it in the first place.

OK, fair enough, if the graffiti was just tags and penises but it isn’t. It is actually some really good art. The graffiti adds life to the grey generic cityscape. Cardiff already has enough bland, uninteresting adverts dotting the streets, do we really need more? Cardiff Council have said that they do want graffiti in the city centre and will be designating a new graffiti wall but this will take time and whether a new wall will be found and designated is still unknown.

There is a quote from Hannah Oxenham, a resident of Cardiff, on the change.org petition page (which I would urge you to sign) that sums it up very well.

“This is a representation of Cardiff’s diverse and unified culture… so much of Cardiff’s rich heritage is being ripped down and replaced by consumer driven greed.”

Unfortunately it seems likely that the Millennium Walkway wall won’t survive but perhaps by cooperating with the council some of the walls can be taken back from the hands of corporations.

As seen in Bristol street artists like Benoit Bennett, also known as object, are working with the council to form areas that can be freely used by graffiti artists. However, some fear that by letting the council supervise the art, the freedom of expression that is associated with it will be taken away and some works will be censored.

However, the best case scenario would be that the Millennium Walkway art stays up but due to the huge amounts of money that is being drawn in by giving this space to advertisers this almost definitely won’t be the case.


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